Day 7: Friday
Distance: 111.69 mi
Average Speed: 15.4 mph
Maximum Speed: 37.8 mph
Time in Motion: 7:14:29
Climbed: 3,385 ft(wow! I didn't expect that much)
We left early to find breakfast, but almost everything was closed. We ended up eating breakfast burritos again. As my food was placed before me I almost felt sick. My stomach really wanted a bowl of cereal, some fruit, or something. And it rebelled at the thought of more eggs and cheese. It's not often I feel that repulsed by the sight of food. Being our only obvious option, aside from a doughnut from a bakery or c-store snacks, I forced myself to eat. Once I started eating I felt better. Yuck.
As the sun was rising, we got onto the road. It was warm, but extremely foggy. The fog and sun was beautiful. Thankfully, the fog lifted quickly so the traffic could see me pedaling along the road. It turned out to be a beautiful day for our long ride ... thanks be to God!
I cruised at almost 20 miles an hour to Dryden, the first town along the route, about 20 miles out. The store opened just as I pulled up, so Jesse and I ate a second breakfast. The store was surprisingly well stocked. I ate a more satisfactory breakfast of a muffin, juice, and a banana. Yum.
Then I enjoyed a 40-mile sprint to Langtry. I say "sprint," because there was nothing in between to stop for. I only took a few breaks along the way. (Here's another picture of a border patrol road). The route started flat, but later on we encountered more rolling hills. These rolling hills added up to quite a lot of climbing. Thankfully, the climbs were not as steep or long as our day in the mountains. We also had better weather today.
At Langtry, we first stopped at a gas station right on the highway. This station had the worst bathroom on the trip so far, though it really isn't that much different than many of the other ones we've encountered. Yuck! Then we rode down to the Judge Roy Bean Visitor Center. It's a monument to the judge who was once the "Law West of the Pecos River." The history of Langtry and the "Infamous Bean" was interesting. They also had an impressive cactus garden that we strolled through and a nice gift shop/c-store. But I was most impressed by the sight of a clean, modern facility. The places we've been sleeping and eating these last days haven't been too bad. But they're all in rather rough shape. The restrooms were immaculate and everything was in working order. I appreciated that more after the last few days.
Next, we rode 29 hilly miles to Comstock. Along the way I saw a great deal of border patrol activity. We're riding on highway 90, the closest real highway to the Mexican border. Before long I crossed the Pecos River on an impressive bridge. The river is in a deep canyon, far below the bridge. I wanted to stop and take a few pictures, but the bridge was undergoing construction. The area at the end of the bridge where it would have been safe to stop for a snapshot was full of equipment. Oh well. From the bridge, it was quite a climb.
Once in Comstock, we visited briefly with a border patrolman, mailed some postcards, and ate a late, light lunch at a cafe there. We saw the Comstock Motel. It closed a few years ago, much to the disappointment of bicyclists crossing the country (just read travel logs on the Internet). But good news, it is being remodeled and will eventually reopen, according to the woman working at the restaurant. Part of the motel's parking lot was torn up, so they're doing some kind of work there.
Then we were on our way again, with just 30 miles left before we arrived at our motel near Lake Amistad. A long bridge over the reservoir was frightening to cross. I was getting a bit tired at that point, traffic was heavy, and the sun was getting low. The sun shining across the water looked very beautiful. Again, I would have loved a snapshot, but there was no safe place to stop on that narrow two-lane bridge.
Finally I arrived at the Lakeview Inn, exhausted. 111 miles! But it was a beautiful day. Now, we only have 12 miles to Del Rio, the end of our trip.