Precursor

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FB POST: I’m making this event for people when they are bored to read my posts that i will try to make weekly about this trip.I am not copying Heath Kirchart, i came up with this idea before he did! I encourage words of discouragement (shit talking), music suggestions, and betting on when ill pussy out. If you don’t wanna get a notification from some douchebag (me) every week or so, delete this event. I am on 350 dollar budget which means no hotels, no campgrounds, no showers, no luxuries. I will be sleeping in a tent on the side of roads, under bridges, in the mountains, and in the desert. I’m not doing this for charity but donations are more than welcome. Almost a 1000 cyclists die each year, so lets hope I’m not one of them (unless you hate me, then its ok to hope i am). catch y’all on the flip side.

June 9, 2011 at 10:34am

HOW TO READ THIS BLOG: I intend this blog to benefit no one. It is merely a shitty account of my journey across this great country. I created to a facebook event to let my friends and family know how I was doing during the trip. I have now taken those posts and created a blog illustrated with some of the photos I took with my iPhone. The facebook posts that I made during the trip start with “FB POST:”  then end with the date and time in blue. I then made some “AFTER THOUGHT:” remarks that shed some light to my posts and add some anecdotes that I still remember.

DISCLAIMER: I will be adding “After thoughts” continuously. I am very busy with school and work, so they will trickle in slowly. I will also eventually add all the comments that people left of the event page. I am sorry if this causes any inconveniences.  

AFTER THOUGHT:  I really didn’t have time to think about my trip just before I left because I had finals. After my last final I loaded all my crap into my mom’s car and she left. Then began. The entire quarter I would ride my bike around in the Santa Cruz mountains as much as possible. This really was not even close to the amount of training I should have been doing. 

 

A few months before I left I got really fucked up skateboarding. Not once, but twice. Back to back. The first one I smashed my knee cap (pretty sure I cracked it because I can feel the crack, and its huge and painful still!). A month or so later, on the first day of skating, I rolled my ankle super bad. There’s another few weeks gone. That was pretty much end of my skateboarding career. From injuries then my bike trip then summer school then directly to Nepal to climb Mera Peak then work in the fall and harder classes then previously I could barely fit skateboarding into my schedule. It was worth it though. 

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Day 1-4: California (6/9/11-6/13/11)

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FB Post: So I lied to y’all cuz I actually started in santa Cruz when I left my dorm on thursday sorry! Well now I’m in nevada and I’m looking at 500 miles of absolute nothing. small towns are spread out along life magazines “lonliest road in America” at an average of 70 miles in between them with temps reaching 100 degrees and about 12 1500 foot to 3500 foot climbs. My bike weighs almost a 100 lbs with the water and the wind seems to be blowing against me. My butt hurts really bad. It seems to me going another 100 miles today is gonna be a peice of cake.

June 13, 2011 at 10:07am via mobile

AFTER THOUGHT: I left my dorm in Santa Cruz immediately after my last final and went to the beach. I dipped my feet in the freezing water and then headed to my house over the hill. I spent the next two days preparing and making my to the Sierras. My dad joined me in Arnold, California. We rode to Ebbetts Pass and stayed at the coolest campground. It was technically closed, but since there was still tons of snow and nobody around we thought it would be fine.

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The next day (6/13) we rode through Markleeville and crossed into Nevada in the afternoon. The Camel pack I bought was broken (missing a rubber seal) so we went to an auto parts store and purchased one that fit perfectly. I remember hurting my hip really bad when we stopped to take pictures at the Nevada border so I was going pretty slow for the next hour after that. But after an hour the pain went away and we were flying. Pretty soon we were pretty much at Fallon. We stopped at Lake Lahontan so I could set up camp and my dad could be picked up by mom. I washed off in the lake and went to sleep promptly, even though the wind was blowing like crazy.

