Archive for May, 2010

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 31, 2010

Monday, May 31st:  On Saturday, I met with Claude Sorlie for a bicycle ride to Sumner, NE and stopped at Tub’s Pub for lunch.  After lunch we headed back to Callaway, giving us a total of 70 miles of cycling for that day.  Along the way we saw a few fields where they are starting to grow their corn.  In about a month the corn should be about knee high.  Later that evening some friends, Randy and Sue Stratton, came by and took us to dinner at the Bon Fire Grill in Broken Bow.  It is a very nice restaurant and has very good food.  On Sunday, Judy and I went to Rose Hills, the local cemetery in Callaway to see the grave sites of her parents, grandparents and other relatives.  While we were at the cemetery, we met Robert Wilson, a cousin of Judy’s that she hasn’t seen for over 20 years.  It was sad to hear that his parents are now in a rest home.  Later that evening, some more friends, Mike and Kay Myers came by to watch some old family movies dating back to the 1960’s.  Today I decided to go for another bike ride.  I rode out to Oconto, then to Broken Bow and back to Callaway for a total of 58 miles.  When I finished the ride, I met Judy at Jo’s Café for lunch. 

Today is the last day of the month and I am submitting my 2nd End of Month Report on my 10,000 mile bicycle ride around the USA for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society:

Number of Days Since Beginning Ride:                          66

Number of Days Actually Cycled:                                   47

Number of Miles Cycled                                                  3451

Percentage of Miles Cycled (10,000 mile goal)     34.5%

Donations Received for Leukemia/Lymphoma                $1,197.00

Percentage of Donations Received ($10,000 goal)          12%

Our thanks to everyone who has donated to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through our website or with cash donations.  Every dollar received helps to find a cure for this disease and help those who are suffering.  Until next time . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy



Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 28, 2010

Friday, May 28th:  We are still here in Callaway, NE.  The part for our refrigerator is on order but has not arrived yet.  Earlier this week we had an interview with Mike Wendorff of the Callaway Courier newspaper.  Two days later it was already published and for sale at the local drug store.    On Wednesday we had very nice weather so I decided to get on my bike and go for a ride.  Judy suggested I ride out to Oconto and back.  When I got there they had some metal sculptures on display.  My favorite one was the motorcycle.  The sculptures were created by Charles Horn, one of Judy’s High School classmates.  When I was ready for the return trip I asked around town to see if there was another way back to Callaway.  They told me that if I went out to Hwy 21 and then down the Callaway River Road, that I would get a few more miles on some winding roads with some rolling hills.  I thought that sounded like fun, so off I rode.  As I was riding down Callaway River Road I passed by a farm that belonged to her dad, Ted Griffith.  Her dad is now deceased but the farm is still owned by her brothers and the land is rented out for farming.  There are a lot of areas where this plant that some of you may recognize grows like a weed.  I have always found this plant to be very attractive in appearance.  At the end of this day’s ride I had accumulated 37 miles of bicycle riding.  Later on that evening we went over to John and Joellen Wiese’s place so that they could take us on a trip into the pasture where they have about a thousand adult goats and about as many baby goats (kids).  There are about a half dozen large dogs that are Pyrennes/Anatolian mix which guard the goats protecting them from bobcats and other predators.  She also has Border Collies that she uses when she wants to round up the goats.  After visiting with her goats, they took us to dinner in Broken Bow at the Bon Fire Grill.   Thursday was laundry day.  Not much time for anything else.  Today I decided I needed to go for another bike ride.  Judy suggested that I head out of town on Hwy 40 to the west.  She said it would be about a 30 mile round trip ride with some challenging hills.  There were some pretty good hills, but far more challenging was the strong wind from the south that made it had to keep the bike going straight, especially on the down hill rides when I was getting over 30 mph.  By the time I had finished today’s ride I had 32 miles giving me a total of 69 miles for my 9th week of bicycle riding.  My total cycling distance is now 3323 miles in my quest to cycle 10,000 miles around the USA for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Tomorrow begins my 10th week of cycling and although we will still be staying in Callaway, NE, I will continue to cycle in the area until I am ready to resume my ride around the USA.  Until next time . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy


Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 25, 2010

Tuesday, May 25th:  Today I am playing catch-up with my blogs.  Today’s blog will cover Sunday, Monday and today.  Blogs for Thursday, Friday and Saturday are posted below, along with a posting showing my technique for fixing a flat tire.  Sunday was a nice day as we stayed around town visiting with friends and watched as a thunderstorm passed through town in the evening.  There was a lot of wind and rain.  Monday was another nice day of visiting with friends.  We had another thunderstorm this evening.  This time along with the wind and rain we had quite a bit of lightning and hail.  There were also some tornado warnings but none of them too close to our county.  We finally got our mail delivered to us that has been gathering up since we left on our trip.  One of the items in our mail was a recall notice concerning our refrigerator in our motorhome.  Evidently, there is a part that needs replacing that they say could cause a fire.  It is a good thing we arrived here early.  It will give us time to get it fixed before it is time for us to resume our journey.  We contacted an RV dealer in a town nearby to see about getting it fixed.  We plan on staying in the Callaway area until around the 13th of Jun and then riding my bike towards Blaire and/or Omaha, NE.  We will be visiting along the way.  Around 21 June, Judy will drive me back to Callaway for the re-union celebration.  Around 28 June, Judy will then drive me back to Blair, NE where I will continue my 10,000 mile bike ride around the United States for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Until next time . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 25, 2010

Saturday:  May 22nd:  Today we visit with friends in Callaway:  Stopped over to Jo’s Café.  Had breakfast and conversation with friends stopping by.  Went over to the library to see if we could get a Wi-Fi connection.  They had Wi-Fi, but for some reason we could not get on .  Visited with Bev, the librarian while we were there.  Went back to Jo’s Café for lunch.  Visited with Dean Shadel and his families while we were there.  Went back and relaxed at the White House for the rest of the evening.  Until next time . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 25, 2010

Friday, May 21st:  Today is the end of my 8th week of cycling 10,000 miles around the USA for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Today’s ride was 56 miles of cycling for an 8 week cycling total of 414 miles.  My total mileage so far is 3254 miles.  Today’s ride took me past a looking-glass pond where you can see the reflection of the trees as well as the trees themselves.  This big motor home has been passing me over and over ever since I started my ride.  This time I took her picture as she passed.  There are quite a few windmills in this part of Nebraska.  The water table is very close to the surface and the windmills pump the water into tanks that the farm animals drink out of.  Passed by Devil’s gap where you can get a nice view of the overlook on one side of the road and a view of Devil’s Gap on the other side.  Judy was waiting in Arnold, NE for me.  She had contacted her cousins, Larry & Ruth Ross.  They invited us over to visit.  When I got there I discovered I had flat tire #10.  Decided I would take this time to take photographs on the process of fixing a flat tire.  You can see this process on the post below this one.  We visited for awhile then went by the Arnold Sentinel, the local newspaper, where Kendra Veirs interviewed us about my bicycle ride.  We then went to the local bar & grill for lunch.  On our way there we passed a lawn mower going down the sidewalk.  We went back to Larry & Ruth’s house for cookies and ice cream before I resumed my ride.  Judy passed me again before I arrived in her home town of Callaway.  This big white house is her family home.  They are very close to downtown on main street.  Most every city has a water tower that provides the water for the city.  Tomorrow starts my 9th week, although I will staying in the local area and visiting with Judy’s family and friends.  I will continue to blog on our adventure and post them as I have Wi-Fi.  Until then . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 25, 2010


My step by step instructions for fixing a flat tire are listed numerically in order of the pictures posted below the instructions.

01:  Remove computer and any other items from handlebar stem

02:  Shift chain to large front chain ring

03:  Shift chain to small rear cog

04:  Turn bike upside down

05:  Loosen brake lever

06:  Open quick-release lever

07:  Pull derailleur unit back toward rear

08:  Remove wheel from frame

09:  Insert tire lever between rim and tire

10:  Pull tire bead over rim with tire lever and slide tire lever around rim

11:  Remove tire and tube from wheel

12:  Check the outside and inside of tire for any sharp objects

13:  Open valve stem and slightly inflate new inner tube

14:  Insert inner tube into tire

15:  Insert 1st bead of tire onto wheel rim

16:  Push inner tube until seated inside of rim

17:  Insert tire lever between tire bead and rim in opposite direction of removal

18:  Slide tire lever around rim until tire is seated. 

