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DAY
DATE
FROM
TO
DESCRIPTION
AUTHOR
 
               
  041
042
043
044
045
046
07/14/06
07/15/06
07/16/06
07/17/06
07/18/06
07/19/06
Scott City
Ness City
Larned
Newton
Eureka
Chanute

Ness City
Larned
Newton
Eureka
Chanute
Girard
Kansas heat wave

passed the halfway point...2,000 miles!
David  
 
 
2000 Miles!
 
Kansas Haystack
 
table nap
     
 

Thursday July 14-19, 2006 426 miles - Total so far: 2,300

I've grouped these 6 days together as one journal entry because, except for one evening in Newton and the final evening (more on that later) they were torturous...due to the EXTREME heat wave in Kansas where each day the temperature reached over 100 degrees! The hottest day (Sunday) began rather pleasantly, since I had heard the forecast and decided to begin cycling at four in the morning to avoid as much of the heat as possible. The three-quarter moon cast my shadow on the pavement and lit my path better than any headlight. At one point a meteorite streaked halfway across the sky with the brightest tail I had ever seen! The morning air was a "cool" 75 degrees, but soon after the sun rose the heat and humidity became oppressive. By the time I arrived in Newton it was 107 degrees in the shade! Coincidentally, I cycled 107 miles that day..and also passed the halfway point of my trip...2,000 miles!

My destination was the home of a Mennonite couple, Dave and Cookie, who invite cyclists to stay in their home free of charge. They were like angels to this weary cyclist and two others that night...providing cold drinks, a shower, and a feast of food...tomatoes and potatoes from their garden, homemade bread (from hand-milled wheat) and sausage, beans, cheese, popcorn, etc...and a place to sleep. After dinner they filled a large wading pool with cold tap water and we all sat in the pool chatting and cooling off until bedtime. Unfortunately, I left too early in the morning to enjoy Cookie's "power smoothies" and Dave's fresh-ground coffee. Thank you Dave and Cookie for your hospitality!

A word about shade in Kansas: NONE! Correct me if I'm wrong...there are millions of haystacks in Kansas and virtually no shade trees along the roads, so I'm guessing that the genesis of the "needle in a haystack" saying is this: Finding a shade tree in Kansas is like looking for a needle in a haystack.

The ONE spot of shade I found was in a roadside picnic area...and I promptly fell asleep on a picnic table. Ask anyone who knows me and they will verify that I was actually asleep by the time my camera's 10 second timer took the above photo!

I was finally "rescued" from the heat wave on day 46 in Girard, Kansas when Roxie, a friend of my sister Melanie, picked me up and drove me to her home for a much-needed break.

 
 
 
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