A Most Aggravating Day (Vernal, Utah, USA)

Aggravating – that’s a good description of today.

We had been told we’d have an 8-mile steep climb up after the dam, and we were totally prepared for that.  What we weren’t prepared for was what came after it.

Eight miles into the day, the incline leveled out a bit – just a bit.  But we kept climbing.  And climbing.  And climbing.  Every once in a while we would reach the top – or so we thought.  Mother Nature would tease us just a tad before starting to climb again.

Finally we made it!!  We made it to 8428 feet – the highest we’ve been yet!!  That means DOWN!!! 

But no – it meant a small down.  And then more up.  And another small down.  And more up.  I’m not kidding!

Eventually we made it to the real descent – the many signs gave us more than adequate notice it was coming.  “5% – 8% GRADES AHEAD – 10 SWITCHBACKS”  I cracked up at the signs – with each switchback they counted down:  “9 MORE”  “8 MORE” “7 MORE”…  I guess they wanted people to know they were going down or something like that.

When we finally reached the bottom our hearts sank.  We had to climb yet again.  It just wasn’t fair.

The good news is that we met a man on the road yesterday and he invited us to his house – so here we are with Karl and his wife, Sue, in Vernal.  We’ve had a delightful evening chatting with them and hearing Karl’s stories.  I suppose all our climbing was worth it.

Flaming Gorge

Our highest point yet!

Davy grinding up the pass

Climbing yet another hill!

Finally - a descent!!

I LOVE the red sandstone of this area!

Back in the desert

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

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7 Responses to A Most Aggravating Day (Vernal, Utah, USA)

  1. John Egan October 17, 2008 at 9:16 pm #

    I warned you that US 191 to Vernal was a doozie.
    And, yeah. After that last summit it’s a HUGE downhill.

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  2. Greg October 17, 2008 at 9:41 pm #

    Hope you stopped to see the dinosaurs while visiting Vernal.

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  3. nancy October 17, 2008 at 9:52 pm #

    John – you’re right, you did warn us. Maybe we’ll listen to you next time!

    Greg – we’ll be going west instead of east when we leave here. We would love to go over to the dinosaurs, but John’s have trouble with his rims again and we’re trying to get to Moab as quickly as possible – and 191 looks like the fastest route. We’re kind of bummed about having to miss the dinosaurs, but I guess we’ll see other stuff instead.

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  4. Norrene October 18, 2008 at 12:15 am #

    If you come through Pahrump, Nv drop us a line if you need a place to stay. Doubt our house will be sold by then. I love reading about everything going on with your family. Makes me wish I was out there with you, enjoying god creations. Have a good one, wishing you only the best. Keeping you in our prayers!

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  5. Evelyn October 18, 2008 at 10:17 am #

    The newspaper arcticle was great. Loved reading your other blogs about travel and such. Keep taveling safely.

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  6. Gene Royal October 18, 2008 at 9:04 pm #

    I read all five of your blogs linked to today. I’m the old trike guy from Lancaster, CA. I think, since writing you last, I’ve acquired a used (couldn’t possibly afford new) Windcheetah. Found it’s only value is speed. It can’t pull a trailer or carry anything BUT it accomplishes this OLD man still being able to ride circles around teenage grandsons as long as they are on my old Sun. :-) . I still want to know when you will be the closest to Lancaster, CA (93534). I would dearly like to ride along with you some on the Windcheetah by trailering it to you.

    I WILL tour – if only for a week or so – before I die. I want another trike – see http://peter.ca/trikes/how-to-buy-a-trike.html I have communicated with Peter and I want the ICE he has – one like it. I believe it to be the perfect touring trike. Watch his Sky to sea video!

    In my early 40′s I sailed around the Caribbean a couple of years in a Cascade 28 with my first wife and our three children – she died age 44 after being mine for 22 years. Rode from Waco to New Orleans on bikes with one who became my daughter at age 16 when I married her mother (died after 20 years). My present, perfect wife can not physically tour though we ride our trikes, slowly, every day. I will tour with one or two younger men or grandsons while a granddaughter stays with Grandma – within 2 years.

    There is so much truth in all you write. I have believed and lived that way all my life – though not to the extent as have you.

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  7. nancy October 20, 2008 at 3:11 pm #

    Thanks for the invite Norrene!! I doubt we’ll make it through Pahrump on this trip – we stayed for for a few days on our last journey though!

    Evelyn – say hi to everybody for me, ‘kay?

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