Day 6 - Winslow to Gallup

Greetings from New Mexico folks! I am currently sitting on my bed next to my dad as he sleeps soundly after a long day under the hot Arizona/New Mexico sun. I have to admit it won't be long until I get horizontal myself. It's been a long day out on the road.      

Today's ride put the "endure" in endurance. We made it to our third state of the trip as we took on I-40 East for over 134 miles on our way to Gallup, New Mexico. It was an unbroken, monotonous grind that put our patience and fortitude to the test as we rode under the clear blue sky. Aside from the occasional curious cow wandering across the vast open plains dominating either side of the highway, there really wasn't much to distinguish one exit from the next.      

The highlight of my day was definitely getting to stand on that corner in Winslow Arizona this morning as we headed out of town. I've always been a huge Eagles fan thanks to my mom's passion for classic rock, and to stand on such an iconic spot in rock history was really something special.      

It was cold out this morning as we dressed down our bikes and gathered supplies for the long ride ahead. I could even see my breath misting in the desert air as my dad helped me check my tires for any wear and tear. We had a lot of flat flat tires among the group during today's ride, including a broken wheel that took my Australian friend Max out of the ride for the rest of the day. I myself had my third flat of the trip, and got a crash course in tire changing which was pretty cool. You would think that a kid getting ready to ride his bike cross-country would know a thing or two about changing tires!      

But like my dad always likes to say "no time like the present!" It was a real thrill to be able to get some first hand experience. I'm sure that by the end of this ride I'll be a tire changing expert.        

Seeing the sign greeting us into New Mexico was an uplifting sight indeed. After riding for over 100 miles and seeing basically an unchanging landscape, this sign was proof that we had indeed made progress in our journey. Sometimes it's the little visuals that can keep a guy going long after he thinks he should call it a day.      

On another note, one of the other cool things about today's journey is that we crossed our first time zone. It's cool because this really proves that we are making it out across the country, but it's also a bummer because we are going to be losing an hour of sleep tonight.      

Speaking of sleep, I think it's about time I killed the light and called it a day. Tomorrow we have one more big ride of around the same distance as today. Luckily we will keep a nice flat surface to ride on all the way to Albuquerque, New Mexico. And then the next day we finally have a day off to rest these weary legs and recuperate from the past week. As much as I have been loving this ride, I think a little R&R is just what the doctor ordered.      

Until next time.

Danielle Rivenbark