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PostHeaderIcon Last Chapter: Pony Express Bike Ride

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It's time again for the next, and last, chapter of the Pony Express bicycle adventure. I'm not one to shout out like this but many have expressed an interest in my goofy journey and some have even enjoyed the travel blog. Who knew? So, here it is again.

In case you missed it...during the past 2 summers I've spent 15 days and 1480 miles following the historic Pony Express trail alone on my bike. It's a bit roundabout and not at all direct as it runs 2000 miles from Sacramento, Calif. to St. Joseph, Missouri. After 2 weeks of pedaling I've reached Scottsbluff, Nebraska...just across the Wyoming border. Most of those days spent riding through the endless mountain passes and valleys of California, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming.

The last week of riding, Phase 3 as it's called, takes me across Nebraska and Kansas, America's Central Plains, to finish in St. Joseph, Missouri, the terminus of the old 1860s route and home to the Pony Express Museum.

The plan is to cycle the 630 miles from Scottsbluff to St. Jo' in 6 days with overnight stops in small towns along the way. The Platte River will be my guide, as it was for the real Pony Express riders, for the first 3 days. Beyond that various other river valleys will eventually lead to the Missouri River and St. Joseph.

Six days on a bicycle crossing Tornado Alley at the height of tornado season sounds dubious, but I have a strategy: I'll begin riding each day at sunrise to finish by early afternoon and, with some luck, before the severe weather gets cranked up.

This adventure is solo and unsupported and has already offered its share of difficult challenges and fantastic triumphs. Turns out riding across the country alone on a bicycle is a wonderful way to take it all in. My view is a different one. I am not “seeing” the country from 37,000' nor from an air conditioned car driving down the interstate, Unstead I am experiencing it all from back country roads at 15-20 mph where the scenes, sounds, scents, weather, creatures and the occasional local make every mile memorable. I now look forward to seeing what Nebraska and Kansas have to offer.

I will dust off the blog and add some more daily highlights. If you're interested you can follow along through June 8 at http://bensponyexpress.blogspot.com. -BC

 

Last Updated (Thursday, 05 June 2014 22:33)

 
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