The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Canada to Mexico.

Welcome! This site documents a two month, solo, unsupported mountain bike tour of the The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Banff AB Canada to the US-Mexican border at Antelope Wells, NM. The trip began in late July and finished 25 SEP 2007. It took 61 days and encompassed 2842.32 miles.

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28 August 2007

Day 33 Rawlins, WY

Hello from southern Wyoming! The bizarre and challenging alpine desert
between Pinedale and Rawlins is now behind me. I rolled into town
mid afternoon yesterday, a little dehydrated and sunburned but
otherwise in good shape.

Having been in this in this area before, I knew what to
expect...relative to what you can see from a vehicle window at 75 mph.
Basically, in S Wyoming, the Divide is not a stereotypic, dramatic,
wooded mountainous's a rolling, dry, desolate, scrub brushy
plain. One could cross the Continental Divide several times and not
even know it. The Divide actually splits in this area forming a non
draining feature (which works with very little rain and snowmelt)
known as The Great Divide Basin. The high range, wooded mountains of
the Divide pick back up near the CO/WY border. The Divide in S New
Mexico is deserty and dry like this as well.

Anyway, started a big day out of Pinedale with a lot of mileage and
some climbing. Almost got hit by a NOLS bus in the middle of a
drainage climb...but it wasn't her fault or mine. Ran into some more
NOLS folks late in the day near the Sweetwater River. The jefe of
the group wanted to confirm that my desert survival plans were solid
before moving on. It was hot and windy that day and the next, so his
concerns were valid...NOLS is a good outfit.

I took on the big open section the next day, starting the ride at 7AM
and finally bagging out, not even setting up camp, some time after
midnight. Some challenges occur when you can see the road you need to
ride extending as far as you can see in front of you, generally uphill
it always seemed.
The next morning I packed up and was moving by daybreak, although it
still took me 7-8 hours to finally get to Rawlins. The last 15-20
miles was on Highway 287...the same road I was tweaking out on back in
the Tetons area, this time with at least a decent shoulder. Although
it was pavement, there was significant climbing in addition to the
obligatory 500 mph Wyoming headwind; so I was on this stretch long
enough to see a well organized trio of highway patrols nab easily over twenty
motorists. What settles for entertainment in the desert...

Moving on to Colorado soon enough...but will likely spend very little
of some previously planned downtime in Steamboat IOT avoid the holiday
crowds. I'll blow through Summit County and hang out some further
south in mellow Salida...which is a really cool and no so touristy

To answer a few recurring questions:
- I have lost weight...15-20 lbs. Some of which needed to go...the
rest is muscle mass lost by not lifting weights.
- Average around 55 miles a day...the most being 95 and the least 23.
I have had one flat in over 1500 miles...mostly due to tire
- Physical problems include some CTS type symptoms in both hands and
some intermittent knee pain..not enough to even need meds for.
- The food I crave the most...watermelon. Strange though, 10 yrs
ago in Ranger School it was Allsup's burritos.
- The weather has been better than I planned for.
- Equipment is holding up really well and logistics planning has
gone, planned. Major unexpected shortage of Chamois Butt'r
though...I have to substitute.
- I think about a lot of things while riding during the day, can't
recall WHAT exactly.
- I miss my friends/family, the animals, healthy Boulder food, and
regular yoga sessions.
- Yes, it has been worth what I gave up to do this trip. I
understand the challenges upon return...they will be worth it as well.

Mileage to date: 1518.85 (yes, over halfway!)
Divide crossings: 14