We’ve Reached Colorado!

Whew! Kansas sure is a long and flat state!  Although the trek going west is a constant uphill grade-usually subtle, we found it challenging in its own way. By the time we had gotten to Colorado, we had gained a good 4000+ feet of elevation. Our days were usually in the 40-50 mile range, with a 70-mile and a couple of 60-mile ones in there too. We felt a great sense of accomplishment once we reached the Colorado border! 

 Here we are at the Colorado border. So happy to have reached this point!!

Here we are at the Colorado border. So happy to have reached this point!!

 Here is one of the views we enjoyed while still in Kansas- lots of wind mills. So glad they can put that crazy wind to use!

Here is one of the views we enjoyed while still in Kansas- lots of wind mills. So glad they can put that crazy wind to use!

 Here is Ana, a godsend when we were sweaty and tired. In the course of her delivery job she passed us in her delivery truck. On her return trip she picked up some ice cold water and then flagged us down and rushed over to hand them to us. It was the highlight of our bike riding day!!

Here is Ana, a godsend when we were sweaty and tired. In the course of her delivery job she passed us in her delivery truck. On her return trip she picked up some ice cold water and then flagged us down and rushed over to hand them to us. It was the highlight of our bike riding day!!

 We had the pleasure of camping two different nights with this lovely couple from the Netherlands, Mike and Ineke. They, too, are going west across the TransAmerica Trail. 

We had the pleasure of camping two different nights with this lovely couple from the Netherlands, Mike and Ineke. They, too, are going west across the TransAmerica Trail. 

 After our toughest windy day, we decided we needed to stop short of that day’s goal and stay in Dighton, KS (rather than continuing that day to Scott City). As we were surveying the city park and where we would set up our tents, this sweet woman, Destinee, and her 3 boys, drove up to us (after having seen us riding through town) and invited us to stay at their house. They just recently became WarmShowers hosts. We really enjoyed getting to know them (Mike, Destinee, Tatum, Brayden, and Camden), enjoyed the great food they so generously cooked for us, our boys playing with their boys, and the wonderful showers and beds.

After our toughest windy day, we decided we needed to stop short of that day’s goal and stay in Dighton, KS (rather than continuing that day to Scott City). As we were surveying the city park and where we would set up our tents, this sweet woman, Destinee, and her 3 boys, drove up to us (after having seen us riding through town) and invited us to stay at their house. They just recently became WarmShowers hosts. We really enjoyed getting to know them (Mike, Destinee, Tatum, Brayden, and Camden), enjoyed the great food they so generously cooked for us, our boys playing with their boys, and the wonderful showers and beds.

 The boys really enjoyed playing with Tatem and Brayden in their pool!

The boys really enjoyed playing with Tatem and Brayden in their pool!

 Imagine the joy we experienced when this mill and bakery showed up on our route in the middle of the corn and grain fields in Kansas! 

Imagine the joy we experienced when this mill and bakery showed up on our route in the middle of the corn and grain fields in Kansas! 

 And here we are inside the bakery enjoying some fresh-out-of-the-oven doughnuts. Great pedal power food and a very fun and unexpected treat!

And here we are inside the bakery enjoying some fresh-out-of-the-oven doughnuts. Great pedal power food and a very fun and unexpected treat!

 We met Mike and his kids, Madeline and Quentin, at the bakery just outside of Leoti, KS, where we had stopped to enjoy those scrumptious doughnuts. Mike was there to offer his wheat to the mill as a possible grain they might use in the future. After talking with us for a bit, he invited us to the cookout and pool party (that the hospital employees were having) at the city park where we had already planned to camp that night. We accepted the invitation and later he and his wife invited us to stay at their house instead. We wish we had been able to have more time getting to know this delightful family, but we needed to get an early start the following morning. 

We met Mike and his kids, Madeline and Quentin, at the bakery just outside of Leoti, KS, where we had stopped to enjoy those scrumptious doughnuts. Mike was there to offer his wheat to the mill as a possible grain they might use in the future. After talking with us for a bit, he invited us to the cookout and pool party (that the hospital employees were having) at the city park where we had already planned to camp that night. We accepted the invitation and later he and his wife invited us to stay at their house instead. We wish we had been able to have more time getting to know this delightful family, but we needed to get an early start the following morning. 

 Mike and Julia, who generously (and spontaneously) hosted us in Leoti, KS- even while Julia had to be the on-call ER physician at the local hospital that weekend!

Mike and Julia, who generously (and spontaneously) hosted us in Leoti, KS- even while Julia had to be the on-call ER physician at the local hospital that weekend!

 This is where we crossed from the central time zone into the mountain time zone in western Kansas (almost in Colorado, but not quite). We’re lined up standing in both time zones. Hmm... what time is it then??

