We were back on the road at 5:45, each eating an apple as we went. That sounds early, but we would later regret not leaving earlier.
Between the two of us, we probably drank about 4 gallons of water by noon. And that was in no way excessive! We had been looking forward to a tailwind today, and it was certainly nice at times, but most of our route had the wind coming at us from the left, constantly trying to push us off the road. And it was amazing (though incredibly frustrating) to be passed by trucks – especially the “oversize load” ones carrying enormous hay bales. Each time, we would have to cling to our handlebars, grit our teeth, and steer our bikes through the wall of wind that came just after the truck passed. Thankfully, the road was relatively quiet, so we didn’t have to deal with that too often!
The landscape began to really change as the morning went on. The hazy blue hills in the distance became darker and clearer, and despite the growing heat, it was so exciting to see real hills again – and we’re getting close to the mountains…
Well. I just skimmed over the heat we experienced today. Even the breeze felt a bit like the rush of air that hits your face as you open the oven. Okay, maybe it wasn’t quite that bad. But it was hot, and we pushed ourselves to get to Sturgis (a 73.5 mile morning!) before taking a mid-day break.
We escaped the heat in a coffee shop, bought a smoothie, and sat there dazed after the biking this morning.
Just as we set out to leave the parking lot of the coffee shop, some dark clouds were rolling in… And there were severe thunderstorm warnings.
It started to rain about 10 minutes after we sat down, and then it started to hail!
90 degrees outside, and little bits of ice falling from the sky! There were warnings for softball-sized hail in an area not too far from us, so we figured somewhere with shelter would be a good idea. We started talking with some people at a nearby table about camping options nearby, and as they brainstormed for us, the people next to them offered to let us stay in a cabin of theirs a few miles away!
We got a ride to Katmandu with our hosts for the night, who said that they figured our parents would be happy to know someone was taking care of us. We showered and are in a great little cabin with bunks. Even if it decides to hail again, we’ll have no problems. Thank you to our new friends for your hospitality!
Aidan’s missing his tiny house now! This little cabin certainly has a similar kind of charm.