Mercy Riders

Pushing pedals, pushing hope

June 28, One Year Later

This day I take my time somewhat in the morning because the route along 24 goes through Capitol Reef National Park along route 24, and if you like riding past massive orange rock formations, this is your place.

Early morning ride through Capitol Reef National Park

Early morning ride through Capitol Reef National Park

The group is a good chunk in front of me when we go through Hanksville.  I follow the bend in the road and don’t know if they’re ahead of me or if they stopped and I passed them.  There was what looked like a crest in the road ahead, so I kept going.  They had stopped.  I hadn’t heard or seen them as I went by.  It was getting REALLY hot.  I had my camelback and two water bottles, and we were due a stop by our SAG.  I kept going.  It got hotter.  I got nervous.  Cars with boats were passing me so I figured I was close to some kind of civilization.  Not so.  I was running low on water.  I passively would hold my bottle up as cars past but no one took the hint.  I passed over a large culvert and stopped.  I dropped the bike there at the side of the road in case the group caught up to me.  I went under the road where it was bone dry, but shady.  I applied more sunscreen, and rested a little, ate a banana, then got back on the bike.  The rest of the gang soon caught up, as did the SAG.  There was water but not much ice. Sandwiches which are made on the spot taste different. Bread in the bag is fine, but once you take it out and prepare a sandwich, they turns into a Triscuits, the low fat no salt kind.

We were on a bit of a long decent.  The temperature continues to rise.  By the time we’re at the bridge over Lake Powell, the air temperature is 112 degrees. There’s not much wind. Going by some of the rock formations is even hotter. We find a small shelter at an air strip at the side of the road. Both SAG van and car idle as different members sit in the AC. There’s still about 40 miles to go, and where we were was not at all condusive to camping. 3, me included, decide to SAG to the intended campsite, 3 SAG up the mountain about 15 miles and ride from there, and Keith decides to ride the 40 miles. He finds that this wasn’t the greatest of ideas later.

Taking a break

Taking a break