This is where we crossed from the central time zone into the mountain time zone in western Kansas (almost in Colorado, but not quite). We’re lined up standing in both time zones. Hmm... what time is it then??

 Here is the church where we stayed in Sheridan Lake (Sheridan Lake Bible Church). We thoroughly enjoyed the people we met there, in addition to the air conditioning and use of the kitchen! Since it was a Saturday night, we were able to go to their church service the next morning. See below for more coolness at this church...

Here is the church where we stayed in Sheridan Lake (Sheridan Lake Bible Church). We thoroughly enjoyed the people we met there, in addition to the air conditioning and use of the kitchen! Since it was a Saturday night, we were able to go to their church service the next morning. See below for more coolness at this church...

 The boys got into a rubber band war in the church’s common space (using a rubber band gun Russell had recently bought). 

The boys got into a rubber band war in the church’s common space (using a rubber band gun Russell had recently bought). 

 These missionaries, Larry and Di (working in Indonesia, but currently just beginning furlough), were visiting the church and shared some amazing testimony. One super cool connection is that they have used ECHO for agricultural support as they farm (and teach locals some best practices in farming) where they live in Papua. In addition, they work with Wycliffe in Bible translation. Larry uses his skills in media to teach people about Jesus, and Di works as a physician giving medical attention to families, treating folks with HIV, and much more, in addition to nutrition education. It was a real encouragement to talk with them and hear what they are doing!

These missionaries, Larry and Di (working in Indonesia, but currently just beginning furlough), were visiting the church and shared some amazing testimony. One super cool connection is that they have used ECHO for agricultural support as they farm (and teach locals some best practices in farming) where they live in Papua. In addition, they work with Wycliffe in Bible translation. Larry uses his skills in media to teach people about Jesus, and Di works as a physician giving medical attention to families, treating folks with HIV, and much more, in addition to nutrition education. It was a real encouragement to talk with them and hear what they are doing!

 After the church service, we were invited to a potluck lunch. What a blessing to get to know these dear people and fill our bellies before our afternoon ride. (We even had some food to contribute to the potluck!) 😊

After the church service, we were invited to a potluck lunch. What a blessing to get to know these dear people and fill our bellies before our afternoon ride. (We even had some food to contribute to the potluck!) 😊

   When we arrived in Eads, CO, we camped in a small city park. Upon arriving, we noticed a sign alerting us to the automatic sprinkler system that turns on at 7:30 AM. This gave us the motivation to get our camping gear packed up by then. (We’ve been trying to get an earlier start each morning, and this served as a great way to hone those packing skills!)

  When we arrived in Eads, CO, we camped in a small city park. Upon arriving, we noticed a sign alerting us to the automatic sprinkler system that turns on at 7:30 AM. This gave us the motivation to get our camping gear packed up by then. (We’ve been trying to get an earlier start each morning, and this served as a great way to hone those packing skills!)

 in Eads, CO, we realized that we were at the half-way point on the TransAmerica Trail!

in Eads, CO, we realized that we were at the half-way point on the TransAmerica Trail!

 We had been warned not to drink the water in certain places in CO. So we spotted this purified water dispenser in Eads, and thought it would be a great place to fill our water bottles. This man, Larry, was filling his jugs there and graciously let us fill our water bottles from his jugs (no charge!). In addition, he prayed with our family for our trip! So, I suppose he helped give us both physical and “living” water!

We had been warned not to drink the water in certain places in CO. So we spotted this purified water dispenser in Eads, and thought it would be a great place to fill our water bottles. This man, Larry, was filling his jugs there and graciously let us fill our water bottles from his jugs (no charge!). In addition, he prayed with our family for our trip! So, I suppose he helped give us both physical and “living” water!

 Saw this sign and had to take a picture of it. “Hanger” is something we battle on the road. We try to stop often for snack/water breaks, but sometimes, hanger gets the best of us and it isn’t pretty!

Saw this sign and had to take a picture of it. “Hanger” is something we battle on the road. We try to stop often for snack/water breaks, but sometimes, hanger gets the best of us and it isn’t pretty!

 Not only was entering Colorado a big milestone for us, but so was reaching Pueblo, CO. Perhaps this was because Pueblo is the place where we would take off about a week to visit with family and friends in Boulder, CO. Check out the elevation! Woohoo! 

Not only was entering Colorado a big milestone for us, but so was reaching Pueblo, CO. Perhaps this was because Pueblo is the place where we would take off about a week to visit with family and friends in Boulder, CO. Check out the elevation! Woohoo! 

 Our Pueblo celebration dinner at a terrific sushi restaurant. 

Our Pueblo celebration dinner at a terrific sushi restaurant.