Day 52: Escalante, UT to Bryce Canyon, UT (Tropic)
Total Mileage: 40 miles
Today’s ride is in dedication to Alicia Mendenilla.
Now that I have a defective back tire, I have to ask team members to borrow their tire for the day so I can actually ride. I had Kevin take a look at my back tire last night and he said there was an issue with the hub cap not rotating correctly and that the hub axel needed to be readjusted. We unfortunately did not have the proper tools to fix my rear tire, so I have to wait till we reach a big city that has a bike shop that can take a look at my bike. Unfortunately, all the cities we pass in the next couple of days are pretty small, which means I have no way of getting my back tire fixed. Only option is to borrow back tires! Thanks to Will for letting me borrow his tire today.
Thanks to the members of the Escalante community for an amazing breakfast and for joining us in an emotional dedication circle. Rachael made it a point to the team that since our time is coming to a close, we should hug team members at the end of the 4K cheer. A couple of our team members dedicated their ride to Natasha.
Today’s team name: Paleozoic with Ali, Hilary, and Zac. First part of the ride was constant climbing over 20 miles with a consistent grade, which I prefer over short hills with steep grades. Hilary wasn’t feeling well around mile 17, so we had to call the water van to pick her up. There was unfortunately no service, so Zac booked his way up to the summit to tell the water van she was feeling ill. Ali and I stayed behind to keep her company (Ohana!). Since today was a short day, we only had one water stop. Zac, Ali, and I booked our way to the host and did 21 miles in an hour and 3 minutes.
We made it to the host before 1PM, but had no idea where our point of contact was and where we would sleep. Three hours later, we find out we’re at the wrong fire station. Our point of contact is chief of two fire stations, one at Bryce and the other at Tropic. The directions led us to the Tropic Fire Station, but the host was expecting us at Bryce. We called the chief to explain our situation, and he told us we could stay at the Tropic Station for the night, so we were all set.
Since we arrived at Tropic early, we had time to visit Bryce Canyon National Park. Two waves of 4Kers went to visit the park, and I went with the second (the sunset crew). We visited Inspiration Point, Sunset Point, and hiked Navajo Trail. It’s crazy insane to see the unique red rock formations from the top of the canyon. The views were spectacular. Words can only describe so much and pictures can only illustrate so little. Experiencing the park in person and having a 360 view of Bryce is a memory that will never fade from my mind. Out of all the national parks I’ve visited on this trip, this is my favorite. I’ll leave you with pictures to help illustrate my point. If you ever come to Utah, visit Bryce.