Posted by: twistsoffeet | June 7, 2011

Some Days Just Suck, But Then…


I woke early this morning, showered, had a protein shake with waxy maize, and brushed my teeth.

I hit the road at 6:00 AM, thinking I could get 18 miles of this two lane highway out of the way before a lot of traffic hit the road.

I was wrong.

I had my first flat five miles into the ride; I fixed it and kept positive.  However, this was the first of TEN flats today plus two on my trailer.  Several of the flats were not new holes… they were due to using “Slime Skabs” to patch the leaks.

Skabs suck. I went through 17 Skabs on a total of eight holes (plus two on my trailer) and not one held.  You should now say,  “Twists, did you read and follow directions?”

I would say emphatically,  “yes I did.”

Not one single Skab held and did what it was supposed to do.  The last straw was when I got holes in a trailer tube. Every hole was due to pieces of steel wire from steel belted tires. I did not bring extra trailer tubes, thinking it would be rare to puncture the tires… and up until now I was correct.

I have two spare Bontrager H2 hard case tires that may help with all of these flats, but I know that when in the mountains I will need the safety of a good dependable tire, so I do not want to use them yet. Any future tours will, however, be done with Schwalbe Marathon tour tires and possibly tire liners as well.  It will be worth it to have a tire that is absolutely dependable.

I wanted them this time but time and budget constraints prohibited me from getting them.

When the trailer tires blew, I was down to two slime patches; neither of which did the job intended.  I was in the middle of nowhere, Kentucky, and desperate, when Clay pulled up.  He offered a ride to Mayfield, KY, but that would do no good as I am out of funds, having spent the last of them on tubes and Slime Skabs.

He said no problem and took me to Mayfield Wal-Mart, where he purchased two 16 inch Slime Self-Sealing Tubes and a puncture repair kit from the automotive section.  He also said I looked dehydrated, so he gave me three bottles of water  and a half gallon of tomato juice packed with, amongst other good things, lots of sodium and potassium.  He then took me to a park to fix my bike, where he helped me and offered me some road kill venison jerky.

I Passed.

He said his diet consists largely of road kill venison and told me how to prepare a couple of types of jerky and pemmican. I may use the recipes some day, but on venison I have freshly shot while legally hunting.  The tomato juice, however, really picked me up and according to Clay, it will be tomorrow morning when I start riding that I really notice the effects. I hope so.

Tonight, I will spend the night behind a BP Truck Stop on Hwy 45 and Hwy 121 or 80.  It is a little noisy now, and no shade, but I am hidden fairly well and have permission.  They close at 11:00 PM, so it should get quieter after that. Jeff who works at the BP Station has also let me fill my water bottles with ice and water.  Thanks, Jeff!!

Tomorrow I will be in Illinois, but am uncertain on what route I will take once I get there.

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Responses

  1. You should write to some of the companies of products you like or think would make your trip better maybe they would donate to get feedback and their product to really be put to the test. Sorry your having such a rough time with tires I would have been in really bad shape because I NEVER would have thought to bring extras or repair kits. I can’t belive your almost to Illinois. Also maybe their is some company that might help out with money,lodging or food to be mentioned in your blog everyday?

    • I am actually trying to put into place some things that will attract sponsors, hopefully in the near future. However it is a very delicate line to walk when it comes to sponsors. Integrity is the key to me being happy with being sponsored. Also I will not plaster logo’s all over me and my bike or trailer.
      By the way I am missing 1.5 pairs of socks so the pair you found are probably mine. I can do without the 1 pair but the .5 pair is going to be difficult to come to terms with.
      I hope you and Robert and little K are all doing well.


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