Day 14 – Ride Across America, Dodge City to Great Bend, KS for GTG

The program encouraged my middle school aged son to work through and express his grief in healthy ways. This included talking in a group which was initially outside his comfort zone, but he later found group talk easier and very helpful. – Parent of Growing Through Grief student

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First, to all mothers reading this blog, I wish you a pleasant Mother’s Day tomorrow!

At 43 degrees, our morning was cool and we dressed in multiple layers to stay warm. Fog covered much of the surrounding countryside as we climbed out of Dodge City, but it quickly vanished with a gentle breeze and warming temps. Multiple large industrial plants were seen along our route such as, Praxair and fertilizer and farming supply companies. Endless fields of wheat lined both sides of Hwy 56 with harvest expected in the next month. Hundreds of windmills stood like sentinels in the fields, most waiting for an invisible conductor to instruct their movement. Other windmills moved slowly in unison reminding me of the slow tempo of Eric Satie’s Gymnopedia

Ponds along the roadside gave forth a cacophony of frog calls announcing their intent to eat and mate after having spent the winter in hibernation or being frozen solid. Still more frequent and intrusive, the traffic kept us vigilant, insisting that we ride single file on the shoulder. We always had to expect the loud sounds from trucks, vans and cars with bad exhausts to startle us as they passed.

We made good time with lighter winds and a slightly downhill route. In fact, we lost 1230 feet in the 91.5 miles. We finished at 2 pm, in time for me to take one of the riders to Walmart for medication prescriptions.

Great Bend is known for the change in the course of the Arkansas river to east and then southeast.

A few comments about the photos in the video below. Some notable sights include the Sod House museum – see photo – a replica of the original homes built from prairie sod cut into pieces for the settlers arriving in the 1870s and 1880. Photos of the museum docent and the sod house interior are shown. The museum also had a bike from 1901, when 19 year old Frank Spring rode it from NYC to Kinsley, KS.

We had lunch outside Fort Larned – active in the mid 1880s. Golden Valley company deals with the financial side of farming- mainly wheat. Other photos show the blades and bases of windmills ready to be erected. Only up close could I appreciated the immense size of the titanium blades.

Tomorrow, we ride to Abilene – 127.6 miles down the road with lunch and 2 sag stops along the way.

7 thoughts on “Day 14 – Ride Across America, Dodge City to Great Bend, KS for GTG

  • This technology of video and still photographs is quite remarkable. And Jeff, I have been enjoying your travel log. Wondering how is the fundraising coming along?

    • Thanks, Nancy. Yes the tech is amazing! I don’t know just yet. I hope that we can share the blog to many people. We’ll need many donors to reach $65,000 I know you would enjoy being on the road here – there is SO much to capture with a camera – if you had the time.

  • Jeff, did you ever consider being a noted author? You stories are so beautifully written. Stay safe and God bless the effort you’re making to promote a worthy cause!
    Ed C.

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