Fair Grove to Ash Grove
Ash Grove Rest Day!!!!
Ash Grove to Golden City
Golden City to Pittsburg
Hartville to Fair Grove wasn't too bad of a ride. I believe in this area I was on a plateau, so the hills weren't killer. I took my first break at a church that had every flavor Capri Sun! I sucked down a few then continued on my way. My next break was in Marshfield. I took a nap under a church awning. The sun was pretty intense that day. The mild summer is fading and temps are rising. After Marshfield I continued on to Fair Grove. A nice little town that lets you camp behind the historic mill. It was a nice evening; the end of the day when I reach my destination is my favorite part of the day. It's tempting to lie down and close your eyes but there's still cooking and tent setting up to do.
Fair Grove to Ash Grove was terribly difficult. Although there was a general decent from the plateau, the hills have returned. As well as ten mph head winds. I pumped up my tires, ate my oatmeal and headed out of town. I took my first break at a church and munched on some cookies and chocolate milk. My next break was beneath a tree in a driveway of an abandoned house. The neighbors saw me and invited me over to fill my water bottles from their well. The well water was refreshingly cold. I had a stomach ache for most of the day. I think it may have been the chocolate milk? It caused me to not eat this day. Other than the ice cream cone I bought at my next stop. I wasn't going to stop but I saw a cyclists' bike leaning against the side of a middle of nowhere gas station. It's nice to say hello to fellow riders. I went in got my ice cream and met a east bound rider. He had heard about me from Jordan and Chelsea, the cyclists I met back in Houston, MO. He was really impressed with the amount of weight I was hauling. After ice cream conversations I headed west. My next stop was in Walnut Grove. I bought another ice cream. Then rode the last eight miles to Ash Grove. The park for cyclists to camp in has showers and a swimming pool! I haven't showered since I left southern Illinois. It was incredible to take a shower. That evening was the high school homecoming football game. I could hear it from the park.
Ash Grove rest day. This rest day was planned. It was supposed to be my one for the week. It ended up being my second because of Alley Springs earlier this week. It rained in the early morning hours. Mostly just a cloudy day. I'm happy I'm not riding today as the winds are twenty mph today. An awesome breeze on a 90 degree day. Today I picked up a resupply box. It got me thinking that I carry too many days worth of food. This was necessary while hiking but I can get to a store far easier now. I'm just relaxing by the pool and resting my legs. Going to wash my clothes in the shower later. Rest days are great.
Tomorrow is my last day in Missouri. Looking at my elevation chart it will be a challenge. Looking at the weather, I'll have 10mph headwinds. Just one more day though. Then flat Kansas! I'm super excited for Kansas. I'm camping by five lakes while there. It may cause me to take extra rest days for some water relaxation.
I headed out of Ash Grove Sunday morning. I rode until I hit Pennsboro, there was a small church there. As I parked under a shade tree, service was letting out. It was a hot day and I needed to refill my water bottles. Most cars had driven away and I asked the last woman there if I may go inside for water. She turned out to be the pastor's wife. She told me that they didn't have running water but had plenty of bottles in the refrigerator. She told me that they keep the doors unlocked and I could go in, help myself and take a rest from the heat. I went inside and was charging my phone, eating chocolates from the fridge when she returned. She brought me a sandwich, chips, an apple, banana and two granola bars! It was so nice. After lunch I headed back on the road. After Pennsboro there were only three more climbs then mostly flat. Almost to Golden City I took a rest beneath a tree and noticed I had a flat tire on the trailer. The treads were showing and the tube inside was flat. I replaced the tube and hoped the tire wouldn't come apart on me. I made it to Golden City, found a church and enjoyed some cookies and ice cream. There was a couch that Brown and I shared that evening.
Monday morning I headed out relatively early. Met an eastbound biker just outside of town and chatted for a bit. He gave me gorilla tape for my tire. I didn't use it because I was pretty sure I could make it thirty miles to the next town and bike shop. With mostly flat terrain and only mild headwinds I made it to town rather quickly. Unfortunately when I got to town I realized that the bike shop is closed on Mondays. So I figured I'd camp in town and go to the shop in the am. Unfortunately they don't open until 10am. Fortunately there's a sonic in town. Lemon berry slushies know how to cheer me up. For most of the day, I just chilled in the park. Sometimes it feels like a waste when you're not moving but sometimes you can appreciate the stillness.
I named my bike today. Kamots (kuh-motz). It means "freedom" in Blackfoot.
Thank you readers.