Day 64 – The Lone Star State (January 4, 2021)

Night 64- Knippa, Texas

Okay, so yesterday was a few things.

It started cold because the desert.
It became the hottest day so far, because the desert.
It was of the longer days at 85 miles because we want to get across this state.
It was a rough day on a rough surfaced road.
It was a pain in the neck because of 3 flat tires.
And it was one of the the longest days, mentally, because of all the above.

It wasn’t all bad though.

We took off towards downtown San Antonio with a bit of a cold breeze, but never a real wind. Looking at the map, somehow it was faster and shorter to ride to the Alamo than it was the default route Google gave us… so now I can remember the Alamo. It was cool, but what really made the morning a nice start was the river walk…

It was so nice. There was only a handful of people around. Not that we were going fast or anything. In fact I slowed down quite a few times to take pictures. By that point the sun was really warming up and we stayed cool riding along the water and between the buildings. I could enjoy the San Antonio area.

As we passed the commerce road, things started tapering out and the road opened up. We would pass through a few distant suburb complexes, but other than the odd gas station, this was it.

Open road for the next 60 miles. We had three hills to climb. Each a few hundred feet, but the rest was just a climb. And so we went. Just pushing miles with the hot sun to our left.

Original eta was 6. We wouldn’t arrive at our host until 8:20. We did stop for 20 minutes to cool off under a pavilion and a rest room stop later in the day… but then there were more flats for me.

The sun was setting and we were climbing our last hill when I got my last flat. My front tire. For the first time in weeks, I got a flat that was an actual puncture! I was so excited. I COULD EASILY PATCH THIS ONE! I just wish it didn’t cost us the last bit of light before descending put last hill… and 20 miles to go.

That last hour was numbing. The shoulder got tighter. The light was gone. The surface shook our bikes and bodies. I passed the time spotting deer and spooking them with various noises. It just felt like forever.

Then we made it. Turned twice and we were home. And home is how it truly felt. Our hosts, the Vanderweir’s, were incredible. I nearly cried. A close family full of individuals. It really seemed like they all had their specialties and hobbies. The dad was our contact and the cyclist. Just an excellent bunch with a little bit of everything to talk about. So calling it a night knowing we had an early morning was pretty rough. Waking up was going to be tricky because we got the art/clubhouse out back. Pretty well sealed up, we were warm and it was dark.

So here I am now. Eating breakfast burritos and waiting for the morning sun to warm things up before we take off. 80 miles to Del Rio. A long and very straightforward day. No Alamo. No rivers. No cities to navigate. Just the road to Del Rio.

Have a great day everyone. I’ve had my warm drink to the day, have you?

As usual-

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