Old Flying Farts Bicycling Club
Pueblo, CO to Lamar, Co

Today was the day we  hope for good weather and a tailwind as we left Pueblo, CO and headed to the Kansas border.  We got the nice weather but a crosswind to go with it. 
We were on track to do a real good 100 mile ride:  50 miles is 2hrs 14minutes, 65 miles in 3hrs and then my luck ran out;  my lower back muscles started cramping and the crosswinds started.  It was a tough 35 miles but did complete it.  Don finished in 5hrs and 7 minutes and I was 5hrs and 13 minutes.  NOT my best 100 miler but conditions have to better to get under 5 hrs!

Not really an exciting day for scenery...it was just grasslands and railroad cars the whole 100 miles.  This is what  I fear it will be like in Kansas--corn, corn, corn, cows, corn.

Here is a description of the TransAmerica Route from Pueblo, CO to Yorktown, VA:
Pueblo offers bike shops and great places to eat; it also serves as the halfway point of the TransAm Trail (time to celebrate!). It's a good place to stock up -- it's the largest city you'll pass through until Carbondale, Illinois.

Things start to dry out as you get into the eastern part of Colorado and cross into western Kansas. Carrying extra water is a good idea here -- this is hot, barren country. Right around Haswell, Colorado, you'll see your last hazy glimpse of the Rocky Mountains. Overnights at city parks in Kansas are usually accompanied by cool dips in the city swimming pools. You might have to do some early morning and early evening riding to escape the midday heat. Don't miss the pies at Cookie's in Golden City, Missouri! The flat-as-a-pool-table terrain of the Great Plains will change quickly into the roller-coaster riding of Missouri. You'll find Missouri offers Civil War history, terrific canoeing (at Eminence), and an excellent swimming hole (Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park).

The route crosses the Mississippi River at Chester, Illinois, and heads into Carbondale, another fun college town. A ferry takes you across the Ohio River into Kentucky, where you'll enjoy the evening fireflies at your campsites. Kentucky offers rolling white-fenced farms and woodlands until reaching Berea, the gateway to the Appalachian Mountains. A loop south of the route will take you to see Mammoth Caves National Park, the longest cave system in the world. Past Berea, you'll spend some time ascending and descending the mountains of the Appalachians, and riding part of the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia. The mountains turn to rolling hills and then flat riding through lush plantations and farmlands. The last stretch of the route is rich in the history of the American Revolution, with Colonial Williamsburg as the highlight. Yorktown, situated on the Chesapeake Bay, is the route's end.

Some stretches of the western portion of the route follow large river valleys and can be generally flat, but expect some climbing almost every day between Astoria, Oregon, and Pueblo, Colorado. The passes throughout the Rocky Mountains are generally long but not terribly steep. The descents from these passes are, of course, a blast. Most of Kansas is beautifully flat. Missouri through the Ozarks and eastern Kentucky through the Appalachians offers short, steep climbs. The Virginia portion of the route, surprisingly, has more total elevation gain than any other state.

Camping choices will vary across the country between small private campgrounds, city parks, state and national parks, national forests, and the occasional back yard. The northern Oregon coast is a heavily traveled tourist route and is flush with camping and service opportunities. From Oregon eastward through Kansas, you'll find services limited mainly to the towns along the route. Carrying extra water in the West is a good plan. Camping options improve once you're in the Rockies, but you should still expect some long stretches between accommodations and services. Options will increase near tourist areas such as Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Kansas is legendary for its hospitality. Camping in city parks is the norm through Kansas and Missouri. Food, water, and overnight accommodations are abundant from Missouri to Virginia.
sarah Ashbaugh
7/14/2010 02:06:09 am

Hey Pat! I have enjoyed reading your blog the last couple of weeks! You are such a good writer and I can imagine that I am on your trip (I have a good imagination lol. I have never biked probably a mile). You definitely are an inspiration to be more active though! Great job!
Ps when will you be in Williamsburg? I may be heading there in a couple of weeks to visit some friends. It is one of my favorite places in the US (I lived there for like 2 years) and I will probably move back there when I finish my masters.
Keep up the good work!
Sarah Ashbaugh <3

3/13/2011 05:27:02 pm

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