The route

The route

Monday, October 24, 2011

Updated version

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

With hindsight...: Months later

I would have used the panniers. What was I thinking? As usual my arrogance got the better of me. The heavy rucksack messed up my back and it looks like it will be a long road to recovery. It took months for the numbness in my toes and fingers to completely subside. My tan has faded but, even after 10 months, a blurry line is still visible just above my knees. I could have gone slower as I finished my trip with 3 days to spare. I could have taken more pictures, I could have paused longer to take it all in. But probably long enough would never be enough. I could have been a better writer, I could have written a better journal, more descriptive, less boring.

One final word on America. I do not want to celebrate it with cheap words and used sentences. I was happy on the roads of America. It is as if they were made to be traveled on, as if they were built to provide relief for journeymen, drifters, travelers, lonesome, for the abandoned, for the runaways. I have witnessed a lot on the road. The diversity of the American wilderness is engaging to the point of complete fascination of the colors, the lights, the details. It sweeps it all: from the grand vistas of the Monument Valley or the Grand Canyon to the small details such as the insignificant worn out barn or the tender green of grass fields. And then I can talk about the diversity of the people. These are the ordinary folks, people that you don't normally see, you hardly hear. They do not have mad lives, there are the quiet ones, the happy ones, the fulfilled, the peace-seekers, the unassuming, the relaxed. But they are also the lonely, the wretched, the miserable, the broken ones. There are about 300 million different stories and they are probably not too differnt in their essence, the details may be different but they all strive for similar things. A solitary ride through the United States is worth a thousands relations.

I need to give credit to the hundreds of people I have met. Now they all seem part of a faceless crowd. The people I met are, without any equivocation, friendly, helpful, warm, curious, open to dialogue. It must come from the spirit upon which this country was built. It is a philosophy, it is a creed, it is a desire to help. The founders' vision is carried forward through small things, seemingly insignificant gestures. These are the people that make this country. And the country is yours for the taking. Taking not in the sense of stealing but in the sense of making it yours, making it personal, learning from it. It shows its beauties and its scars. It is wide open, it is there to be discovered. It is up to you.

I am back to my "normal" life now. I miss the open road, I miss the excitment and the challenge that riding 100 miles+ a day brings. I miss getting on the bicycle in the early morning hour when the sun is barely out, the fresh air pinches your skin and the road ahead is long and empty and the world is silent. I miss the sense of expectation.

I like missing all this.

An overwhelming sense of satisfation has filled me since my days on the road. It is not joy, it is not even happiness. It is rather a sense of stability, of peace that America has given me. I just hope it is going to linger a while longer. I am sure it will.

I have completed one of the best things I have ever done in my life.

To my dear grandfather.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


109 km (67 miles) - total: 4607 km (2862 miles)

Ash Fork, Az to Las Vegas, Nv

The alarm clock in my brain woke me up and I knew what I had to do.
I shot out of the motel this morning with the same urgency I had all month, determined to make it to Vegas. A descent of 2000 ft over 100 miles and a generous tailwind were gonna help me do it. I flew on the road for 3 hours, through Seligman and Kingman. It was a very good ride indeed given that the terrain was seriously hilly and that there were no services for over 45 miles. It was a solitary ride, I must have been passed by a handful of cars in the Arizona wilderness. I don't mean to brag but it takes a lot of confidence to tackle a 45-mile stretch of a hilly and lonely road in Arizona without services and with only two full water bottles. No chance I would have done it on day one. Now, after 32 days of America, I probably would have done it with one water bottle, maybe even less.

And so it was with this unshakable poise that I set out this morning to complete my final stage, all the way to the city of blinding lights. Even an understandable moment of questioning whether it was right or wrong to still be cycling after reaching my goal could not sway me. I felt determined and unfazed by the prospect of spending 12 hours (once again) riding under the unforgiving sun in the Arizona desert. As I left the hotel I was soon aided by the intense pleasure of riding on US 66 and a good tailwind which by late morning turned into a crosswind. The thing is even as confident and healthy as I felt, I knew that the bicycle had been ridden to its edges. It was going to let me down sooner or later. I hadn't had it serviced since Colorado and the shift felt very jumpy. I did not eat the whole morning; I did not take pictures, I rode like a competitive racer, determined to get to the end, oblivious to pain. However, after a cursory look at the map, by the time I reached Kingman I thought I was done for the day. I walked the downtown area for a while, I visited the US 66 route museum and then I thought it was probably a good idea to look for a motel. But as it happened before on this trip, my head says one thing and my guts tell me something else. On seeing the Vegas sign I couldn't help it. I thought "what the hell, let's do it!". I decided to press on. At this point I felt I had nothing left to lose so I might as well go for it, one last time, one last sprint, one last laughable dream. I ate 2 power bars and drank 2 Gatorades and I was off again. If I was gonna make it to Vegas in one day it would have to be done the hard way: I would have to ride over 170 miles today, which would have been my record, and on my very last day of the tour, what a twist!

