Oct 13, Limon, Colorado

I left Denver Tuesday morning heading East. It is always really challenging to ride out of a big city: traffic lights, cars, sidewalks. It seems to take a lot of energy to go even a small distance. Finally, I exited the city and got onto a proper highway, although it was still called Colfax Avenue (one of the longest streets in the US). Not the prettiest place I’ve biked in, but it really feels like home–endless prairies and small quiet towns. Heaven.
A very quiet place to live

A very quiet place to live

After a bit, I noticed a loud periodic squeaking sound coming from my rear wheel. Somehow, I’d picked up a goathead thorn and it was rubbing against the rear fender. I didn’t even bother to check for a leak–I just removed the wheel and replaced the tube. Later, a close inspection of the tube revealed a very respectable puncture. My first flat tire in over 5000 miles!
I stopped to camp in the town of Strasburg, CO, at a KOA campground. Yikes! After nearly 3 months of camping in Europe, I was used to paying a reasonable rate to pitch my tent. $40 is what I paid KOA to “Kamp.” On top of that, nothing worked–the swimming pool, spa and apparently, even the internet had been decommissioned for the winter. I will say this–the staff was very friendly, which actually counts for quite a lot. But $40? No way. At that rate, I’ll break myself.
My friend, Paul, made a gift of a nice bottle of scotch to keep me warm–and what a nice one at that! The Scotch is older than 18 years, but I have since learned that only the time in the barrel counts; the taste will not improve with age once it is put in the bottle.
Thanks, Paul!

Thanks, Paul!

That night, it rained quite a bit and I had a very cold morning getting packed up for the ride into Limon. I had a light, but persistent headwind as I headed southeast. I had picked a route that paralleled I70 until the town of Deer Trail, where I had planned to head due east for a while on farming roads, avoiding the interstate traffic. I inquired with a local, however, who said that those roads barely even qualified as “dirt” roads. So, I opted to take the interstate instead, using frontage roads where I could. It was noisy, but I would not have made it to Limon before dark otherwise.
As I approached Limon, I tried to contact my WarmShowers host family–Ellie and Warren Bontrager–who had offered to put me up for two nights. I did not have an address–generally, they send that to you through a private message. I had not yet received that and figured that I’d probably have to go to a hotel if we did not connect.
Earlier that morning, I found several large bills of Gibraltar Sterling and Swiss Francs in one of my bags. I had already given Heidi some of these to convert to dollars, and I figured I’d mail her the rest. I stopped in the town of Agate and went into the post office. As I walked into the post office, I was greeted by a nice woman who said, “Dr. Acton I presume?” It was Ellie Bontrager! What a coincidence!
This morning I rode over to the local Junior/High School to give two lectures to two different Earth Science classes. These were very good audiences, well behaved and intelligent.
Future scientists at the Limon School.

Future scientists at the Limon School.

Tomorrow, I will continue to ride southeast, along US Highway 287 to Kit Carson. The weather is supposed to be good, but winds will be out of the southeast, so I will need to make an early start of it, or I will be fighting headwinds all the way. Until next time,

2 Responses to “Oct 13, Limon, Colorado

  • Kathy Clucas
    2 years ago

    Yikes! It might be worth staying in a cheap hotel if you are paying those kinds of rates just to camp! I’m glad you connected with Ellie. Coincidence? Nah,😊 Love you Scott!

  • Good ol’ Colorado goatheads. Gotta love em!

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