Bicycling the TransAmerica Trail

Cycling Across the US, Coast to Coast

Bicycling Adventure #3

54 days, 3,783 miles, Jul-Aug 2010

Ray Jardine

2010-08-14Kansas page 30 of 54

Day 30, Kansas

From Rush Center to Great Bend

I left the Rush Center mini-park before dawn, and enjoyed the solitude of having the road to myself, and the beauty of the early morning. Most days I get to watch the sunrise, starting from a golden glow on the eastern horizon, straight ahead but just slightly to my left. Then a pin-prick of golden-white light that grows so fast that I can soon no longer bear to look at it. Then I spend the next hour with my head down and helmet canted low, so it's visor shades my eyes.

The official route leaves Highway 96 back at Rush Center, but I kept following 96 for 32 more miles to the city of Great Bend. I needed a few bike things, and knew of a good bike store there (thanks to the internet).

A surprising sight on the way to Great Bend.

The store didn't open until 10 am, so I rode around town for miles, just to see what it was like.

I was at the bike store when the owner arrived; he invited me to bring my bike in, and park it against the wall.

I needed four spare inner tubes, and also a new tire pump that didn't destroy the valves. Such simple things when you live in a city, but out there in never-never land, such items are essential to one's very survival. Well, not really, but out there where I was having difficulty, it would have been a long time before I could have reached a store, via hitchhiking.

Yesterday's ordeal in the sun, with the tire repairs, had sapped my energy; so I stopped for the day at a cheap motel and spent much of the remainder of the day resting.

Miles pedaled today: 37

Trip mileage: 2,200 - more than half-way.

The story has 54 pages. This is page 30.
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