From Kingman I still had 100 miles to go before reaching Vegas so naturally the wind was going to be the biggest factor. And, for once, the gods were benevolent and turned the winds in my favor. I pushed on along Highway 93 north bound. It was 4 miles north of Kingman where it happened. I was riding on a very rough-surfaced shoulder, full of gravel and debris which always pose serious threats to the tires. At one point, unable to ride inside the lane due to the passing traffic, I steered the bike once again into the shoulder where there was a considerable amount on loose gravel. I felt the back wheel rocking vigorously and after a split second the tire completely deflated. I was lucky not to fall. I dismounted and I looked at the tire and saw a big nail stuck in it. It opened a large gash and I immediately knew that my trip was over. No more cycling. There was no point in changing the tube as the tire was wrecked too. The next bike shop would have been in Vegas so I had two options: walk back to Kingman and get a bus or try to hitch a ride from where I was. I went for option two and after 5 minutes standing by the side of the highway a truck stopped and this incredibly kind man, Jim, gave me a ride all the way to Vegas. During the drive I told Jim about my trip and we had a pleasant conversation. He lives in Reno; he used to play American football and rides a mountain bike on weekends. We got to Vegas in no time and he was kind enough to help me find a bike store. I left the bicycle there where it will be packed for air travel.

I bought Jim lunch to repay the generosity he has shown me and then he left. For the very first time in 31 days I was on the road without the bicycle. An incredibly odd feeling. I felt naked and deprived. I kept looking around to see where I had left it. I walked the Strip, through the flashy, sun-baked Vegas sights still in my bicycle gear and understandably felt out of place. I should have walked into a store to buy a pair of pants and a t-shirt but I didn't feel like it. What I wore defined my identity. I am still a cyclist, I am not part of the crowd, not yet at least. I checked into a hotel and tried to block of all my thoughts from swirling inside my head. I managed to sleep after a hot bath. The bed felt reassuring. I took a long deserved rest. I will rest for a couple of days before my bicycle and I will fly back to DC.

My trip has painfully come to an end. I have to go back being myself again. I have a return ticket and I will use it. This is it.

Route 66 in Kingman

Route 66 celebration

Route 66 diner

Kingman, a great place to be if you are a route 66 fan

Last picture taken from the bicycle, 30 seconds later the nail will puncture my tire

Unmistakable evidence

The guilty nail!

The gash

Hoover Dam, 30 miles south of Vegas

Bellagio Hotel

Not really the city of blinding lights, but rather a blurry and senseless blend of confusion and fatuity. The lights, the blur, the sleaze, the third-rate gamblers, the cheap tourists and the vacuity of Vegas were an unfitting end to my trip but I had to fly back from somewhere!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

DAY 32: ROUTE 66!

111 km (69 miles) - total: 4498 km (2794 miles)

Grand Canyon South Rim, Az to Ash Fork, Az

I am so lucky. After the Appalachians, after crossing the Mississippi, after Kansas, after Colorado and the Monarch Pass, after Utah, after the Monument Valley, after the Grand Canyon, I get to ride my bicycle on historic route 66. What else can I ask for?

I will not put the blog to sleep just yet as with the remaining 3 days I cannot think of anything better to do than to continue cycling. I will try to make it to Las Vegas. The bicycle does not feel as smooth and the tires are seriously worn out, so the bicycle might die out before I do!

