Brianís Cross-USA Bicycle Tour

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© 2001,

Day 30 - Tuesday, July 17, 2001
Leiter to Gillette, WY
60 miles

The morning started off with whatever I wanted for breakfast - there was no breakfast menu. I got tater tots instead of home fries - "they cook faster".  Well, it's still a potato thingie, so I won't complain.

The route was still sort of flat for the first 10 miles, as the road followed the railroad tracks. Then the tracks went one way and the road the other, and then the rolling hills came again. My AAA map showed that I had passed through a town called Kendrick, but I didn't see anything and my other Wyoming map didn't show it.

It also got real hot really quick, and there was no chance of afternoon thunderstorms to cool things off. Rapid City was forecasted to reach 100 degrees, although northeastern Wyoming was supposed to be lower.

After 24 miles came what would be the only services on today's ride (other than Gillette) - Spotted Horse. Spotted Horse is another one building town. The lunch special was chicken fried steak with corn and mashed potatoes. This wasn't quite like the chicken fried steak I had in Houston 11 years ago - this was more like a hamburger patty with gravy on it, which was still good because I was hungry.

They were running out of food - no fries, onion rings, or tater tots - they have to drive to Leiter to pick up the food, as the delivery truck doesn't go all the way to Spotted Horse.

I've been finding that the hardest part about eating in these small towns is that it's all American food! Sometimes you want Chinese or Mexican or whatever...

After Spotted Horse is was 36 miles of nothingness to Gillette. The last 15 of these miles was into a stiff headwind. Today and yesterday have been the toughest two days of the trip for me. I guess with a long trip like this there are going to be highs and lows, and this was definitely a low. No, I didn't eat the freeze dried ice cream I got as a going away gift (for times like these), because I forgot I had it!

It was interesting to see the coal mining and the gas recovery facilities on the ride to Gillette.

The folks in Leiter had suggested I get to Gillette no later than 4 PM, as the methane truck drivers stop at Spotted Horse for a few cold ones before making the drive home to Gillette. This was a non-issue since the road got wider getting closer to town.

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