Trip Summary

Day 52: 2929 miles completed, 8 states, 7 flat tires, 4 flat mattresses, 40 new friends and Bruce #1, 8 rest days

Monday, March 11, 2013

Day 3: It’s All Downhill

Holy Moly! It was a test in courage today for those of us who would much rather do a slow uphill ride to a fast downhill any day! We started at elevation of 4000 feet and ended at -39! We traveled downhill for 10 full miles along the I-8 freeway in about 20 minutes. As a passenger with absolutely no control, the speed coupled with a nasty crosswind made for a thrilling, breathtaking ride. Jeff did a great job keeping the speed reasonable, averaging about 26 MPH. With the momentum of a tandem carrying 2 adults, we could have easily probably surpassed 60 MPH or more, but the margin for error at that point was not worth the risk.

We had a 62.1 mile day of riding, so the 10 mile downhill was just a small portion. WE also got as close to the US/Mexico border fence as we have been yet. WE saw many, many Border Patrol, especially as we rode across the Yuha Desert. Remember how we complained about the frigid cold the first 2 nights? NO longer a problem once we decreased the elevation. It was hot today and dry in the desert.

Tonight we are camping indoors at Calexico Mission School, a private school where about 1/3 of the students cross the border daily to attend (legally). It costs their parents (most of whom are affluent doctors, etc) $9000 to send them here, and some can take nearly 3 hours to get to school. In fact, they give the students a flexible star time so they are not continually tardy. The students treated us tonight to a great dinner, prepared by the students. Being a Seventh Day Adventist School, it was a vegetarian meal of cheese enchiladas, rice, beans and chocolate chip cookies. The tour guide will make a donation to the school on behalf of all of us to thank them.

We phoned the Hagens from the road, and while we were sweltering in the desert, they told us they had school canceled because of snow and were out building a snowman.

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