Salisbury Beach

Salisbury Beach
Thank You Katie, Mary, Caitlin and Brian

Friday, May 6, 2011

6 May 2011 Fast America Day 13

Liberal, KS to Dodge City, KS

Mileage:                     84.56 miles
Riding Time:              4:02     Riding Speed 20.9 mph
Total Time:                 4:30
Climbing:                    1060 ft.
Flats:                           0

I uploaded a few pictures:

Today was different. It was only 84 miles, and the wind was at our backs most of the time (it was from the SSW and when we turned E for about 20 miles, it was pretty much a crosswind). There was no climbing whatsoever. Couple of observations: the grass on the side of the roads in Kansas ripples gracefully in the breeze, while the grass in Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico simply sits there. Also telephone poles in California are installed eight or ten to the mile, while they are twenty to the mile in Kansas (I’m trying to pay attention to my surroundings and not just the patch of road in front of my nose).

There was only one SAG stop, for lunch, at the Dalton Gang Hideout in Meade, KS. Apparently the Dalton brothers terrorized the west for two years in the early 1990s, while operating out of the home of their sister Eva in Meade. When Eva moved out and the boys were killed/jailed, authorities came in and found a tunnel under the house where they hid whenever Eva had visitors.

So I was in to Dodge City by about 12:30, with time to sit in the Jacuzzi, take a swim, and walk downtown and visit the Boot Hill Museum. Many of the readers of this blog grew up on Gunsmoke; what is amazing is that the period of time captured by that show was only about five years. Then there was another five years during which 60 MILLION Buffalo were slaughtered, and the nomadic Indians were carted off to reservations. Five more years of cattle drives (Texas confederate soldiers returned home after the civil war to find that their longhorn cattle had multiplied like bunnies in their absence, and they had to do something with them). The cattle drives ended with an epidemic that required the cattle to be quarantined. Thinking about that pace of change makes current immigration issues sound trivial, and provides lots of food for thought as we address the possibility of mass human migrations due to climate change in the next hundred years.

It was a fun and contemplative day, but it also made me glad that I was doing such an aggressive ride; I don’t think that I would enjoy these half day rides every day!

But there is another one tomorrow: only 84 miles to Great Bend. Depending on winds, however, it could be much more difficult than today. There are a number of people with aches pains and swollen body parts, but I am doing fine.

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