Length of the State of Utah Bicycle Trip

Tuesday, September 19th 2006


We got up, ate a great breakast at the Thunderbird Restaurant, checked out of the motel, and continued on our way at 10:30 AM. 


Ready to start the 2000 foot climb?  Where did Aere go?


We had a long, steady climb of about 20 miles, all the way to Long Valley Junction.  Fortunately, it was mostly rideable, but it was the “Energizer Hill” that kept going, and going…


Time for a rest stop


Thankfully, we had a tail-wind.  The only problem with the tail-wind is that while you toil uphill, you have little air blowing over you, and it gets hot! 


Knowing we would end up at 7000 ft. altitude, I had dressed warmly, with two layers of top.  Soon, I was hot, and looking for a convenience store restroom, where I could remove one of the layers.  In spite of some towns, there were no stores, and I finally went behind a tree to take off my extra top. 


Looking back after more uphill


Looking back downhill


At long last (with a few stretches too steep to cycle, where we both had to get off and push), we reached Long Valley Junction at 4:00 PM.  We stopped and snacked at the convenience store there.  We were thinking it was four more miles to the summit, but the summit was right there.  Then it was mostly an exhilarating downhill glide for a very long way onward, with a tail-wind no less! 


Soon we encountered the Sevier River, which Malcolm noted was flowing north, contradicting what his geography teacher had declared, years ago. 


Downhill, getting toward Panguitch in the lengthening afternoon shadows


We arrived at Panguitch at 6:45 PM, and got a motel for the evening. 


There was a Cowboy Barbeque restaurant across the street, and it must have been good (judging from the line of people waiting to get a seat).  Not wanting to stand around waiting, we went up the street to a fast-food place, which had a surprisingly good Mexican meal option, and I could get my usual caramel malt with extra malt. 


On this day, we travelled 49.8 miles, at an average speed of 8.9 MPH.  The bicycles were moving five hours and 37 minutes.  We took 8 hours and 15 minutes doing it (including rest stops).


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