I need to start off by saying that you KNOW you’re climbing hills and/or mountains in New England when your heart rate gets to recover when it’s only a 10% gradient (all the climbs out west were long but maxed Out at about 7%). Every climb I’ve done in New England has had at least one section of 18 to 20% which is very difficult to do on a loaded touring bike.
Today’s ride was beautiful with two major climbs but lots of beautiful scenery to distract me from the difficult effort.
The circumstances that led to where I’ll be spending the night tonight are rather incredible. I had reached out to a warm showers host that never got back to me and was beginning to wonder if I would be wild camping by the side of the road when I got a message from a fellow that I met at my 2000 mile point when I was headed east and he was headed west. His name was also Dan. He rather accurately commented on my blog that we were living parallel lives in reverse. He met several of the same people that I had met on the road (mike from Fergus Falls and Lootie the around the world runner) and told him about. I encountered people that he had told me about (Donn at the bunkhouse and Chris the cab driver in port Huron that got me over the bridge into Canada. “Other Dan” had good friends (JT and Suzzana) that lived at the top of a mountain that was directly on the route. He told them about the story of his encounter with me and that I was headed eastbound with them. They said they’d be happy to help out in anyway they can, so other Dan gave them my contact information. They reached out to me and graciously offered me a place to sleep, dinner (with a wildlife show of a bear and a fox), and breakfast. Which I gladly excepted. It’s difficult to explain the feelings of gratitude for all the help offered by complete strangers caring for those of us out on the road.