19:  Inflate tire and tighten valve stem

20:  Pull back derailleur unit toward rear

21:  Insert small rear cog onto chain

22:  Seat axle into frame

23:  Tighten quick release lever

24:  Tighten brake lever

25:  Turn bike right side up

26:  Replace computer and any other items previously removed:

27:  Ready to Ride

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 25, 2010

Thursday, May 20th:  Today I cycled 90 miles from Valentine, NE to Dunning, NE.  Along the way we stopped at Nebraska National Forest.  There are actually two separate units of the National Forest.  The one we were at is near Halsey and has 22,000 acres of hand-planted trees on over 90,000 acres of land.  The other one is near Nenzel, NE and has 2300 acres of hand-planted trees on over 116,000 acres of land.  We went up to the look-out tower, but no one was there so we couldn’t go up to the top.  We were, however,  able to get a good view of the forest below from where we were.  Near the entrance, they had some nice looking lilacs in bloom.  They also have a nursery where they start the trees from seedlings and nurture them until they are ready to be transplanted into the forest.  Just as we were arriving in Dunning, noticed a young lady working on her bicycle.  Went over to see if I could help.  She had as bike trailer with a young child in it.  The bike trailer had come loose from the bike and she was trying to get it back on.  Another neighbor, Pastor Lee Wonch, had come over with some tools.  She had quick release levers so the tools were not necessary.  Pastor Lee and I got the trailer back on but in so doing noticed that the springs on the axle were missing.  Pastor Lee told us where we could park.  A little later he came over to check on us.  He and Judy got to talking and found they knew a lot of the same people.  I checked my bike parts and found some axle springs for him to take back to the young lady.  Tomorrow we are planning on heading into Judy’s hometown, Callaway, NE.  Until then . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 19, 2010

Wednesday, May 19th:  Tonight I am catching up on my blogs.  Monday and Tuesday blogs are posted below.  This morning we got the motorhome ready for another day.  On the way out I put a donation in the mailbox as I left the RV campground.  Decided to head west on Nebraska Hwy 12 to see Smith Falls.  Hwy 12 is also known as “Outlaw Trail”.  That is because around the turn of the century (1900) and earlier, the outlaws would use that trail to steal horses and cattle.  It was not very populated at that time and the thieves could go up and down that trail without being noticed.  There were a couple of nice lakes on both side of the road.  About 30 miles down the road we found the turn-off to Smith Falls.  It is located on the Niobrara River.  We had to go about 4 miles on a gravel road to get to the Falls area.  The road was not made for my skinny tires, so I got in the RV and Judy drove us down to the Falls.  Once we got there we had to walk down some stairs and follow a pathway that led over a bridge crossing the Niobrara River and then follow a wooden pathway until we got to the falls.  It was a very scenic walk and the falls were impressive.  After our tour of the Smith Falls, we had lunch and continued west to Valentine, NE.  There has been a strong tailwind all day that has made today’s ride, even the hills, a very easy ride.  Now, 10 miles before Valentine, it has started to rain.  It is not a very hard rain; just enough to get everything wet.  Arrived in Valentine and asked if there was a bike shop in town.  I was directed to Yucca Dune Outdoor Adventures, located at 148 E. 1st St in Valentine.  It happened to be just around the corner.  I needed to go to a bike shop because when I arrived in Springview, Judy asked me how my chain was.  I told her I just had it replaced, but I checked it anyways and found out that it was overly stretched out and badly needed replacing.  I checked the calendar and added up my mileage and saw that it had been over 1900 miles since I last changed my chain.  (They recommend changing them every 1,000 to 1,500 miles.)  He gave me a good price on the chain and installed in for no charge.  We will stay in Valentine for the night and head south in the morning.  Until then . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – -Wes & Judy

