Day 15 – Clayton to Amarillo

Day 15 from Clayton, New Mexico to Amarillo, Texas was the third of 3 very long days at a distance of 145 miles giving a 3 day total of over 440 miles! Being tired from the first two really long days was bad, but knowing that we were under time pressure today made it doubly tough.We started out from Clayton at 6.30am and passed the Texas border after 9 miles.

The Texas border - state No.7

The Texas border - state No.7

As we moved into Texas the terrain got flatter and more amd more boring – definately a day to crack on. The temperature however continued to rise and the afternoon was very hot. This created its own problems – getting enough fluid in to stay hydrated was most important but also problems with contact points became more intense, in particular the soles of the feet  – a phenomenon known as “hot foot” This is akin to putting your foot down on a very hot plate and is extremely uncomfortable. The only way to relieve it is a short period off the bike. As soon as you start again however, the problem comes back very quickly.

Texan "mountains"

Texan "mountains"

One highlight of the day, perhaps even of the trip was a close encounter with a live Cougar. I was riding down one of the flat boring Texas roads past endless fields of corn along with Franz,Elenore and Melissa when we saw what we thought was a dog in front of us. We  all started to brace for yet another dog/bike chase when both myself and Franz who were at the front quickly realised it was not a dog. We both went for our cameras but before we could get them ready the animal turned looked at us and then took off into one of the fields. It was only when it turned that we positively Id’d what it was as its short stubby face gave it away. It was about the size of an Alsation but very powerful looking. The rest of the days ride passed off without incident.

Today however was as much about the evening as it was about the day. Today was the half way point, both in miles and days, the one where we finished and stayed at the Big Texan Steakhouse and Motel – famous for its “Free 72oz” steak challenge. The steak (all 4 and a half pounds of it) is not free unless you can eat it all in under an hour. Thats a tall order for even the biggest appetite. When we first entered for our evening meal we arrived just as two guys were finishing the challenge. One guy had no chance but the other was very close and a sizable crowd gathered to watch him finish. The last bite disappearred with only seconds to go and he got a loud applause from everyone. He did however look a bit green by this time!

The Big Texan Steakhouse

The Big Texan Steakhouse

The Big Texan served Stella in BIG Glasses!!

The Big Texan served Stella in BIG Glasses!!

I caught the sun a bit today - despite using factor 30. The white lines are from the straps on my cycling helmet

I caught the sun a bit today - despite using factor 30. The white lines are from the straps on my cycling helmet

The guys celebrating the fact that we are now half way (l-r,Doug,Greg,Ann,Jay,Jason,Jeanine,Al)

The guys celebrating the fact that we are now half way (l-r,Doug,Greg,Ann,Jay,Jason,Jeanine,Al)

(l-r, Franz,Susan,Brian,Melissa,Elenore,Jonathan)

(l-r, Franz,Susan,Brian,Melissa,Elenore,Jonathan)

Stats for the day:-

Miles: 146 (2015 total to date)

Climbing: 2300ft

Temps: Topped out around 95F

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3 Responses to “Day 15 – Clayton to Amarillo”

  1. This is a bit more like it, beer and party photos rather than tarmac seen so far!

  2. Ouch mate! I’ve seen you half cut before but never half COOKED!

    Looks like its going well still amazed by the scale of the whole thing! 🙂

  3. that looks very sore you are supposed to put cream on every few hours you know not just once or twice a day!
    Jane x

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