My attempt to get to Vegas took a serious blow today as unexpected rain and a big dip in temperature hit Grand Canyon this morning. I didn't feel like getting soaked so I waited for the rain to let up, which didn't happen until 11.30. That left me with only a few hours of daylight and with a very wet and slippery road. I still made good time to Williams, where I crossed paths with the historic route 66! As I left the town, I followed unpaved country road 124. I cycled and walked on that unpaved road for 11 miles. I did not ride the bike as conditions on this bit were horrible and I feared my tires would be seriously damaged. That totally killed my chances of getting as far as I would have liked. I cycled on until 8pm but then I had to stop in Ash Fork before total darkness would leave me stranded. I was lucky to find a motel with wifi and a little restaurant where I helped myself to 3 main courses. The waitress could not believe how much I ate. It's past 11 now and I still feel in great shape and in even better spirits. I think it is the adrenaline that's keeping me awake. My planned stop for today's stage was Seligman but it will have to wait until tomorrow. Is it irrelevant at this point that I entered the Pacific time zone?

Tusayan, it is never fun to watch the rain

It is raining in the Grand Canyon and it looks like I am sitting this one out

A beautiful bed of flowers along highway 64

Flintstones Bedrock City in Valle, along Highway 64

When I entered Williams and I saw a Los Angeles sign for the very first time I thought about it...500 miles in 3 that's a challenge...but for once I decide to use my head...

I am under the spell of route 66 and americana

Under the sign of US 66 route in Williams

The unpaved road from Williams, I cycled, I walked, I run. It took me 6 hours to cover 23 miles, by the time I left the Forest I was starving and frustrated

Almost 8pm when I reach a populated area, I felt like a savage coming down the mountains

Monday, September 6, 2010


131 km (82 miles) - total: 4397 km (2732 miles)

Tuba City, Az to Grand Canyon Village, Az

I made it! I reached my goal today. I crossed that imaginary finishing line tightly extended at the Grand Canyon National Park gates. No trophy awarded, no cameras to immortalize the moment, no pats on the shoulders from onlookers. Just swarms of people and busloads of loud tourists. I stopped in the middle of the parking lot and walked the bicycle through the parked vehicles as if nothing had happened, as if nothing had changed in my life. All I know for sure is that I did it and I did it 3 days ahead of schedule.
When I woke up this morning I had that 'last day of school' feeling. I packed my backpack and silently checked out of the motel. And I was on the road again. Not many thoughts...just one...get my ass to the Grand Canyon. I just flew today. Not even a steady head wind could deter me, I clocked the first 40kms in 1h 15min. The road unfolded like a straight sword shining in the sunlight and continued on a steady ascent all the way to the gates of the Park. I saw the Gran Canyon sign early in the morning but even then I knew I was gonna make it comfortably. Despite a very long climb, during which I gained 3000ft, from 4000ft at Tuba City to the 7000ft of the South Rim- I passed through the South Rim gates just after 1pm. And that was it. I could relax, I could enjoy the scenery and put away my worries of not making it.

I must thank all my friends and acquaintances and I thank them for their support over these past 31 days. I was not so sure about writing a 'live' journal during a bicycle trip. However, it proved to be a successful decision indeed. Initially, I had my reservations. Besides having to carry the weight of the laptop on my shoulders, I knew that I would have to keep a clear mind at the end of each day, after many hours of strenuous physical exercise, in order to be able to report faithfully and clearly on the day's action. I hope I have achieved that. I hope I have been expressive, desriptive and that style of writing made it all at least mildly entertaining. My hope was to communicate and to capture a small fraction of what I have lived through for 31 days on the road. I find it hard to translate my life on the road from my heart and mind to the 'screen' in a meaningful and coherent way. I simply tried to share the unbridled freedom that cycling on the roads of America has given me.

This is my Conrad's shadow-line, I have fullfilled my childish dream. I now I can put away childish things and get on with my life.

I am not gonna say much about the Grand Canyon, much has been written and much has been said about this massive scar on the surface of the earth sculpted by the muddy waters of the Colorado river. It is spectacular, imposing, humbling, inspiring. Everything people say about it it is true. I think you just have to see it for yourself. I cycled all afternoon along the South Rim enjoying the views and snapping away as much as I could. I certainly had a mixture of emotions after completing what has been an incredibly long journey. I am emotionally overloaded at the moment and I feel a pinch of fatigue sneaking in. A coat of mental fatigue is gradually taking hold of my brain. I find it hard to process the information. I have before me a deluge of emotions, images, sounds, colors, thoughts that it is all so overwhelming at the moment. Mentally, I can let it go, all the fear, all the anguish, all the attention, all the discipline, all the self-constriction, the mental confinement, the rigor...all of that I am gonna let it all go. It is exhausting.

