Day 47: July 19: Fruita to Delta

Gretchen got an early start on the road, as she had an afternoon flight out of Salt Lake City to catch. I had more time, so I organized and packed my stuff, giving away the ice cooler and the other things I didn't want to carry to the next-door thrift shop. I asked a local where I could get a good cheap breakfast, and found a local diner on "the old highway". I was able to get a full breakfast with coffee for $3.00 with tax. This included a $0.27 cup of coffee. I could tell that this was an area that didn't get much tourist traffic. Inside the diner, weathered cowboys and other locals sat and talked over coffee and breakfast. While I was trying to leave, I ended up talking with three different locals who were curious about me and my bike. The bike has been quite a conversation starter, I've found.

I had to ride through Grand Junction to get to the road going south, so I decided that I'd stop at some bike shops and ask if any had a bike headlight bulb like mine. Of course, I'd asked about 15 shops previously without any luck, so chances were slim. But I stopped by three shops and a nice little Internet cafe where I checked my email.

The road south toward Delta and Paonia -- US 50 -- is through a long stretch of desert with no water or towns for 30 miles. But there are either shoulders or passing lanes the entire way down to Delta, and I didn't have any trouble with the relatively heavy traffic. The road goes past wide open vistas of mesas, but is only somewhat hilly.

There are no practical places to camp out of sight without going up steep hills off the road, so I stopped at Delta at one of their two RV parks. The place was nice and clean, and had a modem line for use by guests.