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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Day 13 - Burley to Pocatello - Power Failure




Today I crashed....

Not literally...

But it was a tough day...













This morning in the desert I got dehydrated...

Forty five miles without a potty and I didn't drink much.

Then I got behind and didn't stop for lunch.

By the end of the day I couldn't keep my head up.

Not getting enough sleep.

This biking across America is tough.


But then let me tell you about the day....




We start early from Burley





kickin' tailwind...







Cold...






Cross the Snake early...







Irrigation fields for seventeen miles.










Mexican men working in the fields...






Mile 18 finally the silver sagebrush that I love...







Cattleguards rumble my teeth and my seat.








Don't stop much - just for the prickly pear.







After hours of riding a glimpse of civilization.







SAG briefly  at a deserted gas station.






Ian is grounded by broken spokes.






I bike with Gerard for a few miles...







But then the photo ops call....








Finally Mile 45 - Register Rock and facilities....

Lovely picnic area on the Snake...




Cinnamon roll and diet coke while perusing the names carved in the rock by Oregon Trail travelers many years ago.

They had it tougher than I do.

Walking in the dust...

Thirsty...

I read a book once about their journey - that when they reached the edge of the desert, they finally found fresh water - hundreds of feet down a sheer cliff in the Snake River gorge...

A man went crazy and just walked off the edge and crashed into the river below.




I bike on...

It's hot...

I'm hungry and still thirsty...

Ten more miles to the town of American Falls...



I'm too far behind to stop for lunch...

Soldier on...




Bike now with Ian and his new spokes...

Charming man - tells me about health care in Scotland and his family back home...


But I have to stop at the next gas station for more food and gatorade....




Alone now I race the trains..




They win, so I just watch the land through their open cars...






Nearing town - not the scenic route....







Mining operation....

Curious, I approach the gate....




Who needs this many locks?




Their barbed wire sparkles in the desert sun.

Later I google them...



FMC - phosphorus mining

in the 1990's huge settlement  - $11 million with the EPA.

Closed in 2001.

Last month cited by Idaho Health Agency for phosphine gas emitting from the waste ponds.

Not everything across America is pretty scenery and flowers.



I meet up with my friend Phillip and we pass the sewage treatment plant (Phew!) and gravel mining...





...men working in the fields...







Enter town...







Get lost - hot and tired..







But the local fair is charming...







Last turn to the hotel...








and Best Western a welcome sight...





But I'm wiped out.


Can I make it all the way across America?


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