Journey to the East: 9 July 2012


Stone table

Zazen on Ching-t’ing Mountain
The birds have vanished from the sky.
Now the last cloud drains away.
We sit together, the mountain and me,
until only the mountain remains.
-Li Po

In which we climb out of the Mississippi River valley
The route turned away from the Mississippi twice today, each time with a long hot climb out. The first of these pretty quickly turned south-eastwards and descended back to the big river. A section along the river was welcome except for the beat down roads, no shoulder and traffic. After the tiny town of Marquette the route looped around and made a big, long, fairly steep climb up to a bluff above the river. Pretty hot day as well, though not like last week. Spent the rest of the days ride on this bluff, usually on pretty bad roads and usually with more traffic than you’d think for back country farm roads. On one stretch of freeway I saw a hot dog helicopter pilot swooping,up and diving down to crop dust fields. After a bit on a quite busy hwy with no shoulder I turned off into the little town of Elkader where I camped at the city park. I arrived before 5 pm – a bit shorter day than the last couple which was all right. A couple hours later S__ (the Bob towing touron) showed up along with P__ whom he’d ridden with earlier. We all ended up, splitting the site which made for a congenial evening.

A hobo of the mind
I set out traveling
to confront reality

1 thought on “Journey to the East: 9 July 2012”

  1. Yeah, Iowa’s roads are busier than I would have liked, and most lack shoulder. (I don’t count a strip of dirt and gravel a shoulder.) After the nice roads of Minnesota and Wisconsin, Iowa riding was a bit of a let-down.

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