Sunday, July 28, 2013
Farson to Pinedale, Wyoming July 25
July 25, 60 miles in 4:30------Buddy rode the entire distance, breaking his personal furthest ride (yesterday's 45 miles), by fifteen miles. He's done 105 miles with me in two days. It was a good time for him to do that distance because we once again had a flat ride. US191 has been following plateaus, or river valleys, or whatever, but it has been flat and fast. Yesterday we had a tailwind, and today we really had just the slightest of headwinds. We have been a above 7000 ft for the whole trip from Rock Springs, and the air is really thin up here, so when the wind blows, it just doesn't have any oomph. A head wind doesn't even bother me, even if its blowing 20-25 like it was the other day in Cheyenne.
Today's scenery was rather bland, in what they call the 'cold desert'. The temp didn't even hit 80 today. We are in the desert, but there are definitely no more prickly pear cactus or lizards like we were seeing further south. We did have some interesting animal encounters however. Pronghorns are as common here as they are anywhere in the country, and we saw our share. One was right by the road, and we road within 25 ft of him, while he just stood there and looked at us. That was cool, but not the best sighting of the day. We had a big fox run across the road right in front of us, and stop to check us out, and that gave us time to get a really good look at him. It was reddish brown in color, and it was the tallest, biggest fox I have ever seen. If coyotes are reddish brown, it was as big as the coyote I saw in New Mexico. We are betting it was a fox though.
We also saw several very historic markers. Even though there was not much to look at, the Oregon, California, and Mormon Trails crossed our path today, and they are three of the busiest trails that took wagon trains east to west back in the 1800's. There was one place where a crossing was marked, and in the distance you could see the trail, with the original wagon ruts are still very apparent after 150 years. I zoomed in and got a good picture from a distance. Not much to look at , until you think of the historical significance of what you were looking at. Personally, I never thought I would see wagon wheel tracks from the 1800's. It just doesn't rain or snow enough here to wash any of the traces away.
During our entire trip yesterday and today, there was always a mountain range within view to our right. It was the Wind River mountain range, which I had never heard of, but they were beautiful, especially as we closed in on them. We are pretty close to them as we sit in Pinedale, and we can see the highest point in Wyoming, at 13,800 ft, which is higher than the Grand Tetons that we will be seeing in a couple of days. There are many 11-12000 ft peaks that all still have some snow on them. I didn't take pictures because of the haze and low clouds that have been on them, but tonight the sun finally lit them up, and pictures will be tomorrow, hopefully.