Exactly one month on the road, 31 days, 2 rest days, 1 flat tire, zero injuries, lots of wind and lots of road. My legs feel heavy now and the sun is setting over the Canyon.

I am away, on my final stage

When I see this sign I am still 73 miles away from the Canyon but my heart begins to pound hard

Junction with H64, the last turn for me!

After many attempts, this is the picture I was looking for

Bikers on Highway 64

12.44pm, I see the sign I have been dreaming about for 31 days


She carried me across the US for 31 days

Sunday, September 5, 2010


149 km (93 miles) - total: 4266 km (2650 miles)

Monument Valley, Ut to Tuba City, Az

As I locked my shoes to the pedals of my bicycle this morning I threw a long glance at the stark beauty of the rocks of the MV rising from the desert bed with somber power under a cloudy sky. It appears as if the morning haze offers the big stones even more grandeur and nobility. It is a spectacular image, revisited, amplified and exploited by decades of clever work by the Hollywood movie industry.
After only 2 miles on the road I passed the Arizona sign and there I was entering on my two wheels the 8th and last State of my trip. I am sorry to leave Utah for it has given me an unforgettable setting to ride in, it has provided me with the silence and desolation I was longing for. But I welcome Arizona, now I am so close to the end of my cross-country adventure. It could be tomorrow.

I did a bit of research about this State. Arizona is a good name for a place but there is some disagreement over the origin of the name, some believe the name is an abbreviation of the Spanish phrase arida zona, or 'dry region', but others argue that it comes from the Basque phrase 'aritz onak', or 'good oaks'. The name Arizonac was initially applied to a silver mining camp, and later, when it had been shortened to Arizona to the entire territory.

Day 30 has been a long, long day with a constant headwind of 25-30 mph. After that 'journey to hell and back' in Kansas (day 22), this has been the toughest day of my trip and after the pathos, the gravitas, the passion yesterday at the MV, today's ride was about getting the job done, it was unremarkable and monotonous. I was more worried about fighting the wind and watching out for passing cars than anything else. I am glad it's over and I am only 82 miles from the Grand Canyon, I should be there tomorrow night, I should be able to wrap up my trip with 3 days to spare. Should I complain? When I left DC I had no idea if I was going to make it halfway, now that I am here, now that I have crossed 7 States, I feel the urgency to press on and maybe I should carry on and cycle all the way to LA. Is it my ambition biting the nails of success? Of course it is. But no, I will not complain.

But I will definitely complain about the wind today. Cycling into a headwind is like trying to run with a giant hand pulling you back. No matter how hard you paddle you just seem to be standing still. Now I understand why most riders go from West to East instead of going cross-country from the East coast to the West. I don't mind the rain, the heat, the cold, traffic, hunger, flat tires, heavy legs, give me anything but don't even mention the wind. As I left Kayenta and got closer to Tuba City the landscape began to change and I entered a very arid region where the sun beats down on you and the annual rain fall is very low. And today was no exception, it was by far the hottest day of the trip but while DC provides some incredibly humid heat, here it is extremely dry (only 12% humidity today) so it is bearable. Temperatures exceeded 100f but I did not sweat much and the winds did not give me a chance to realize how hot it was. The desert here is silent and severe, unsentimental, uninspiring, poised, daunting. There are no angels in this desert. There is no communication. No room for error, as if the land is telling you 'don't f**k up now 'cos if you do you are going to die'! The road is long and straight. All you've got to do is travel along. All you hear are the whispers of a dry wind that forces its way through the sand dunes and the defeated bushes, kicking tumbleweeds from every corner, sweeping the plains with unrelentless force to leave human beings no chance at happiness whatsoever. You may take solace in the limitless sky. It is after all a sheltering sky, where no truth lies covered and no cloud that will live forever. This kind of sky has a lot of character. It is bold and dreamy and deep. I cycled under it, under all it contains, through the wind and the sand. The color is not red anymore; it is more like beige, some kind of pale orange. The wind kicked up a lot of dust from the side of the road which flew up right into my face and mouth. Not only did I sweat America but I also ate it! I had a dry throat for most of the day and I did curse at the wind once in a while but when I saw the Tuba City sign at around 6pm after almost 10 hours on the bicycle I was so relieved that I said to the Gods of wind in defiance "you blew strong today but you didn't blow me off the road!". However, I have to admit that today I didn't like cycling. Today I wish I had been somewhere else. The wind does not allow you to enjoy the ride or the scenery. The wind makes for a slow grind, a painstakingly hard work on the road when every part of your body goes to work. And the mind controls everything. If I hadn't been so close to my final stage I might have stayed in bed today! I had to keep my wits about me for the whole ride as I remembered well what happened in Kansas. The wind kept hitting my bike, making it skid a little on the hot road surface. Not once did I lose sight of where my front wheel went so I didn't take many pictures and didn't flirt at all with the scenery. I just wanted to get myself home in one piece.

