Cheyenne to Wheatland

P8160703.JPG

The first day back on the bikes was another detour fest which eventually ended on Telephone “road”, a tractor path through some beautiful rolling hills.  We found a random Calf who was stuck on the wrong side of the fence and he was so scared of us that he jumped through a  barbed wire fence to get back on the other side.  Eventually, we decided to camp on the road in some beautiful country and had the howling wind and phenominal stars to keep us company.

P8160708.JPGP8160704.JPG

P8160717.JPG
Canned tuna and rice… standard dinner.

P8160719.JPG

P8160720.JPG
Telephone Road

P8170723.JPG

The next day was a big day of riding, 69miles total!  We don’t typically do a lot of miles per day, we are more in it for the experiences and serendipitous events like spending the night at a winery.

P8170725.JPG

After rolling to Chugwater, WY pop 212, we grabbed some chili dogs at the only place in town and met some less than kind locals who made it a point to speak loudly about how people travelling for the eclipse better stay the hell off their land.  We originally planned to stay in Chugwater but instead rode another 30 miles to Wheatland.  Along the way, we finally learned what the mystery fences were… Snowdrift fences.

P8170731.JPG

 

The ride from Chugwater to Wheatland was tough, there was some serious wind and not much in the way of scenery.  We passed some interesting compounds that were a mystery.  Originally we thought they were old rodeo rings, but then realized they were old underground bunkers for ICBMs.  There were constant Huey helicopters flying around taking the crews to the remote locations to sit alert waiting​ for WWIII!  We were dead tired and got caught in a big wind storm that knocked Lauren off her bike.  Also it caused a giant coal cloud to blow in front of us from the power plant.

Eventually we rolled into town and had some great dinner and brews at Windy Peaks.  Our bartender Stevie was awesome.  We talked all night and decided to go back the next day to get some more info from her and plan the trip up the mountain.  We camped for free in the local town park which had a few spots for RVs and a couple of tent sites too.  The next day we found out the park was closed for camping so they could charge for the eclipse, but the guy who took care of the park was cool and said we could stay for free.  We hung out in the park and hit up the public pool that was 200 yards away.  We did cannonballs off the high dive and rode the water slides because, why not!?!  It was a pretty relaxing few days.  By the time we left Wheatland, we were the talk of the town.  At breakfast on the way out of town, the waitress asked if we were the folks riding bicycles up to the eclipse.

There were a few bad apples who clearly were not interested in people visiting their town from out of state.  One guy at the liquor store said “I heard folks from Colorado were emailing ranchers saying, we are gonna camp on your land and there is nothing you can do about it!”  No… no that never happened.  There were some dipshits, but we met kind folks as well.  Stevie offered to drive us up the mountain but we politely declined and explained that the whole point of the trip was to ride.  When we got to the summit we realized why she offered.

 

 

 

Wyoming!

P8130664.JPGAfter the run in with the Ranger, we were not in the highest spirits.  The singletrack at red canyon was HARD!  We climbed literally the entire way which included a deep sand arroyo for over a mile and several miles of switchbacks going straight up the side of a mountain.  It was amazing scenery but challenging riding (walking).

P8130669.JPGP8130673.JPGP8130682.JPGP8130680.JPGP8130683.JPGP8130685.JPGP8130687.JPGP8130691.JPGP8130665.JPG

Eventually we made it to some railroad tracks which had an access road running next to them.  We did have to jump a fence that was locked but it was locked to keep people out of where we were so we figured it was ok.  Lauren started talking about hamburgers and we decided a detour to Cheyenne was in order.  We started heading east and discovered what rolling hills in Wyoming really means.

P8160697.JPG

We learned that railroad tracks are a great option for bikepacking and were not worried about getting yelled at because all of the train engineers tooted the horn and waved at us.  We saw tons of pronghorn and wondered what the hell these giant random 8 foot tall fences were for miles.

fencenew

There were ant attacks and debates about the route and it eventually ended with a glorious 8 mile downhill on a calm pavement road straight into Cheyenne. For the first time we spun out our highest gear.  We stopped at a hotel and took a Lyft into town to Sanford’s which had phenominal burgers and some well deserved beers.  We met a nice guy from Ohio who was travelling to Utah to help his son move into his dorm at college and proceeded to solve all the worlds problems right there at the bar.

One rest day turned into two due to an 80% chance of severe thunderstorms and we layed around and watched bad TV, ate at chain restaurants, and lived the American Dream for 48 hours.