Day 65: Weds 9/17, Leaving Silver City, and Rain… 63 miles

I am an idiot. Lol! Last night at the laundromat I left my backpack (with all my super crucial and important stuff in there) on a chair inside the laundromat. I realized this when I was a mere 2 blocks away. In a panic, I turn around and race back to the laundromat. Door is locked! AAAAAAAHHHH!!!!! >.< On the bright side, I see my backpack sitting there, right where I left it. Whew!! Well, that's a relief. So, theoretically, when I return in the morning just as they open, it should still be there, right? The laundromat opens at 5:30am.

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Let’s hope so.

I didn’t sleep much that night. I didn’t go to bed til pretty late. And I woke up almost every hour, to check what time it was. After what seemed like an eternity it was finally time to go get my backpack. I got there at 5:31am, and the door was already unlocked. My backpack was there! JOY!!!! 😀

So now the question is, what the heck am I going to do til 9am (which is when the bike shop opens)?? At this point it was still dark.

I ended up riding to Walmart to do my resupply, since it was one of the few places that were open. I’m generally one of those anti-walmart people. But unfortunately there was no other efficient way to spend my time and I sure as heck was not going to go back to sleep. So I went grocery shopping at 5:30am. Lol. Of course I got rained on.

I hung out at a coffee shop down the street from where the bike shop is, waiting for the bike shop to open. Guess who walks in? One of the guys I met at the Gila Hot springs campground, who I also saw at cliff dwellings! And shortly after, Sisol and Dorothee arrive! They are the two ladies who fed me spaghetti at the Gila hot springs campground last night! Cool! So stoked to see them again. Apparently the campground was evacuated yesterday, in preparation for possible flooding… Crazy!

Here’s downtown historic Silver City. Cool artsy place with a health food store co-op and 2 bike shops, restaurants, quirky stores, and more! Western New Mexico University is just down the street.

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The bike shop replaced my brakes and they also found some spare parts for my rack yay!! It’s not hanging by a Ziptie anymore! 🙂

The ride out of Silver City was relatively chill. Huge rolling hills and no rain, for now. Yay! It was a short lived dry spell though. But, I’m glad this last stretch of dirt riding is high grade gravel, which is still passable when wet. Whew!

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My whole goal today was to get past the dirt portion of the road. Oh, by the way there has been flash flood warnings for all of Southern New Mexico. The very very last part of this ride is on pavement. I figured I’d rather be on pavement in torrential rains than dirt.

Today’s ride was pretty darn crappy. I was pretty wet, as I didn’t put on my rain gear until I was significantly rained on. It was just really hot under all that rain gear and I figured I’d be wet regardless. On a positive note, it’s not cold! 🙂

I passed by a ranch and there were horses on the road. They ran with me for a while, that was pretty cool. 🙂

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I passed under the I-10 freeway. Not the first time I’ve crossed under that freeway in the middle of nowhere on a cross country journey. I walked under the I-10 fwy when I hiked the PCT also.

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For the next 7 or 8 miles, I was in a gravel frontage road, paralleling the freeway. This was the last portion of off-road riding I had. Oh man, this section seemed to go on FOREVER. Plus it was starting to get dark so it was a race against time for me. I NEEDED to get off the dirt.

After what seemed like an eternity I finally got on pavement. Yay!! This will improve my speed and I won’t be slogging as much. Now it was a matter of finding a place to pitch my tent that wasn’t underwater, and that didn’t look like it would be flooded.

I found somewhere I thought would stay relatively dry. At this point the rain hasn’t stopped so I was seeking a higher spot off the side of the road. Somewhere water wouldn’t pool.

I must be on the Border Patrol radar because my goodness there were a lot of patrol cars going past me. But then again I’m less than 65 miles from the Mexico border, so I’m not surprised. Although it is somewhat intimidating to have them drive by so frequently, it ultimately made me feel a lot safer.

The rain an wind is just crankin. Ugh. Time to think positive thoughts! Perhaps it will stop raining in the morning? That has seemed to be the trend throughout the trip. If it rained last night, usually the next morning would be bright and sunny. Hard to imagine this is my last night on the trail…

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