|Gas Fields Near Kersey|
Kenny had an early date with a bulldozer and it was clear to me he wasn't terribly excited about taking me back to Kersey at the butt crack of dawn. Realizing the hotel room in Evans was only a mile off of the trail I was to blaze through the town I came up with an idea - go backwards.
The distance was only twelve miles back to where the farmer had picked me up the night before - at worst I could travel the path east to west and then west to east. Kenny would meet me in Kersey at the same watering hole, so I could at least avoid doing the Evans to Kersey road twice.
Moving east was difficult to get used to at first. My body has been trained to never move in that direction for very long. I've put eight states in the rear view mirror and I'd like to keep them there. Why had I worked to acquire a view of the Rockies only to turn my back on them? Yet there was no other choice but to overcome these inhibitions - the gap had to be filled in somehow.
The surroundings made the day no easier. The words aesthetically pleasing do not come to mind when staring upon rows of soybeans dotted with a new invader - natural gas extraction wells. Fracking, a process by which the once hard to reach gas is extracted, is widespread in Colorado. Oil companies have rejoiced at the financial gains to be made, ranchers enjoy extra income from leasing their land, while environmentalists are concerned that fracking can contaminate water supplies. There also is strong evidence earthquakes are occurring much more frequently in the drilled areas.
A couple more incidents with dogs added some unneeded stress. These country canines don't appear to understand where their property ends and my road begins. Maybe a few whacks upside the head with my tent poles will teach them the distinction.
I survived all of my trials and another beating from the sun and circled back to Kersey by five. A tasty chicken calzone and a couple pitchers of water healed the day's physical and psychological scars. Once revived I headed across to the Kersey Inn and met Kenny once more. We sat on the deck and watched the black clouds on the southern horizon. Another near miss.
The once and future rodeo rider brought me back to the southern suburbs of Greeley where we again shared a room on his dime at the Super 8. My day of confusion had come to and end, but the Mac Truck can't return to the west bound lane yet. The road to Denver now leads south.
12 miles (or 17 if you count the five miles I did twice)/2464 total miles