Day 24 McPherson to Emporia, KS

0 miles

Today was not a day that was worth riding, for myself and a few others, at least. The projected winds were gusting to as high as 50 mph and the National Weather Service issued a warning to that effect. I walked out of our hotel to check the winds for myself and was nearly knocked over as I rounded a corner.

So I decided, using the same logic as in Texas, that there was no value to me in riding today. (I rode “every inch” in 2004 and again in 2019.) Then, when I brought my bags to the lobby, I learned that staff was postponing the start for 3 hours to a point when the winds/gusts would still be very strong, but beginning to lessen. Still in possession of my room key, I went back upstairs and binged some Netflix.

The quality of some of the photos below may be diminished because I was shooting through the van window, sometimes while it was moving.

After dinner a rain squall came by our hotel, with some distant thunder and lightning. I was over in time for the sun to shine again before sunset.

On our rest day I did my chores and replaced my rear tire. It had plenty of tread life left but several cuts in the tread. I didn’t get too serious about really cleaning the bike because rain is likely for the next day or two.

Perhaps an ever so slight (5%) tailwind, 95% crosswind. When we restart after tomorrow’s rest day, the wind is predicted to come from the north and be in our faces again.
One of the ways the staff keeps track of us is to “bump” (their term) ahead of us with the two minivans and cargo truck. The van that is providing the next SAG stop keeps ahead of the lead riders and another van or the cargo truck hangs out around the last riders. Here you can see that the shoulder is narrow. What you cannot see is a pothole in the shoulder that has forced this rider to enter the traffic lane to avoid it.
A more typical shoulder section, thankfully not subdivided by a rumble strip as we found in Texas and Oklahoma. Not as much room as we were given the day before, however. One of our riders grew tired of big-rigs not moving over to provide a margin of safety and decided to hitch a ride in the van.
Our first SAG was at the Hillsboro Cove Public Use Area on the Marion Reservoir
Our second SAG setup. Peyton, our mechanic, is on the right. The table on the right contains hand sanitizing supplies and our sign-in/out sheet. The other table has Cliff bars and Shots and energy gels. A rotating selection of snacks (here, pretzels and grapes) join the energy drink and water jugs on the back of the van.