Forecast predicts heavy winds for tomorrow as well so I will have to stay focused, eat and drink plenty tonight and be ready for hard pedaling if I want to make it to Tusayan. There is only one service point on the 82-mile stretch. I will have to carry extra weight on my shoulders. And there are no motels until the Canyon so if I leave here I will have to make it. It is my last stage and it might be the toughest one. I will try to leave early as the wind is supposed to intensify after 10 am. No problem...bring it on!

Early morning and this is what I am leaving behind

It doesn't take long for the sun to come out on highway 163

Highway 163 looking East

A pit stop in the middle of nowhere


Arizona dry desert landscape

Arizona, highway 163, on the road...

While I am battling the wind this is the landscape from the side of the highway

Saturday, September 4, 2010


120 km (74 miles) - total: 4117 km (2558 miles)

Blanding, Ut to Monument Valley, Ut

I knew that today was going to be the day when I would stop in the middle of the red-rock desert and say "My God, I cycled all the way across the US for this!"
I hardly slept last night as I was so excited. Yesterday, for the very first time during my trip, the motel I tried to check-in in denied my request to have my bicycle in the room, so I tried my luck elsewhere and I lodged at a very comfortable Super8. After stretching and a quick breakfast, I was on the road at 7.45 and I immediately passed the 4000km mark. I flew through the miles from Blanding to Bluff, then Mexican Hat and finally the Monument Valley. I cycled south on highway 191 and then on 163. The ride was incredible and the MV is spectacular. It should be on anyone's the-5/10/50/100-things-to-do-before-you-die list. There is no end to aesthetic discovery in this land.

I am not capable to describe the complete pleasure and ectasy when riding this state. The silent Utah roads snake through incomprehensible geological formations and afford a unique and romantic scenery in which one cannot but thank God for being alive. My gaze was glued to the rocks all around me, the narrowing canyons and the mind-blowing colors. I think I rode with a smile on my face the whole morning. This is why I came. This rush of adrenaline, this being fully awake that makes me think that probably too much oxygen is flowing into my body, this is what I live for. The rest is mere preparation. It all comes down to a few moments. Happiness is condensed into an array of fleeting, untidy moments. And this is one of 'em.

At 10.45am, a few miles before I reached Mexican Hat, I climbed a steep hill and a whole valley stretched before my eyes and at the very end of it I could make out the flickering silouhette of the big solitary monoliths. I cycled faster, almost in a frantic state. I felt incredibly fresh, like I had just started my trip. Riding towards the MV erased those 4000km from my legs and breathed new life into me. I did not stop, I did not even drink. It took me almost 3 hours to get to them. The wide open landscape and lack of any form of visual reference makes judging distances a very deceptive process. At about 1.30 I was right by the stately buttes and mesas of Monument Valley. The towers rise hundreds of feet from the plateau and stand like majestic pyramids on the desert floor. Their shape and deep red color define the landscape of the classic American West. It is an awe inspiring view that seems to defy time and space. The towers stand sentinel in the middle of the desert standing strong against the wind, the sun and all the elements. This spectacular desert scenery of this remote location has become the definition of the Wild West. And yet, there is much more to it, there is something magnetic, a lure that I cannot comprehend, it is not just the buttes or the valley, it is the smell of the warm air, the reflections of the sunshine on the dry bushes and the red sand, the long road that twists and turns, the unbearable heat that melts the horizon, the desolation of the desert, the overwhelming vastness of the open spaces, the tantalizing intimation of all the mystical qualities of this strange land, it is the myth of a place that contains so much cultural and natural history that seem to belong to a different era.

