89 Miles - Bicycle Ride On The Texas Plains; Roby TX; Anson TX; Stamford TX and Haskell TX - March 12, 2011
Wind turbines east of Snyder, Texas.
Another day on the Texas plains ...
In the morning, westerly tailwinds helped.
I was riding well and felt like this could be a good cycling day.
I crossed into Fisher County, Texas and entered Roby, the county seat, at 32 miles.
This is another very underpopulated county, with 673 people based on the 2000 U.S. Census.
I rested at a gas station / convenience store. With my drinks and food,
I sat against the building with the bike beside me. This seemed like
a happening place for this small town. A few people pumped gas.
Then one older man in cowboy attire engaged in a conversation about my ride. He encouraged me that
I had chosen the right time of year to bike through Texas.
He asked, "Do you need money?"
I laughed and said, "How do you answer a question like that?"
He pulled a $20 bill out of his wallet and put it in my hand.
"Wait a minute!" I shouted. But he quickly walked away with a smile and drove off in his red pick-up truck. :)
Note: I recently stumbled upon
these videos of a man who rode his horse across America. He camped sometimes and
had a large motor home with his wife and kids supporting him.
The guy is an interesting character.
His videos are down-to-earth and entertaining! :)
Snyder, TX to Roby, TX
His day in Roby, TX.
I was having a good day as it was, but the $20 gesture had me even more happy.
Giddy, I snapped a shot of this wide load truck coming in the opposite direction. I even waved at him!
Once again I snuck onto the smooth grooves a few times.
If only I could bike on pavement like this the entire way!
Onward I rode on Highway 180 toward Anson.
The wind's direction had changed. It was coming more from the northwest, even north-northwest (NNW) sometimes,
but still a tailwind ever so slightly. I felt good physically, the
shoulder was clean and I probably had some elevation descent as I continued into the heartland.
I reached Anson by 1 p.m. This town was today's "safe destination," as there was plenty of lodging.
However, it was too early, and I had a perfect situation down the road.
From here, my route turned north on Highway 277 that had many towns with lodging. Stamford, 16 miles away, had motels. Then,
I could go another 15 miles to Haskell, another town with motels.
I rested and ate at the Dairy Queen in Anson, then went on my way.
State Highway 277 travels north and northeast toward Wichita Falls.
I know ... if you look at a map, you'll notice I was not making a direct route to the Atlantic Ocean.
This turn was the start of a northerly swing so I could see friends in
Little Rock and
The extra distance didn't matter much to me, but turning my trajectory did!
From Anson to Stamford, the road travels north-northeast (NNE). And do you remember
the way the wind was going? Yes, from the northwest to north-northwest (NNW).
Those gusts had become a headwind at a 45+ degree angle. Ahhhh!
I probably would have stayed in Stamford, but I saw only one dingy motel that I didn't feel good about
on the north end of Highway 277's business route.
And so I rested at another convenience store on the northern edge of Stamford.
The winds were troublesome, but I knew what I had to do ...
... I went for it! 15 more miles to Haskell.
For the most part, I had an easy ride from Snyder to Anson, then an average ride from
Anson to Stamford. But the ride took a sudden turn on this stretch. The winds tore into me!
I passed a sign that read Haskell was eleven miles away, but I was only cycling at
eight to nine miles per hour. That meant an entire hour on this road with wind blasting me!
I definitely experienced fatigue. Even brief moments of wooziness. Still, I hung in there.
If you're biking across America and coming through Haskell, note there are TWO motels in town, not one.
The first is a more expensive franchise on Highway 380 (east of the traffic light).
The second is the Haskell Inn, located a short distance south of the traffic light and town square.
I've stayed here twice and really like this place for their affordable rates and quality rooms.