Where in the world is Chris?

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Well folks, it looks like Chris has called it quits.

He's given the decision a lot of thought, and he's decided that this ride is just not worth being away for three weeks.

He said there's no real point in continuing if he's not having fun. He sounds like he's made peace with the decision, and talked me through his thought process, and I think he's right. He's learned, through this experience, that he can do as many miles as he wants on the bike, but it's not what he wants to do. He's having moments of fun pop up through the mundane, rather than the other way around. The driving force behind the decision seems to be that; however, his nagging achilles is playing a small part.

I will be heading to an early sleep and then driving 11 hours to get him tomorrow from Lima.

We should be back some time on Tuesday and from there he can relive the experience for you. I'm sure he's got great pictures and great stories to share and this blog will continue to live until he's told them all.

Thank you to everyone for your support and kind words. I know it meant a lot to me and got me through this remarkably well. Chris is an amazing husband, person, and friend. He gives his entire heart to everything he sets out to do and I couldn't be more proud. I can't wait to give him a big hug and kiss. He's already ridden almost 900 miles on a rigid, single speed bike in just 7 short days. Now that the decision has been made, I absolutely can't wait to see him and enjoy the rest of our summer together.

These races may consume our lives now and then, but in the end, it truly is just a bike ride.

Quite a ride it was.

Quite a ride it will be.

Stay Tuned...

I just talked to Chris in Lima and he is struggling with the decision to keep going or to call his ride over in Lima, MT.

He says he is absolutely fine physically. He has no doubt in his mind that he can keep going, keep going fast, and make it to Mexico.

Emotionally he has reached an enormous obstacle. He says he's not really having that much fun. He's riding pay-phone to pay-phone as his only motivation. It's beautiful, and he's still enjoying riding, but he wants me there.

I've convinced him to get a little rest, take a shower, eat some dinner and not make any decisions right now.

If it were my decision he would keep going, see if he can get past this, and reevaluate in a few days. Unfortunately though (actually, fortunately as I don't envy his decision), it's not my choice. He is the only one who can choose, and I hear him leaning towards stopping. He doesn't want to let everyone down, but that's really his only reason to go on.

For now I am going to try to nap as I am on-call to go drive the 10.5 hours to pick him up.

If I could go back in time, I'd be WAY more of a pain in the butt wife, lots of nagging, less supportive, then perhaps I wouldn't feel like I'm the one standing in the way of his dreams.


Stay tuned.

Start of Day 7

According to Chris's Spot-Dot, he has taken off from Polaris and is headed quickly toward Lima. Looks like he and Mary should run into each other today at some point, which will be a welcome surprise for them both I'm sure.

I'm not totally sure where he is headed for the day, although I can assume that Lima won't be enough mileage so he'll probably stop there for resupply/food and then I hope he keeps going and either makes it to Island Park (which will be another 80 miles from Lima -- pretty far) or at least gets close and camps out for the night.

I have a ride planned today with a our friend Erik. I'm over-analyzing how long I think it will take him to get to Lima so that I can adjust my riding plans so as not to miss his call from Lima. If I miss this call, I most likely won't hear from him again until tomorrow which I'm afraid would make him (and of course me) very sad. HMMMMMMM.

Today is the first day since Day 1 that I've felt depressed about this whole thing.

But... it'll pass with one phone call I'm sure.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

End of Day 6

Chris appears to be in Polaris for the night. He intended on going a bit further, but I didn't get to talk to him (my f****n cell phone) so I'm not sure why he's in Polaris as opposed to his initial goal of Grant, but either way that's where he is and seems to be doing fine.

Hopefully I'll speak to him in the morning, or he'll find a way to call back tonight, because now I'm really ticked off that I missed his call.

Middle of Day 6

Chris called at 2:30 from Wise River. He said he is having a great day and his mood and motivation have greatly improved from this morning. He rode "the cheater line" down Fleecer and thought that was "pretty fun" and now he's restocking and eating in Wise River and he going to push on to Grant. Tomorrow he should make it out of Montana! Yay!

Start of Day 6

Chris just called from Butte. He stayed in Basin last night but couldn't find a phone. He left Basin early this morning and his moving along trying to at least get to the Hot Springs tonight, but he'd rather get to Lima. He seemed to be having a particularly difficult morning, so hopefully he will get on the trail, focus, and have a better day. I know there will be good days and bad, but I'd prefer they are all good :)

Yesterday he said he got a new bike computer in Helena, and then it didn't work, so he had to turn around and go back -- which frustrated him to no end probably. Then he said he just wasn't able to really get into a groove riding. He rode almost all of the technical sections and even made it up a super steep/sandy/blah hill leading into Basin. His achilles still seems to be bothering him. It seemed better the other day, but he mentioned this morning that it started to hurt quite a bit when it got cold last night. I gave him Stefan's suggestions of tape and pedal style, so we'll see if that helps. He said once it warms up it feels ok. Let's all hope it stays together and gets feeling better.

He's mostly getting frustrated with having the last two days be lower mileage days (around 100 miles). I tried to tell him that EVERYONE has had those two shorter days and not to worry. He's still darn close to Matt Lee's pace, which is saying a lot considering he has gears, suspension, and has done it 5 times.

Hopefully I will get to talk to him tonight and hear that he is doing better.

It seems it will be a long day for both of us.

Friday, June 20, 2008

End of Day 5 -- maybe?

Chris appears to have made it to Basin -- one of his goals for the day. He wanted to make it to Basin in good time and possibly push on to Butte before stopping for the night. I haven't heard from him yet, so I'm wondering if he's getting food/a room or if he is continuing on. Why is it that the Spot doesn't update when you want it to? It seems to have a mind of its own and update only when it feels like it. The good part about that, though, is that after refreshing the page 900 times, when it does finally refresh it looks like he's gone SUPER far and I get extra excited!

He left a message on our machine from Helena earlier (around 3) and he was eating a good lunch and getting his bike outfitted with a new computer. He said the bike shop was awesome and they were hooking up a wireless computer and also sticking a wired computer in his pack as a backup. I, meanwhile, managed to successfully get his tracks loaded onto a brand spakin' new and shiny GPS from REI.

Maybe more later...