We left La Junta at 10:00 am since the winds were projected to get increasingly stronger as the day progressed. The 19 miles to Las Animas was rough. The headwinds felt worse than they were predicted. We had only eaten a light breakfast and yesterday’s big meal was early in the afternoon. So our energy levels were near the “E” mark. We stopped at a restaurant and sat down to a good meal. We felt much better after that.
Las Animas is the only incorporated city in Bent County. Hence, it is also the county seat. The courthouse, which looks to be in great shape, is the oldest continuously serving courthouse in Colorado. Outside of that, Las Animas doesn’t appear to have a whole lot going for it.
We got back on the road and slowly turned back into the wind. We had 18-19 miles to go to the campground near Hasty. We slogged out six miles in about 50 minutes and took a break. Then we worked hard for nearly eight miles in about 90 minutes. We were crawling. I was trying to help break the wind for Kathy with mixed results because the wind wasn’t hitting us head on. It was coming from our two o’clock. We took one more break and then finished the final leg. It felt good to arrive at the campground even though it doesn’t look like much.
We set up the tent on the leeward side of a big tree, which was the only available shield from the wind. Once the tent was up and we got our bags and stuff arranged inside we got showered up. The men’s bathroom was disgusting so I told Kathy I was skipping it. She invited me to the women’s side. In comparison it was brightly lit, colorful, and cleaner compared to the men’s, which looked like an unkempt janitor closet. There are maybe five people camped in RVs here. I figured the odds were low that anyone else would come in so I used one of the women’s showers while Kathy was in the other. I was correct. Nobody else came in.
We settled into the tent while the wind kept whipping about. It’s supposed to die down later this evening. We fixed dehydrated meals, pasta primavera for me and spaghetti for Kathy. I also cracked open the bottle of Chardonnay I hauled today. We should sleep well tonight.
Tomorrow we think we’ll get an early start to beat the wind and try to make the 50 miles to Holly, Colorado. We’ll see in the morning.
Kathy – This morning we waited until 10am to leave so the temps would warm up a bit. Since the winds were not scheduled to pick up until later in the day we thought this was a good plan. 😏 We started out in the low 40’s, and our high temp today was supposed to be near 60. Well, that didn’t happen. The winds were only supposed to be 9 mph around 3pm. We thought, great we will be at the campsite before the winds pick up. Well that didn’t happen either. We arrived at the campsite around 4:45pm. Made for a long day in the saddle.
The winds picked up much earlier in the day and much stronger than the weather service initially predicted, which made it a cold ride. We rode most of our ride in sustained winds of 15-20 mph and had gusts up to 30 mph. It was a slow 39-mile ride today and not so enjoyable. We gave it our all and got through it, but it wasn’t a fun time. I am thankful for all of Hank’s support today as I slugged along.
The campsite we are at is a total dump. The website makes this place look like a palace. Not the case. It’s pretty much some farmland that they turned into an RV Park. It looks like it was flooded recently because there are large amounts of dried up mounds of dirt everywhere. There are only a few RVs here and they look like they are here permanently. We are the only campers. Lots of old junky cars, building materials, and just junk all around. The women’s bathroom smells like a mix of strong moth balls and mold. Not much works in the bathroom. And you don’t want to touch any doors because they are all stained black from people touching them with dirty hands. The ladies bathroom is also really dirty and the lights are very dim, but apparently much better than the men’s restroom. I don’t even want to see theirs. Happy to be clean and out of there quickly.
I’m in my woolies and have my hat on over my wet hair to try to stay warm. The tent is blowing like crazy but the wind is supposed to decrease around midnight. Ok, I’m tired, cold, and hungry so my post is not very positive. Sorry about that. Getting ready to eat our dehydrated meals, have glass of wine and relax. Hopefully I will feel better after that. I will end with somewhat of a positive note…I am very thankful to have this ride completed, and hoping for a better day tomorrow. 💗
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On To State #49
Tough day of riding. The wind was not your friend today.