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Day 5-7: Nevada (6/13/11 – 6/15/11)

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FB POST: So ive been riding 100 miles a day so far and I’m almost at Utah. I havent showered in a week and I apply sunscreen every morning and Bug spray at night, I have grease all over my legs, blood all over my hands arms and face and I have 33 or so bites from approximately 7 different bugs such as red ants spiders and skeeters. I rode through a big thunderstorm with lightning striking in front of me and behind me, luckily it was raining so I got a little cleaner. There is some of the nicest racist out here, people tend to yell white power at me when they see I shaved my head. It’s late and I still have to find a nice ditch to set up camp see ya later

June 15, 2011 at 10:43pm via mobile

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AFTER THOUGHT: It is very hard to remember Nevada because it was the loneliest part. I use the word “loneliest” because it was actually deemed the loneliest road in America. I would see a car every hour or so. Just outside Fallon there was roadwork on highway 50. Long portions were just gravel with large trucks and machines kicking up dust and debris. I stopped at a bar and grill shack out in the middle of nowhere and had a beer and some whiskey with old time Harley bikers. They were a funny group of dudes. The last thing they said to me was “Don’t let your ass get shredded!” They stayed at the bar and I biked off. Then 30 minutes later they sped by me and they all raised their fists. I was so stoked. Possibly later that day or the next a very old woman asked me if I wanted to smoke pot with her. I politely declined.

 

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At a rest stop where I was eating nutella and bread and mom and daughter stopped and asked me about my trip. They offered water and food, but I was very well supplied so I said no thanks.  They were on a family trip to explore the Great Basin. They said it was absolutely lovely and that I would love it there. They wished me luck and continued on there journey. There was one last encounter that I remember where I was biking pretty fast and a man was driving the other way and as I biked by he yelled “Do you need water?” and with out skipping a beat I replied “N000000.” The point of these anecdotes is that these people out in the middle of nowhere are the nicest people. I wasn’t afraid to stop and talk to anyone or ask for directions or wheres a good restaurant. However, I would occasionally get yelled strange phrases like “White power!” or “N***er!” It was also very convenient to sleep on the side of the road.

 

One night I setup camp off the highway  about 40 feet down an (what seemed to be) a failed dirt road. At some point a large truck pulled up right next to my tent for maybe a minute, then slowly backed up and drove away. I was freaked. I just kept thinking about the Hills Have Eyes. Needless to say I didn’t get much sleep that night.

It was probably a week or so after I began my journey that I began talking to myself. Even though I met a lot of people and talked to locals most of the time it was just me and the road. Pure solitude. I would come over a mountain pass and be able to see the road disappear over the horizon. I would bike for an hour and it would have seemed if I were on a treadmill. This was pretty much the theme of my trip through Nevada. But at least the scenery was amazing.

Day 10: Utah 1 (6/18/11)

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FB POST: Today is gonna suck. All uphill all day . I saw badger that was cool i thought they were fake. I also thought after brutal Utah and Colorado it would be easy but apparently there are mass t storms lots of tornadoes flooding and golf ball sized hail directly on my route. I cannot wait for that fun! See ya on the flipside.

June 18, 2011 at 10:33am via mobile

 

 

AFTER THOUGHT:

 

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Day 11: Utah 1 (6/19/11)

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FB POST (6/23/11): So I got John Cardiel’d and messed my knee up pretty bad. I just got into Colorado and I’m really hoping to be in pueblo Colorado by July. The other night I stayed with BMW rally race group, really interesting people and they gave me free, cold beer, warm food, and a shower. I got really badly sunburned in Utah near lake Powell, I was low on water and I barely made it to the next town. Utah is an incredible place and highway 12 has truly amazing scenery. I only got two more mountains both around 11000 ft then it’s flat tornado alley.

 

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Day 10: Utah 2 (6/20/11)

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FB POST (6/23/11) : So I got John Cardiel’d and messed my knee up pretty bad. I just got into Colorado and I’m really hoping to be in pueblo Colorado by July. The other night I stayed with BMW rally race group, really interesting people and they gave me free, cold beer, warm food, and a shower. I got really badly sunburned in Utah near lake Powell, I was low on water and I barely made it to the next town. Utah is an incredible place and highway 12 has truly amazing scenery. I only got two more mountains both around 11000 ft then it’s flat tornado alley.

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AFTER THOUGHT: 

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