It's nearly impossible for me to recap the five days on Tour de Nebraska -- the scenery, the cycling challenge (hills & weather), the people, the myriad of towns, and the non-stop itinerary off-the-seat as well! My main observation of Nebraska is that it has more shades of green in a single view than I've ever seen before.
It wasn't an easy ride by any means, but a gorgeous setting with stops in small towns (the smallest, Monowi with a population of one), and plenty of good food made by friendly, welcoming people. There were more than 500 riders on the Tour ranging from 9 to 82 years old, and while most were Nebraskans, cyclists came from as many as 25 states and Canada.
The Tour was a 248-mile loop in the Northeast region of Nebraska, starting and ending in Plainview (yes, the town of Hawthorne in the movie, Nebraska). While we slept in just four towns, there were 4-5 rest stops each and every day along the way, so a real experience of what the area looks and feels like. The first day was 51 miles of non-stop rain; the second, 41 miles of 20-28 mph winds; and then the sun came out for the remainder of the miles! Yeah!
The final two days were spent in Niobrara, one of the oldest towns in the state, and a spot where Lewis & Clark camped on the bank of the river. It's also where the Ponca Tribe were relocated, and home to Chief Standing Bear. It's historic, peaceful, and scenic.
I've too many stories to tell, I'm afraid, and tomorrow I rise at dawn to head into the Badlands.
Cyclist, writer, teacher, avid reader, bike/ped advocate, nomad, pie lover