Day 54: Final Exam #1 – Heat and Sparse Population

The night at the campground was pretty uneventful except for waking up to a dog sniffing my face. The dog was on a leash and the owner just stood there staring at me. I looked at him, then the dog, then him… He looked at me, then the dog, then me… It was odd.

We got on the road around 6ish and knew there was a hot day ahead. The temp forecast for our destination city of Brawley was 110 degrees. We went through a lot of wasteland with moderate hills and even passed a military bombing facility that warned against trespassing. After about 30 miles we came to the sand dunes and a last chance for rest. We grabbed some water, rechecked supplies, and prepped for the next 25 miles of rough heat. We got some strange looks from the few people that passed by but I guess two men in spandex stretching while listening to techno music is an oddity out in the desert of southeast California.

The dunes and remaining wasteland went fairly easily but the heat took its toll. We had to stop at a small ranch on the side of the road to get some shade and rest. The owner came home while we were resting and brought us some ice water. It was a lovely and carried us into Brawley where we got out of the sun for a bit. We decided to try to get a few more miles in, there was a lot of wind but we managed to get 20 miles down.

We camped out on the side of the highway just past a Border Control Gestapo-esque “show me your papers” check point. Tomorrow we face the mountains but get to meet up with Peter, Emily, and Josh in the evening. josh will be riding with us for the rest of the trip, an addition I am truly thrilled about.

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