Tour Divide – Day 11

Adventure by Bike, Bikepacking, GDMBR, Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, Mountain Biking, ride the divide, Salsa Cycles, Tour Divide, Tour Divide 2013, Wyoming
Day 11: From before Pinedale to Atlantic City
We woke up to some pretty chilly temperatures so getting packed up and moving my was number one priority.  I tried to eat as much food as I could before getting out of my sleeping bag but knowing we weren’t too far from Pinedale and hopefully a huge breakfast didn’t make me that psyched to eat candy bars or swedish fish.  
I hit the outhouse, saddled up and hit the gravel road.  

Soon after hitting the pavement we passed some beautiful scenery and mountains.  The mountain range I was looking at to the east was the Wind River Range.  Five years ago I spent 2 weeks in the Winds hiking and climbing.  It felt nice knowing I had been “near” here before but everything looks so different when on a bike.  It was nice to see the mountains again though.

We also got to see some pretty typical Wyoming scenery – some cowboys driving cattle….yeehawww!

Eventually we made it into Pinedale and the first sign of a good diner happened to be the Wrangler Cafe, appropriately named.  

The food was great and the service was speedy as the server kept refilling coffee’s, oranges juices and waters. Two plates of food was in order and of course I ordered a third plate of two eggs and a side of bacon after devouring the first two plates like it was nothing.

Before leaving Pinedale I stopped at the hardware store to get some new sticky velcro.  My plastic ziploc I was using as a map case was so beat up I couldn’t really see the map anymore and the the way I had it setup was with velcro.  I kept a few extra pieces just in case and left the rest at the counter for someone else.  Just a short ride down the highway and we hit Boulder and restocked on food before heading to Atlantic City.

I had heard a rumor that Atlantic City restaurant and store were not open on Monday’s so was unsure about how I was going to resupply before heading out into the Great Basin.  The Great Basin was daunting enough knowing I had to ride over 130 miles between re-supply points but know it was looking like another 80+ miles from Boulder all the way to Rawlins.  I tried calling the store but there was no answer.  So I stocked up a ton of food without going completely overboard.  I figured I could suffer through if I needed to and was really hoping there would be something open in Atlantic City.  The other option was to wait until later on Tuesday if the restaurant opened but my plan had been to leave super early Tuesday morning so I wouldn’t get caught out in the Basin during the hottest part of the day.

The ride out of Boulder was a little windy and it got me thinking about how the Great Basin was going to be.  I just hoped there would not be a head wind!  I stopped and met up with Chris B., Peter M. and Nick H. who were stopped near the Big Sandy River doing a little bike maintenance and eating some much needed lunch.  I was ready for a break.

Sean Putnam and Kevin Campagna stopped too and we had a nice break and chatted about the resupply situation in Atlantic City.  We all figured worse case we just wait till the restaurant opens in the morning at 8.

Multi-tasking is a good skill to know while racing the Tour Divide!
Back in the saddle….
Sean showing me how to be “Super Aero” but shortly after this I pedaled past him.
The gravel road seemed to go on and on and on and on.  The terrain that looked flat on the elevation profile was definitely not flat.  In fact I found that this type of endless rollers had the worst affect on my.  It was like doing intervals and now was not the time for intervals.  I just kept pedaling as fast as I could to make it as far up the next hill as possible before shifting to my easiest gear and spinning up the rest of the climb.  Then back to hammering down the next hill and so on….I was getting beat.
Endless Rollers…….

After doing about 200 interval “rollers” Sean and I succumbed to walking.

We hit Highway 28 at “South Pass (7,550′)” and took a break at the rest stop.  There was some interesting history around here. According the ACA Maps, back in the 1840’s thousands of pioneers traveling the Oregon Trail drove their wagons up and over South Pass.  I was interesting to think we were now pedaling the same path.

We talked to the cleaning lady at the Rest Stop and asked her if there was anything open in Atlantic City.  She was a local to town and said there is a community room that she would leave unlocked for us.  She said there was some food but it was pretty limited and if we wanted anything to just leave some cash under the register.  She said we could sleep in the building if we wanted and also there were computers and internet!  What???  Internet???  In this part of Wyoming you’re lucky if you can just find water and maybe some food, but Internet???

We continued down the Highway with some new found energy and back onto a gravel road heading to South Pass City, a tiny little dot on the map about 10 miles before Atlantic City (slightly larger than a dot on the map but apparently with Internet).

Heading out of South Pass City which was basically a Ghost Town as nothing was open.  I wasn’t really sure if anything was ever open there but it did say there was a grocery according to the map.  The paved road out of town was super steep and after our interval training earlier in the day none of us had the legs to pedal it.

Once we reached Atlantic City we found the Community Center and also a sign for Ice Cream!!  Going inside was like venturing into a candy store for the first time.  In fact there was even a bunch of hand made, old fashioned candy in jars.  It looked nice and all but I went straight for the freezer with the ice cream bars!  There were several other food items in the front of the store with a mix of books and other items.  It was like a little gift shop.  In the back was tons of room for sleeping and the computers with Internet.

I ate my ice cream, found some pizza bagels and some other items to resupply with, added up my tab and left my money under the register.  I propped my bike against the book shelf, laid out my sleeping pad and fell asleep.

Main Street – Atlantic City 2013