Day 19: March 23, Marfa to Alpine

You will note that there are no pictures in this blog post because the day was so heinous, no moment seemed like a Kodak Moment.

We had fully intended for the headline of this blog post to read “Marfa to Sanderson”, which was 110 miles, but MAN were we in for a different kind of day. We woke up on Sunday morning in Marfa and it was absolutely freezing cold and howling wind, like just ripping across the desert landscape at 35-40mph. We figured no worries, packed our tent (because it would have blown away) and headed into the building at our tent site for some coffee. “We’ll just sit here for an hour, two tops, and wait ’til the wind dies down and head to Sanderson,” we reassured ourselves. WRONG. 9am passed, then 10am, then 11am, and the wind was just obliterating our plans before our eyes. Finally just before 12noon we got hungry, decided to get some food in town, and then bike the shorter distance of 70 miles to a different town.

Well, breakfast took forever, which was just as well because the wind didn’t slow down at all and was still whipping at 25-30 mph. Finally by 1pm we decided we must get on the road, so we started heading East. It was the most challenging and frustrating day of riding of our trip, and the landscape was flat! Every peddle was a total struggle, and we both admitted later that we were a millimeter from turning back around and coasting back to Marfa at least 10 times each. We were crawling down the flat road at 6, maybe 7mph, which by the way is the speed at which we had scaled steep mountains.

27 miles and over 4 hours later we arrived in Alpine, TX, no where near where we had intended to stay but where we decided we must end such a miserable day of bike riding, we found a local motel and checked in. We found some local eateries, received comments from strangers on how red our faces were from the wind, and put together a new game plan for continuing across Texas.