DAY 38

April 21, 1999

Reaching Pittsburgh, KS I stopped at "Bicycle Etc." I was still looking for a good rear rack and panniers. After talking to Phil, the owner, he recommended that I wait as long as possible on my trip before I start adding more weight on that rear wheel. The panniers can wait until Montana. But after that, I’m going to want to be able to carry more food and water with me. As I mentioned before, the longest stretch of isolated road will be the last road to Prudhoe Bay. I’ve been thinking about getting a couple of bear resistant food containers too. Above the Arctic Circle there are no trees to hang your food and you surely don’t want to keep it in your tent! I used them last summer in the Denali wilderness and they worked great. That means I’ll need more space… rear panniers.

While at the bike shop I had Phil adjust my rear derailer. I adjusted it at the beginning of the trip and just recently started having problems with it due to cable stretching. Also, I have to add that this is one very cool bike shop. I’ve been in many in the past few years. A lot of the guys in bike shops have "attitudes", but Phil was really cool. I would highly recommend a stop here for anyone riding through.

Before I left, Phil recommended that I camp at the State Park about 30 miles north. It was the closest place to camp and I could head west from there tomorrow. I headed north on 400, which is called Broadway in town, then turned west on 57 at Franklin. Following 57 west, I had crosswinds again until I turned north on 7 at Girard, then heading north was a breeze! The wind just pushed me along @ 24mph :-)

By the time I got to the park, the winds were gusting to 40mph. There was one very slick, flooded, section that I had to bike across. It was like an overflow for the lake and I came very close to wiping out! There were no other tent camper's in my area and I saw only 3 RV’s, across the water from me. Somehow a bug got trapped under my tent and kept making this annoying buzzing sound. So to preserve my sanity, I had to eliminate the noise by beating on my tent floor ‘til the buzzing stopped.

Today - 36.02 miles in Kansas (total for the day 66.02 miles)
Total - 1952

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