The next morning it was south through Ouray and Silverton to Durango on some of the scariest mountain roads in this country. As many times as I have ridden the road out of Ouray, I still find it a little unsettling to say the least. We got caught in the only shower of the whole trip in a road construction area, but by the time we climbed Wolf Creek pass and arrived in Alamosa for the night I was dry. The next day was one of the most scenic runs ever, between Alamosa and Leadville you pass by a series of 14,000 foot mountains that this year were unusually snow covered, with a deep blue sky to boot. At the stop in Leadville we spent some time talking with a local, another Marine vet, about the local celebration in progress there etc.. While studying a poster on the wall in the convenience store I realized it was a price list for various amounts of marihuana, you can buy it here, just don't bring it home. From there up to I-70 to Dillon, another traffic jam, to Kremling for lunch. Just short of Walden, a bad accident kept us on the side of the road for about an hour, chit chatting with local ranchers and a truck driver hauling crude. I never have been able to find out what happened, but it looked as if the car hit a trailer going the other way, on this nearly deserted highway, and ripped the whole side out of the trailer. The car was in the deep ditch with the top pealed back, and the trailer and it's contents were scattered for 100 yards down the road. It did not look too good for the car driver, but the ambulance passed us later headed for Laramie I suppose. It was Wheatland, Wyoming that night. The next day is the sort of day that you must put in just to get back home, I guess. I thought just this once, for varieties' sake I would try a route across northern Nebraska, all the way to Sioux City. From Wheatland to Chadron, Nebraska was not too bad. We passed through Ft. Robinson, which Jan and I visited last year. An interesting side trip while we were staying at Hot Springs KOA. Lunch was at Chadron and the grind eastward began on a two lane road that went north, south, and then east some more. By 6 pm we were barely to Yankton, South Dakota. Finding a place to stay in Yankton did not go well either, with weddings, and class reunions going on. Luckily we did nail down a room at a former Super 8 where neither the snack machine nor ice machine were working. The next day it was up through Sioux Falls and east. Phil and I split just over the border in Minnesota so he could head home to Delano and I went east to St. James and home by about noon, after a stop at Eli and Lindsey's farm.
All in all a good trip with no major trouble beyond Phils' charging problem that got repaired. I admit that I chickened out on my grandiose plans for Nevada and Arizona, due to the heat in those areas. Maybe some other year or Heaven forbid not on a bike.