Posted by: Mark Wollemann: On the move | July 11, 2016

Day 29: Halfway … and a little bit more

Day 29
Destination: (30 miles beyond) Valentine, Neb.
Monday’s mileage: 90. Total: 1,680

celebrating the midway point

Of course, Melody arranged to have the patrons of the Coach Light Inn, including our new friend Leroy Graves (left), celebrate my reaching the halfway point of this interesting endeavor.

I roughly estimated that this ride will be a 3,300 miles when it ends at the shore in Delaware, so we’ve designated Valentine, Neb., as our midpoint. I arrived on the wings of a strong tailwind after 60 miles (crossing into the Central Time Zone first), enjoyed a splendid lunch burger (with pie, of course). Melody and I stopped at a little micro-brewer, Bolo Beer Company, and Melody scored me a growler of the double IPA as a midway point gift.

And then I took off and kept pedaling, tacking on 30 more miles for good measure on this beautiful mid-July day. For what it’s worth, this ride through Nebraska has been mesmerizing for me. I love the rolling Sand Hills region. It feels like it could northern England or something (though it would need miles and miles of stone fences for the full effect). But it’s a beautiful way to cross this state. Highly recommend!

Central time

I screeched to a stop when I saw that I was entering the Central Time Zone. I’m not usually that observant while I’m riding, but I did get a nice shot.

Tomorrow will be an off day. It’ll be my third of this trip. I feel like I’m due. My nether regions are telling me I’m due. And I’m so far ahead of my pace that it’ll be a carefree and guilt free day out of the saddle.

Melody and I are planning to go tubing on the Niobrara River tomorrow and we met a charming and sweet octogenarian at our lunch who invited us out to his ranch to get a look at some of his library and historical artifacts. He’s a history buff, especially the history of the American West. He is a retired rancher and a recent widower. He said his grandfather fought in the cavalry in the 1860s in this territory, which helped fire his interest in history. We’re looking forward to hearing more about that from him tomorrow on a visit to his ranch.

Bolo beer

Beer for the pedaling fool.

But first, I’ll sample some of that IPA, we’ll head off down the road for a nice little celebratory dinner and I’ll enjoy a night of sleep that doesn’t include me waking up and worrying about eating the right foods at the right times to get the day started, um, right.

And speaking of the “right” kinds of foods, here’s a little more pie porn for you (cherry today):





  1. I can see the makings of a great doc: “Pie and the Art of Bycycle Maintenace”…

  2. Congratulations on the big milestone, Mark — and on crossing into a new time zone! Hope you and Melody enjoy your well-deserved day of rest.

  3. After enduring 11 hrs. of a power outage I was relieved to be able to get on here and find your latest adventure. Congrats! on entering the Central Time Zone and the +half-way point. Feels like you are closer to home. Enjoy your visit to the ranch and the rafting.

  4. You’re Rollin’ now! Caught Sports Middle…You’re falling into a grove on that show. And read the article and thought it was about you until the author wrote … Barely graying hair and a less than compact body!!

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