Megan and I have been off the road for about 2 weeks now. After hitching into Flagstaff we nursed our bruised adventure bones with ample locally brewed beer and pizza. Being a poorfessional cyclist is hard work. We caught the last farmers market of the season and charmed the local (actually) homeless population into telling us about the good local camping. Downtown Flagstaff is located not far from Coconino National Forest and so the first few nights we made our 5 mile commute to a campsite in the shadow of Mount Humphreys. Were we more energetic bagging the highest point in the state would have been fun, but our prodigious supplies of vim and vigor bled out in the Navajo Nation and watered the infinite fields of sagebrush and goat heads.
Incidentally, the Navajo Nation was not as bad as white folks liked to tell me. I’m about halfway done writing up our time there, as I am with my time anywhere in the Southwest. Summary: Good people in a bad situation. No water.
Wind was so bad and our sleep so poor that for the first time (well second time, but that was because its illegal to ride through the Zion tunnel) in nearly 12,000 miles I hitched to my destination. We’re cooling our heels in Flagstaff for a bit, and I truly hope to write something substantial but we need to find computer access for great than hour.
Sometimes people insist that I must miss sleeping in a soft bed. Not really, but tonight we’ve sprung for shelter for the first time since Seattle. Why? Exhaustion. We’ve been riding and hiking non stop for a few weeks pushing from Nevada to Zion to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Up and down the grand staircase. At the moment we’re near the bottom, I think, and looking across the start of the Grand Canyon into the Navajo nation.
What next? Before we disappear here’s the plan: ride east to canyon de chelly and then south to Tucson or flagstaff where we intend to hop a train back to Pittsburgh. Originally we had thought crossing the rockies to Denver would be a good idea but the higher elevations are already getting snowed on and we’re not prepared to handle that. It’s just as well because I routinely feel as though I’m on my last legs and so crossing high passes is less appealing than it was in the past. What a year, enough to satiate even my wanderlust and ADHD. Just a few weeks and maybe 1,000 miles to go!