Sleep has been elusive for days, so much so that I've had to indulge in some Advil PM to force myself to sleep. One pill and I'm off in dreamland. Last night's dreams centered on finding an alternate route from Pueblo, CO, up to the northside of Colorado Springs, a route I will be taking. Having lived in Colorado Springs and the area until 1989, I know that area, and originally routed myself through some heavily congested parts of traffic. My dreams kept telling me there is another way to the east, but even when I woke up at 6:30 and looked at Google Maps on my Iphone, I could not find that way. It was only when I got onto a much larger computer screen that I found the path. But it adds 14 extra miles on my route, and from Pueblo to Colorado Springs, at least the part I am going to, is an elevation increase of about 3800 ft. Yes, it's all uphill from Pueblo... Still, traffic slows you down, so putting in extra miles on quiet country roads may get me there faster because I'll be able to maintain a good, constant speed. On the flipside, when I leave this area on my cross country trek next year, it is all downhill to the TransAm. About 100 miles of pure downhill. That will be one heck of a ride. If I were going to be in Colorado longer than 4 days in June (and two of those are flying days), I would be seriously tempted to ride that route, but if I were going to be there longer, I'd also take my own bike on the plane.
The interesting thing is that in two months I'll be visiting that northern part of Colorado Springs, and I am going to do a bit of exploring via a borrowed bike. How wonderful it will be to be on long, empty roads. I hope to even ride for a bit on Hwy 24 going east towards Limon, but I won't go further than Calhan, because it's 33 miles just to get there, and Limon is 71 miles from my start place. I'd gladly ride to Limon (it's all downhill!!!) if someone would pick me up but I don't want to put anyone out, so that's not going to happen. At least, however, I will get just a taste of what I long for - to be on the open road.
In the meantime, my fenders have come in to at I. Martin Bicycles, and I need to pick them up, even though I won't have them installed until I also get the Surly front rack.
And in other big news... I have had overtures of a potential job in Scotland. It would be a private job, so I would only be able to work the max time my passport would allow me to be in the country - which is 180 days per calendar year. So the possibility is to work the winter months there, like Oct-March, then use Britain as a springboard for touring in Europe or returning to the USA for some cross-country touring for the other months. Might even be great to do the TransAm, then the Pacific coast, and by that time I might be looking at heading back to Britain. I'd still like to do Nova Scotia to the Florida Keys, and I'd love to do the Mississippi River Trail. Anyhow, the Scotland thing is a ways off. We'll see.