Today’s route was on everyone’s mind as the hardest day of the tour. Our route would take us from Buffalo to Ten Sleep. It was 64.8 miles long and had 6275 feet of climbing. The average age of the bikers on this tour was over 50 years of age. Lots of people got up early and started right at sunrise even though officially the course opened at 6 am. The mornings were pretty warm so we did not need to carry a lot of cold weather gear. I had my cowboy coffee, packed up, and got going. On the road around 6am.
Hard day equals early start
I was feeling pretty strong at the start. Definitely was petering out towards the top. The climb was relentless. I prefer climbs that are not steady and vary in pitch. We had to go over the Big Horn Mountains via Powder River Pass. Thankfully they placed aid stations only 11 miles apart. Once at the top it was a screaming 30 mile descent down a beautiful canyon to Ten Sleep.
Big Horn Mountains
Our SAG was awesome and found us a shady spot for our tents. We knew the shade would not last but it was good when we got there. It was the start of a bunch of 100 degree days. Since we were among the earliest arrivers’ in town we got cleaned up pretty quick. All the stops on this tour were in local schools and we camped on athletic fields. We used the school gyms for showering. It really pays if you are doing a tour like this to arrive early so you can get a shower without having to wait a long time. Other riders have the philosophy that just go into town first and eat. Once the line is down then go and get cleaned up. I just like to get the sweaty, salty clothes off as fast as possible. Prevents problems down the road like skin problems.
Tour de Wyoming keto diet day 2
So how did I fare on this hard leg ? Ride took around 6 hours. I ate one keto bar and had fruit slices at all the uphill rest stops. I also used an electrolyte tab in my second water bottle. Felt reasonably strong all day long. 1.5 weeks prior to this ride I was climbing Mt Audoban and took a bad fall and landed on my knees. My left knee took the brunt of the fall and after this climb would bother me for the rest of the tour.
As soon as I got to the nights stop I checked my ketones( 4.8) and glucose(84). You can see from my ketones that this was a much harder day than yesterday. I lit my stove and had 2 bouillon cubes for salt replacement. Wasn’t hungry or needing to eat with any urgency.
Big Horn Bandits team
As soon as my teammates were all cleaned up we walked to Ten Sleep to eat and drink. It was scorching. This town is really small with a population around 260. They do have a microbrewery , unfortunately it was not within walking distance and it was too hot to get back on the bikes . The lady that served us lunch in the cafe was also making dinner and breakfast for all the riders on this tour. Busy lady. At the bar we were served by the same waitress who had served us lunch at the cafe. It was here that I had my first of many chicken salads I would eat on this tour. Everything else had too much carbohydrates. The Tour de Wyoming put on a dinner that night which consisted of …..chicken breast and baked beans. The evenings entertainment was a musician Jalan Crossland. He was incredible. Tomorrow is the longest day of the tour so an early start is planned to get as far as possible before the heat of the day. Stay tuned for day 3.
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