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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Day 8 of riding, first day of Summer!

We were up at 6:00, breakfast was served at 6:30 and we left the Hualapai (Walla-pie) Lodge at 6:50 am driving back to where we left off yesterday on I-40 at Saligman, AZ.  Once again we had clear skies and it was a cool 60 degrees.
Russ began riding at 7:40.  He told us later that he was sweating from his exertion, but his head was cold because of the low temperature.  Before long it was 70 degrees. The first 9 miles was a major climb, but with many climbs there is a rewarding downhill, which was about 7 miles.  There was a great shoulder so smoother riding.  We began to see more and more cedar-type trees.
 Last year we noticed that when we came upon cattle they stared at the bicycle as we passed almost like they were shocked.  Today they did just that and then started running!  It was the funniest thing!  The picture doesn't clearly show the cattle, but the little clouds of dust are being made by cows and calves running at full speed.  Bikes must be pretty strange looking compared to all the cars & trucks going by every day. We also saw LOTS of prairie dogs, they were too fast for me to catch them with the camera.  They would give Russ a curious look, then take off in a puff of dust, too!
 Our only break was in Ashfork just after 9 am. after riding 20 miles.  By this time it was 85 degrees and very pleasant.
There were a few types of flowers today, these orange ones are difficult to see, on long, tall stems.  We also saw bushes covered with white cotton-like fluff, sunflowers and some daisy-like flowers.
After the break and a few miles, the major 18 mile climb began.  As you can see in this picture there is an added lane.  You know it's going to be steep when they add the truck lane and trucks start crawling along using their flashers. 
Russ climbed up through the beginning of the Kaibab National Forest.  Russ said he was mostly looking down watching the road and he began to smell pine.  He looked up, and there we were, in the forest! 
The camera had lost it's charge by this time, so I didn't get a good picture of the beginning of the forest. But I took some pictures with my phone. It's hard to see, but this is Devil Dog Road.
 After riding 44+ miles, we arrived in Williams, Arizona around 11:30 am.  We found our Quality Inn where they graciously allowed us to check in to our room early.  We ate leftovers from yesterday for lunch, drove downtown to the visitor's center, looked around at some shops along the historic Route 66, visited the grocery store and then we stopped at Pine Country Restaurant and enjoyed some DELICIOUS pie!  I had the cherry chocolate cream pie, Gene had coconut cream and Russ had sugar free banana.  Mine looked as fabulous as it tasted!
 We had a Kodak moment at the Grand Canyon train station with the old locomotive. 
 Russ pedaled on to the highway we will ride on to the Grand Canyon tomorrow.  Here you can see the pretty ponderosa pines.  It really is beautiful here, the temperature wasn't too hot-around 95 was the car thermometer reading, Russ said it got to 106 degrees as the highest on his bike thermometer.
It was another blessed day.  I realized today that we haven't had as many encounters with people to share with you in the past couple of days but it occurred to me that we've been on the interstate.  When you think about interstate travel, people are usually in a hurry both on the road and the stops they make.  Faceless people hurrying through life.  We do that sometimes, don't we? Hurry our way through life not looking, paying attention, enjoying or stopping to "smell the roses"...or "smell the pines", in our case.  I pray that none of us miss opportunities to enjoy the journey that God has sent us on in our lives; being the people that the Lord has called us to be.  Thank you again for keeping us in your prayers.  Blessings to you until tomorrow,
Russ & Carol

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The CrossNAmerica trip is First to be a witness of the significance of the Cross of Jesus Christ and Its Foundational Influence Upon This Nation. Its Even the Glue That Holds Us Together. "LAMININ"

Secondly we are raising pledges per mile or single pledges to support any of the five mission organizations listed on this blog or any other worthy Christian mission effort around the world, locally or globally.

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:18