If you we’re reading this blog a year ago, you probably noted my advocacy of a 2 lane 1000 kilometer in a day ride as an alternative to the traditional freeway droning 1000 miles in a day superslab lunacy. Beside, on the long days abutting the summer solstice you can often cover those thousand klicks entirely in daylight.

Now I’ve been trying to get that annual 1000 km. ride in for about a week now, only to have it delayed by weather, repairing weather’s effects, etc.. Finally had an ideal midwest high pressure overcast day yesterday, and I took advantage of it for a run to a farm show near Pierre and back, the long way (of course). Didn’t get off to the most timely start though, worry about a democratic party grant application keeping me up so I missed a couple hours of light, not getting the F800S down the road ’til a bit after 7 am. Been down US 14 to Pierre before, so I headed down MN 23 to Pipestone where I headed west on MN 30 which soon becomes SD 34 to Pierre. ‘Twas rewarded with better scenery, obvious why the railroads chose the route that US14 copied instead of hillier SD 34’s route. Coming into Pierre, one is treated to several scenic miles along the bluffs and azure waters of the Missouri, then a short ride through one of Americas’s least populated state capitals. Took advantage of SD’s higher speed limits, covering the 230 odd miles to Pierre by noon, a quick lunch and internet accessing at Mickey D’s, and on to the farm show…

Wasn’t much of a farm show, but given the thin population in central SD and points west, not surprising. The venue was a rather nice drag strip, kinda surprising out here a couple townships out of a town of maybe 10,000. Looks to be the work of a local implement dealer, and suppose they organized the show because… What the heck, nothin’ goin’ on at the dragstrip on a weekday anyway. And being small, I was able to make the rounds pretty quickly anyway.

So it’s 2 pm and I’m pulling out, and what’s pulled up next to me but a nifty hack’d ‘Strom… Let’s see if wordpress will get it’s act together and post the photo? No such luck… Grrr! So it’s 2 pm, 7 hours of daylight left, and I’ve only covered 450 kilometers of my 1000 kilometer goal… Better get crackin’! Well, heading back the same way or on US 14 is going to leave me a couple hundred km short of that thousand, so I concoct a plan… North on SD 1804 to US 212, east to SD 45, then jog a few miles north then east on SD20 to Watertown and take it from there. Nice 69 MPH cruise, cross the Missouri bridge on 212 just because, and stop for gas after a hundred miles or so.

It’s hot, not as bad as yesterday, but still around 90. I’d drank a 24 ouncer of Diet Dew at the farm show but felt no need to relieve self of same, so decided to grab a drink at the Cenex C-Store. Got a large by mistake, but drank every ounce, and had an enjoyable conversation with a couple cross country bicyclists who were enjoying the tailwind, and took advantage of the free WiFi. What can I say… Cenex Co-Ops, the heros of the middle of nowhere! But having killed another half hour, ’twas time to get back to blitzin’ on the bike!

Couple fast hours on SD 20 brought me to Watertown, 200 km to go and only 150 km to home via the direct route. And I’m gettin’ a little sore, so pop in at Culvers for a quick dinner and downed an Alleve. Culvers was quick as was the WiFi too, and at 7 pm I was rolling again. Decided to square the diagonal “direct route” home, “direct routes” being no fun anyways… East a bit on US 212, south on SD 15, county roads, get to US 14 and I still need more km! So further south on SD 13 to SD 34 and back the way I came half a day before through Pipestone. Was tempted to stop at old long distance rider stop Lange’s for a big burger to celebrate the Supreme Court decision, but still full from Culvers and ’twas getting dark. Cut the mileage close- Took the long way in and a loop around town and the trip odo said 620.1 miles. 

The stats: 1000 km in 14 hours with zero freeways and at most 40 km of four lanes. I threw in requirement of 10% unpaved roads or city streets in the 1000k, and lost track at 70 km, probably went over that. But to insure I made my goal and encourage a bit of off the bike exercise, I’ve added some fine print that the unpaved/city requirement can be met by walking, with a credit for 10 km for every kilometer walked. Walked the whole quarter mile plus the runoff end of the strip round trip and then some, multiply by ten and I should have met the 10% unpaved/city requirement.

Got home, slept, and found out the grant has been delayed again anyways… I need to waste less time on politics and more time ridin’!