May 23rd, 2019 / (0km/0mi ride)
I woke up at 5am this morning and looked outside. Still dark, but all cloudy sky. For the next 4 hours I am undecided what to do. I check all available sources for how the day will look like, how the next few days will be, how things are a bit down my road and will be. And listen to my iPhone making “bing” all the time when the next NOAA Radar alert arrives. There’s warnings about heavy rain, hail, flash floods and potential tornados. The whole area is a mess. And I am right where it’s going to be and it is going to be where I want to go. So I am stuck here.
After much back and forth I decide to be pragmatic and get a rental car to drive thru that mess of a storm and hopefully emerge on the other side with better weather to continue my ride from there. Done deal. I get a sedan and like a miracle everything fits into the car without major disassembly. Only the front wheel of my bike has to quickly get off and then the whole bike fits onto the back seat, so to speak.
Rain is on and off during the remaining day and as I drive towards Wichita and later Pittsburg, KT, the bad weather seems to build up behind me. Marcel, who’s in Larned still, sends me a message that rain pours and hail set in. So I guess my decision was not completely wrong.
During my drive I stop ion Kinsley, which claims to be the (well, probably one of the many) mid-point towns right between San Francisco and New York, with 1561miles direct distance each way. So today is a somewhat memorable day: I made it half-way thru! Yay!!
In theory at least: there’s more actual road miles ahead than behind me. A few at least. But still! Well done so far, I’d say.
I make it to Pittsburg, KS at around 7pm. The sky cleared up the further east I got and finally the sun was shining. Fields around the streets were all flooded and rivers and lakes were filled to the utmost extent with extremely high water levels. So one can easily imagine that more rain will drown everything here. Let’s hope the rain ceases over the next days, too.
While the past days it was rather chilly all day long with temperatures going up to 19°C maximum and starting in the morning with a freezing 3°C, here it’s now all of a sudden 29° hot in the evening still and very humid. I guess that’s going to stay with me for the rest of the trip.
Tomorrow morning I’m planning to return the rental car in Springfield, Missouri, and continue on my bike. The weather around here should be more or less ok for the next days. I hope.