Sense of Wander (Cup O’ Dirt Metric #1)

I’d mapped out a 35-mile route, but with temperatures up to around 50°F and light winds, I went ahead and knocked off my first 100km+ route of the year in the Cup O’ Dirt Challenge.

When I reached the decision point in the route — turn right to head home or turn left to keep going — I was feeling good, so I took the left. By about mile 45, fatigue began to set in and I was questioning that decision. There was really no question of finishing or not, so I just kept pedaling, and ended up with 65 miles at a 15.3 MPH average (fast for me!). [Strava activity]

Roads were in excellent condition overall. It had rained just the day before, followed by sunshine, so the gravel was smooth and packed, with just a few short sections of soupy mud or, in one case, fresh gravel.

The route was a bit odd. I headed east to LaHarpe, wiggled back a forth a bit, then west and south to Humboldt, across the Neosho River, the some wandering around on gravel, back across the Neosho on US-54, then home.

The landscape is infinite shades of brown this time of year.
Stopped at the historic marker for the birthplace of baseball legend Walter Johnson.
The historic rainbow arch bridge at Humboldt’s Neosho River Park.
The always-beautiful Neosho River.
I did not feel like risking the mud on this minimum maintenance road.
The sign for this little country church is missing, making me wonder if the Salem United Methodist Church has perhaps disbanded. That would be sad.
DirtBum Written by:

I enjoy riding bicycles all over — city streets, suburbia, rural roads, gravel roads, dirt roads, rail-trails, and singletrack. I love exploring the countryside and finding the interesting and historical treasures hidden in plain sight. You can follow my rides on Strava.

One Comment

  1. Clayton
    January 27, 2017

    I love that area. That’s my home turf. Your pictures do good justice to its beauty. Great post.

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