Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ely, NV

We have made it to Ely, Nevada.. the border is getting closer and closer. We are excited for Utah, although it is rumored not to be much more exciting than NV in terms of scenery, it will feel good to get into another state. Nevada has definetely been a challenge, but it has also been fun. We have met many characters and interesting people, camped alongside the road in ditches and patches of shrubs, have seen some absolutely amazing sunsets, and have spent a night next to our own private hot spring. Hwy 50 is called the loneliest hwy in america, but take it from us there are much lonelier. There is at least one car every 5-10 minutes and that feels like a lot of traffic after we've spent hours on the other smaller highways. We've ridden through towns that don't exist, in fact one of our favorites is Basalt, it is on the map, and when we got there it was nothing but a stop sign. This is not uncommon here in NV, the big towns if we are lucky have a gas station with a mini mart, but most dont even have that. We rode past a town called Marietta which is known for its packs of wild donkeys, and later that day we were very surprised to find a herd of wild horses grazing only 100 yards from the highway. Just past Middlegate there is a tree that is famous for the ridiculous amount of shoes that hang from its branches. The story goes that years ago a newlywed couple were arguing beneath the tree. The wife got so fed up that she threatened to walk back into town on her own, the husband, not wanting the argument to end like that, responded by throwing her shoes in the tree telling her she had to do it barefoot. Since this incident the tree has accumalted hundreds of pairs of footwear, and it is quite a bizarre sight to see in the middle of the desert (let alone a tree at all). The other night we did our first night ride through the desert. We were each equipped with bright headlights, flashing rear lights, and a flashing headlamp. On top of it all we were bumping Daft Punk on the iPod speakers, it was quite a techno rave. With this split riding style (6am-11am and 5pm-9pm) we are able to cover some 60-70 miles a day on average. Once again we are mailing home a lot more stuff. In fact we have ditched our front two bags entirely, and are basically down to one t shirt each, one pair of pants, our riding clothes, and our camping gear, and one pair of boxers. We hope this is our last gear dump. Hopefully our avg. mileage will increase as we figure out how much water we actually need to carry, and after we finish this second bag dump. We are leaving Ely in an hour or two, heading due east. There is strong tailwind right now, we are fully rested, and the sky is overcast which keeps it nice and cool. Our next stop should be Great Basin Natl. Park, which will be the last we see of Nevada. Thanks everyone for the comments and words of encouragement. We do read them, and it does help. After this wed. it will be week three on the road, we will be encroaching on our 1000 mile mark, and we might be able to meet up with some friends on the road (Connor, Paul, Neil & Christie?) Hopefully we will be able to post again soon.


  1. more naked pictures!
    -Chris Gallagher

    -Brian place

    -that one guy in the garage

  2. Heather and I just wrote to you but I think we lost our post!! Oh well. We are very impressed with your distance dudes on two bikes!
    The fam, minus Heather, will breeze by you on Highway 50 going towards Arches National Park next week. We should drive by you next Tuesday or WEdnesday. Remember you have a 10 course meal on us when we meet up with you.
    We love you! Momma Christie and Heather

  3. Forrest DeardorffJune 30, 2009 at 6:13 PM

    Hey guys!! it's Forrest. Wow, i am amazed at your perserverence and courage. You have large balls, not many people have balls as large as your guys's. This must be the greatest adventure you have ever taken on. An audacious enterprise, to say the least. Fuck yeah. You are lucky to have seen wild horses. I wasn't even sure they still existed. So keep up the effort, and have a blast on the journey!!!!

  4. The road isn't flat enough. Seriously, epic.

  5. We love keeping track of you guys....it just sounds fantastic....and looks incredible...(great pictures!)Would love to have seen the wild horses!Can't wait to hear more and am vicariously looking forward to Yellowstone.Take good care. We love you!! CB&JJ

  6. Hi Calen and Nico. This is Tristan. I hope you guys have fun when you get to Utah but just make sure not to run out of water. I can't believe there are that many shoes in one tree. We should keep our shoes in a tree now that we have Osa. I can't wait for you to meet her. She chews everything. Are you going to be naked when you get to Cape Cod? Love Tristan

  7. Wild horse COULD keep me from traveling with you. I like doing it from the computer--GORGEOUS photographs. XO

  8. beautiful photos! Your trip looks amazing, keep it going!

  9. What a fantastic adventure!!! I wish I had the motivation to do something like this, but will have to live vicariously through your travels. My bike rides are limited to Cambridge, UK and average about 5 miles a day. Nothing like what you two are doing. I wish you many great rides! Be safe!
    PS - looks hot out there - put on some sunblock!

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. Nico and Calen, For some reason this keeps coming up under Darren's name. I don't know why! Anyway, Elena told me to comment. I keep your blog on my toolbar and when I need a lift I click on it. Reading about your adventures and seeing the views and your smiling faces makes my day, seriously. This trip will be what people call a "death bed" story: one of those things you'll remember when you're ancient and waiting to go on to the great unknown adventure in the sky: "I remember when I was a young man and biked across the US. It was one of the best things I ever did!"

    I'll toast to you boys tonight. What should it be; a really cold beer or a glass of wine?