What is it that has drawn me all the way here in the middle of a searing desert? Why did I come here? Why do people come here? To enjoy the view? To take pictures? To learn? To celebrate anniversaries? There is no breeze, there is no sound, and there is no right answer. There are just a lot of good questions I suppose. And I don't need answers. I look around and there is a big group of tourists grappling with a limitless number of angles from where to take the best pictures. I run into tourists for the very first time on this trip. I feel an outsider, I belong on my bicycle on the road and I can't fit in here. I am also a tourist but the road has done something to me. I carry only a pair of pants, socks, t-shirt and whatever essential I can carry on my back. For 30 days I have washed what I wear unrelentlessly, as if by getting rid of sweat and dust I could wash away the memory of the previous day. The road corrupts. I knew it. It is the sweat that has been dripping into my eyes for the past 29 days on the roads of America that has changed me. I lost my balance or maybe I have acquired a new one. It takes a lot to lose balance, it takes a lot of balls I be a new man. The only balance I know is the balance to ride my bicycle. Becasue I am cycling, I am running away. All the rest is constantly shifting. There are no boundaries anything. I think one of the reasons I am here it is because I respect this land, I come merely with respect and reverence for the land. The simple fact that I am here is a reward for my long journey. I am humbled by the beauty of this land. And maybe a little terrified. The desert lies open before me, its soul lies bare. The desert is raw, naked, exposed. The land lies uncovered. Is it a land of secrets? The silence of this land exudes secrecy. But no secrets can be hidden by an open land, right? I will remember cycling in the desert, alone, in total silence for the rest of my life. I will remember how the cool early morning air quickly turns into arid heat and how the color of the sand changes accordingly. I will remember all the times I stopped by the side of the road to sip water from my water bottle and all I could hear was my heavy breathing and the wind. And I will remember my long shadow reflected on the paved road and my sweaty arms holding my bicycle straight and my legs tight ready for another push.

Looking at the Monument Valley I am thinking I am almost done cycling. And what now? The sun reaches toward the horizon as dusk beckons. Shadows lengthen. Colors amplify. Liquid shadows flow together into concealing darkness. I take more pictures of the timeless sandstone monoliths that stand guard unafraid, proud, almost haughty in the valley. I cannot believe what nature has done. Centuries of weathering has given the sandstone monolith a distinctive profile. Tapering from the top, heavy erosion gives the monolith the appearance of a giant stone, isolated, lonely and yet so reassuring. The info given to me reveals that layers of sandstone, siltstone and shale were deposited here in ancient times and were buried for millennia until, like the rest of the Utah and Colorado Plateau, it was uplifted and folded. Eroded by wind and rain, soft red shale undermines the stronger, vertically-jointed sandstone, producing the many buttes and pinnacles. It is a fascinating story.

I am waiting for the stars to come out. They too will play with my imagination. The world slowly fades before my eyes. Up above, a blanket of stars intensifies and reveals the power and the beauty of a starry night in the desert. The sky is not quite black, it is steel blue, it is dark violet and other colors I don't even have names for. I find myself in southeastern Utah, near the border of Arizona, standing on top of a mesa looking at the distinctive silhouette of the red rocks against the dark sky. I am in Navajo land, an area that is of sacred significance to the Navajo, the Dine (People), they used to be an empire and now they are reduced to a colorful backdrop to a John Wayne picture and...and to all of our pictures. I sit in silence to contemplate the view and I look at the tires of my bicycle and they are worn out, smoothed down by the miles. Maybe I feel satisfied, maybe the extent of my achievement is dawning upon me, maybe I don't feel fresh anymore, maybe I am aware that I have 4000 km and 30 days of cycling in my legs, maybe I am 170 miles away from my finishing line and from a new beginning. I will make this one count. I will.

4000 km!!

Early morning on Highway 191, perfect conditions and I am flying at 37 kph!

Just me and the bicycle on the Utah highway

Highway 191 entering a canyon

The "twins"

10:48 am, I come off a steep hill, wipe the sweat off my eyes and this is what I see: the very first sighting of the MV

"Mexican Hat" , the sombrero-shaped rock formation

The Valley of the Gods

The classic view!

MV butte

I made it! 4100 km from DC to this on my bicycle!

No caption needed for these next pics