We packed up and headed out (not as early as we would like, which is typical for us now). Remembering how heavy our packs are we wondered if we sent enough home, there must be something we don’t need. We decided when Rebecca gets her bike (which was going to be ready in a couple of days!) we would mail away our sleeping bags with her backpack. It was getting warm enough to not need them at night and we could buy twin sheets that would be enough to keep us covered at night. They aren’t heavy, but any weight adds weight to our packs. We walked on a bike path out of Denver that was under construction.
And saw a man biking the way we should so we don’t have to carry anything!
Walking in cities is surprisingly more difficult than we’d expect. Traffic lights slow us down and we’re forced to wait in the hot sun for the green. Rebecca was getting tired quickly. Coming off of a long vacation is more difficult than we expected. Her foot was hurting and the heat was causing us to get mad at each other for random little things. As we got close to a mall near our ending point the rain clouds started coming in and the lightning was ahead of us. We decided to call Justin and see if he would pick us up, knowing Tim’s friend could give us a ride out the next morning. Having a bed, a shower, and another night to give us a fresh start would be good for us. Friends along the way (especially ones like Justin and Dan who readily accepted us into their lives for a couple of days) have saved us many times from mental and physical anguish.
We called him up and got into his car just in time. The rain started coming down hard and the lightning all around us made us both so happy to have an indoor bed for the night.
Geoff, Tim’s friend, dropped us off at the mall the next morning and brought us coffee. We mentally prepared ourselves for the hot day ahead of us and took off. We had scoped out a camping spot on Google earlier and we knew we were 25 miles from the trees we’d call home. We were told Rebecca’s bike would be ready this evening, so she’d be switching to biking tomorrow afternoon and we prepared to enjoy our last day walking together for a while. We even discussed both switching to riding horses, but decided against it.
We decided that people in eastern Colorado must just like painting signs on their buildings because there were lots of them.
The landscape was dramatically different than climbing the mountains, and the temperature was much higher too. We started to realize that summer is a bad (but the only one possible) season to walk across the country. But it was a gorgeous season as well because everything is growing and thriving.
The country seems to go on forever, and the small towns break up the day just enough to give us small breaks. We made it into Keenesburg after almost getting chased by a couple of very aggressive looking dogs, who luckily didn’t cross the street to attack us.
We stopped at the ice cream shop in town for burgers and ice cream, refilled our water, and walked to our campsite. The last 6 miles were hard. Rebecca was exhausted from the heat and complained the whole way. A train drove by us and stopped, blocking a truck trying to exit a train yard, and we walked onto the dirt frontage road along the interstate.
The sunset was gorgeous and we tried to appreciate it as we stumbled to the forested area along the roadway.
When we finally set up the tent we had to do it quickly to avoid the bugs. We hopped in, exhausted from the day, and hoped the trains passing only about 50 feet away from us wouldn’t see us hiding in the trees.
Today(s) we walked through:
Rebecca: 49,073 & 64,321 steps
Tim: 47,188 & 58,484 steps
1374 miles finished