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 19, 2010

Tuesday, May 18th:  Judy insisted that we sleep in this morning and make it a day of relaxation in Springview, NE..  I got her out of bed by 8:00AM.  We cooked bacon, eggs and toast for breakfast.  I cycled around the town  to see what was available.  Checked out the local grocery market, implement & variety store, stopped by the bank and the Springview Herald, the local newpaper office.  I asked if there was any place in town I could get internet service.  Talked with Mirya and Tanya at the Springview Herald and Mirya said she thought I could get internet service at the library.  Checked the library and found that they would be open at 1:00PM.  Mirya said she would like me to come back by later in the afternoon so she could get a picture and some information about my bicycle ride for the paper.  On the way back into town, Judy saw these little boys whipping around the street in this little go-cart.  She then went back with me to the library and I tried to get on the internet.  They have dial-up service, so after trying to get on for over half an hour, I finally gave up.  In the meantime, Judy found a stack of paper backs for sale and was picking out some good reading material to pass the time with while waiting for me and my bike.  All the while she was having quite the conversation with Jo, the librarian.  Judy was quite impressed with a quilt that was put together by members of the community to be raffled at the Keya Paha County’s 125th birthday, their Quasquicentennial celebration (Q125).  From there we went across the street to the Mob County Saloon Bar and Grill for something to drink (soda) while waiting for the  Springview Herald to re-open.  Talked with Toni and a customer named Dave Carr who was very entertaining to listen to.  We then went back to the Springview Herald, talked with Mirya and Tanya and had my picture taken with my bicycle.  I won’t be in town for the publication, but they said they would mail me an issue.  We then stopped by Bob and Carol Painter’s business.  He has a lot of very old antiques for sale along with a lot of other merchandise.  He is also the local gun dealer. He has a special gun; “Henry Big Boy”, a .44 Mag/Special Rifle, solid brass frame, engraved and dated for the Q125 celebration.  There will be only 10 guns available.  The #1 gun will be auctioned, the #2 gun will be raffled and the remaining 8 guns will be available for purchase.  After our visit there, we went back to see Jack and Beth at Flynn’s Ranch House Café for dinner.  Just outside the door was a rocking chair that Judy couldn’t resist.  It looks like it is made from parts of various farm implements.  Tuesday is Mexican night and Jack proved to be quite the cook as Judy and I both very much enjoyed our meal  Talked with some of the locals while we were there including Jo the librarian and her husband Harold.  From there, we decided to call it a night and headed back to our motor home to get ready for another day.  So, until next time . . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy 

Hello Fans, Friends and Family

May 19, 2010

Monday, May 17th: Stopped by McDonalds to get breakfast and use their Wi-Fi before starting on my ride.  While I was updating my blog, Judy wandered over to another table to take up conversation with a group of local ladies having their morning coffee.  They discussed things of local interest.  Most of what they discuss at coffee is of more interest that what you hear on the actual news.  Partly, because it is just fun to get together.  Judy shared with them information about my bike ride for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  They seemed to enjoy  Judy’s conversation, especially when Judy told of some of our mis-adventures.  Once getting on the road I found it to be a great morning.  It was a nice warm day with blue skies and a few puffy, white clouds.  The birds were singing, the toads were croaking, I could hear the insects in the fields and sometimes they would hit me in the face.  I think spring is finally here!!  I have had a few moderate hills to climb but I also have been given quite a few downhill rolling rides.  The grass, hillsides and trees are all green with color.  Took a picture of one of the many farming implements we have seen on the route today.  Judy was waiting for me down the road right across the street from it.  I could also see a car along side the road across the street from her.  I was still almost a mile away and the thought that was going through my mind was that it was a state trooper stopping to give her a ticket for some reason.  I knew she wasn’t speeding, because she doesn’t really have a need for speed on this trip.  When I finally caught up with her, I found out that it was just a friendly local lady that was on her way to Ainsworth, NE to pick up repairs for her husband.  She had stopped to see if Judy needed any help.  Judy was out of the motor home and over to the car just chatting away.  Once I got there we finished up the conversation, the lady went on her way and Judy fixed me lunch.  Immediately after lunch I crossed the Nebraska State Line.  We will be spending quite a bit of time in Nebraska as Judy’s Alumni is the last weekend of June and we haven’t even finished with May yet.  We stopped for the day in Springview, Nebraska after 44 miles of cycling.  Judy went inside Flynn’s Ranch House Cafe to get some information about the area.  Jack and Beth told us that there are some waterfalls nearby called Smith Falls.  They also have a place to park RV’s here with hook-ups.  We decide to spend the night and check out Smith Falls before we leave town.  Until then. . . Saving Lives One Mile at a Time – – – Wes & Judy