Day 19 – Lander to Rawlins

Tues 22nd June 2010

Where to start? Okay it’s 10:30pm here and I’m tired so I’ll just tell it how it is.

We had a slight lay in until 5:20am because I didn’t hear the alarm, what luxury. When we set off this morning we didn’t really know how far we would go or where we would be sleeping tonight. Between Lander and Rawlins there are only three possible places to stay, Jeffrey City, Muddy Gap and behind Grandma’s Cafe in Lamont. None of these are proper camping sites so facilities would be non existent. Although we had planned to go to Jeffrey City it was only 57 miles leaving us with 110 miles the following day, so we both wanted to cycle a bit further to reduce that long 110 mile day. It was 125 miles to Rawlins so that was too far and out of the question, we thought!

The sun was up and it was a nice morning when we set off. There was no wind (other than Chris that is) and we would gradually gain altitude all day.

In the first 40 miles we had met several other cyclist going the other way. We met two male cyclist who were doing the Transam in the other direction and three female cyclists, Terri, Nicole and Aaron (not sure if I’ve spelled that correctly). We also met the Oesch family (Barb, Myron and their children Erin, Claren and Breton) who were on a 2,000 mile tour from Denver to Seattle. We stopped and spoke to all these and it was great to exchange info and have a chat while the mosquitoes had their lunch.

Terri with bike



Aaron and Nicole

Oesch Family

Oesch family

By midday we had already done our planned 57 miles and reached Jeffrey City. It was not an inviting place and we had no intention of stopping there. So we set off again for Muddy Gap, another 23 miles up the road. We found the first shop there in 80 miles and stopped to buy some bits. Like Jeffrey City there was nowhere to camp and it was only 3:00pm so we made the decision to try and make Rawlins, a further 44 miles.

Jeffrey City

Jeffrey City - Nice!

As we set off from Muddy Gap we saw a storm coming our way, an electrical storm that we didn’t want to get caught in. So we took shelter in the Highways Dept building at Muddy Gap and waited there until we thought it safe to leave. When we did leave the wind from the storm was so strong that we couldn’t cycle in it so we had to wait until it was safe to continue. So over an hour later we set off but by this time it was 4:15pm and Rawlins seemed a long way off. An early finish was definitely not on the cards.

Muddy Gap

Sheltering in Muddy Gap

When we got going the storm had all but passed and the wind turned in our favour and the sun came out. The shoulder we had to cycle on was dreadful but it was too dangerous not to use it. We cycled passed Grandma’s Cafe in Lamont. We could have stayed there as many do but it didn’t look inviting so we carried on. Soon we began to make good time again and the road surface improved.

Grandma's cafe

Grandma's Cafe - In the middle of nowhere

About 15 miles from Rawlins the journey had a sting in the tail when we were confronted by one last hill. The GPS told me that it was 6 miles to the top, just what we needed with 110 miles in the legs already. Still, with our super fitness and ultra light bikes we soon made short work of that and from the top it was a short fast downhill into Rawlins. The GPS found us a supermarket and we then set off to find a campsite, which  of course was on the other side of town. We got here at 8:30pm after doing 128 miles and a 14hr day and we ate our dinner in the dark.

6 mile hill

The start of the six mile hill

So to sum up our day we cycled 128miles to avoid cycling 110 miles tomorrow – yep that makes perfect sense to me. It was actually worth the extra miles to have a warm shower and facilities. I can even do the blog and will sleep well in the knowledge that we are 70 miles ahead of schedule.

Tonight the alarm will be turned off.

Daily Mileage – 128.4 miles

Time in Saddle – 10 hrs 20 mins

Total Climbing – 4,866 ft


  1. Oh, sounds painful.
    Keep going boys!!
    There is plenty of support back home.

  2. Bob has told me the stories of the saddle wind that blows from Chris’s bike.Great progress to do 128 miles.

  3. You two are crazy! But that is why you are out there doing this and I am sat at work!!!

    Well done on completing another day, really enjoying all the posts.

    Lots of Love lisa

  4. Gee whiz! you guys are doing swell! Happy to hear the Sherman is still blowing along. bob

  5. No I know what causes all those tornados. Great work guys. I go to the Gym these days to cycle 6 mile in 10 mins, beats the hills of Dakota.

    I’m counting the days now. 9wks and I’m in Ireland, so what will you feel like doing then? A short ride to Windemere.

  6. Very impressed with what you are achieving but very concerned about you. I am so looking forward to August!

  7. I don’t know how you can keep going day after day. I have to agree with Lisa that “you two are crazy!” Safe travels!

  8. Terri’s bike – thst is my kind of bike. get me one like that and I may come with you another time – or not!!!!

  9. All i can say is WELL DONE!!
    Rather you than me.

  10. You both are doing quite well, barring the insect bites. Here in Virginia there have been many days with temperatures reaching the 90′s F. We had a heck of a storm last Thursday that damaged many homes and cars in Charlottesville with downed trees and limbs. Our home was not affected however. I am enjoying your blog. I hope the other Police in Virginia keep their promises to help you.