Monday, 12 July 2010

Hot Springs to Rapid City

After we were given the profile for today's ride I must admit to feeling worried as there were to be huge ascents and descents (I liked the sound of the latter).  We loaded at 05:45, had breakfast on the way and I set off at 06:30 to an immediate steep climb out of  Hot Springs. The climbs then continued and seemed steep and long.  After cycling for 3 hours, I had covered less than 21 miles and was feeling lethargic and a bit fed up.  Fortunately, there were some photo opportunities on the way and I came upon this street sign which tiockled my funny bone.
No, not US Highway 385 stupid!!
I then spotted some Bison (Buffalo) and some Prairie Dogs

And then saw a rather tasty log cabin

I got to the first SAG stop with only a marginal increase in speed and was glad of the respite.
Rod very kindly slowed down and cycled with me, dragging me up the next batch of hills and I began to feel a bit more motivated as we got closer to the Crazy Horse memorial.  That left about 15 miles to Mount Rushmore and some really superb scenery and rock formations.

Oooh Err Missus

And then, at 52.2 miles and after nearly 7 hours of cycling, the big one.
Needless to say, people were very interested in what we were doing and I met a nice American couple who had a chap from Glasgow staying with them and then another friendly fellow offered to take my photo.

After Rushmore we had a nice downhill where I hit 42.9 mph.
That was the first time I had used my camera to record a clip whilst cycling and it sounds a lot noisier than it seemed to be at the time.  We hit the entertaining town of Keystone for the second SAG stop then after a stiff 3 mile climb, speed increased dramatically for the last 17 miles to the hotel (thank goodness) with some small climbs but big descents.  8am loading tomorrow so hopefully, a bit of a lie in.
Today's Stats.
Mileage - 74
Climbing - 5000 feet
Time in saddle - 8 hours
Average Speed - 9.25 mph.
Lowest Speed - 2.9 mph.
High Speed - 42.9 mph.

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