• 64°

In the ‘prairie chicken capital of the world’

Editor’s note: David Freeze is biking coast to coast. His trek started June 10 in Oregon. He’s sending dispatches from the road to be published in the newspaper, at www.salisburypost.com, and on his blog, “Gotta Run” at blog.salisburypost.com/gottarun

After spending the night in the wonderful hostel at Zion Lutheran Church in Hutchinson, I was up at 4:15 AM and ready to get some miles done early. While I was getting ready, I thought I noticed a flash of light in a basement window. I walked to the door and looked out, and realized that it was pouring, wind blowing and a lot of lightning. Everything was ready, so I just laid back down on the bed and dozed through the next hour’s weather reports.

The weather lessened by 6, so out the door I went. Some of the streets were flooded, but there was almost no traffic. I put my little rear flasher on, and headed on down the street. I came the closest yet to getting hit by a tractor-trailer as we were going through a massive road work area. It was still raining, though not heavily.

I had a 30 mile ride to Newton on good roads and good shoulders. I was not doing as well as I had hoped, until two things happened. I got a big brownie, and for some reason the wind stopped blowing while it was raining. Through 40 miles, I was now making good time and rolling along well. About 10 miles later, the rain stopped, the sun came out, and the headwind returned. Most of the last 20 miles were into that wind, and I realized, too, that Kansas is no longer flat. In all, I rode 77 miles today.

I am spending the night in a very small motel in Cassoday, Kan., right next to the railroad track, and it seems like a train comes by very 15 minutes. That is OK, they won’t bother me much. Who knew that Cassoday is the prairie chicken capital of the world?

I promised some numbers on the ride so far. Through today, I have 2,542 miles complete. That leaves about 1,600 to go, or roughly 38 percent of the ride.

It looks like three more days in Kansas, then I head into Missouri. My plan all along was to follow the Trans America Bicycle Trail till I get to Damascus, Va., then figure a reasonable and safe way to come back to Rowan County. To complete the coast to coast trip, I will then go to the beach and dip the front tire in the Atlantic Ocean. I imagine that ceremony could be fairly emotional.

A few thoughts on today’s ride include the sameness of the scenery. I stopped at Subway for a quick breakfast this morning. Two locals helped me with directions, then one of them said, “There is not much to see out there but a bunch of fields.” They were absolutely right.

A small leftover from yesterday is that I took some time and rode around Hutchinson for a while. They have the second largest museum of space artifacts in the world and lots of nice people. The streets are beautiful and well-kept. Lots of people were out in their yards, even with temperatures still near 100 degrees.

Out early again tomorrow, hoping to beat the wind. The temperature was only in the 80s today, first time since I entered Kansas.

Here comes another train. I’m going to check it out.

David Freeze lives in Rowan County.


View David Freeze’s ride in a larger map

Comments

Comments closed.

High School

High school football: Playoff time means get ready for ‘big-boy football’

High School

High school football: Hornets overpower South to secure playoff spot

Crime

Jeffrey MacDonald won’t be released despite deteriorating health

Business

Amazon warehouse workers reject union in Alabama

Nation/World

Ex-NFL player’s brain to be probed for trauma-related harm after Rock Hill shootings

Education

Duke University to require COVID vaccinations for fall term

Education

Cooper OKs bill offering K-12 students summer school option

High School

High school football: Record night for Pinckney as East cruises; Carson wins thriller in OT

Nation/World

D-Day survivor, WWII torch bearer Ray Lambert dies at 100

Nation/World

Prince Philip was always defined by role as husband of British queen

China Grove

One dead, several injured after head-on collision in China Grove

Crime

Man, woman charged for selling drugs to undercover deputies

Crime

Blotter: Rowan County man charged with indecent liberties with children

Local

Spencer town board gets look at Park Plaza progress

Business

‘Applicant market’: Unemployment rate improving as businesses hire more workers

Local

National, local business leaders praise Salisbury’s initiative to support Black-owned operations

Nation/World

Tillis has prostate cancer surgery

Coronavirus

Adverse reactions surface from Johnson & Johnson vaccine

Nation/World

Expert: Lack of oxygen killed George Floyd, not drugs

Local

Quotes of the week

Nation/World

Biden seeks crackdown on homemade firearms

Nation/World

Victim of former NFL player’s rampage wrote of faith, life’s fragility

News

Wrongly imprisoned man gets $750,000

High School

West falls to Statesville, finishes second in NPC