Brianís Cross-USA Bicycle Tour
Day 57 - Monday, August 13, 2001
(Apologies in advance to non-bike people for the excessive technical content for this update.)
No more rivers to follow on this part of the route; therefore, I was in cornfields for most of the day.
I had a minor problem with the cleat on my right shoe. The part of the cleat that restricts the float unscrewed itself from the bottom of the cleat, leaving a bare screw sticking out of the bottom (pictures will clarify this when I get home). Not a major problem - tonight in camp I scavenged the missing part from the old cleats I've been carrying around.
Speaking of the Speedplay Frog cleats, I have found the wear to be a bit excessive. When touring, they wear the fastest at the part that restricts the float. [These are the old style cleats, the new style seems to be much improved in this area.] I put new cleats on in Sioux City, IA and my heels were already hitting the cranks by the Illinois/Indiana border. Swapping the cleats between the left and right shoes solved the problem OK.
I went to Fremont Schwinn to pick up a couple of things that I forgot to ask Dan to get for me. There are a few bike shops in Southern California that still have the Schwinn name, but they've kept up with the times with respect to parts, etc. This has generally not been the case for rural dealers with the Schwinn name, but Fremont Schwinn was an exception. They had the unusually long spare spokes I needed, 306 mm and 308 mm (due to the 36 hole, 4 cross, 27 inch wheel). They even had the spare Speedplay Frog shoe cleats I needed! I was talking with the owner and he said they were one of the first places to stock mountain bikes in the 80s, during that period he drew business from a larger radius that included Toledo. They also had a neat rear taillight, website www.necessaryoptions.com.
There was a short seven mile trail from Fremont to Clyde along an active rail right of way. Don't worry, there were trees forming a buffer between the tracks and the trail.
At the end of the day I made it to the town of Huron, which is on Lake Erie. A big body of water at last! Then it will be mostly US 6 along the lake into Cleveland. Actually "along the lake" is a misnomer, as the view of the lake is often obscured by the houses and trees between the road and the lake.
The new rear wheel from Chicago has held out well so far. Only in the past couple of days has it gone even the slightest bit out of true, but still within acceptable limits. Today it had developed a big wobble - tightening up the one loose spoke restored it to yesterday's level of trueness. It should be OK now, I'll have to keep an eye on it.
The campground east of Huron is a little expensive, at $15 a tent site. I'm not surprised before this is the last campsite before Cleveland. At least they have a private beach on the lake.
Now that the sun just went down, the wind is picking up off the lake. Brrr. Back to the tent...