Day 47, to Marysville: Soybean fields forever - Chris Cross America - CycleBlaze

June 8, 2022

Day 47, to Marysville: Soybean fields forever

Along Highway 36, here is a glimpse of the rows and rows and rows and rows of soybeans I passed today. Above the endless green field is a cloud-filled blue sky.
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Wednesday stats

Start: Super 8 in Holton, Kan.

End: Marysville City Park in Marysville, Kan.

The Daily Progress: 74.15 miles

The Ascension: 3,002 feet, if you believe my GPS.

Ice cream flavors: A chocolate milkshake at McDonald's. I would normally hold out for fancier ice cream, but this was what was available, and it was the right move. I was happy to have the sugar.

Lodging expenses: Free camping tonight! I'll put a few bucks into the donation bin in the morning. And I forgot to log $5 in tips at the hotel I stayed in last night.

Food expenses: $11 at McDonald's

Wednesday ramblings: What you can learn about Kansas from 38 miles on the same state highway

Yesterday, I stopped in Holton because it seemed to be the best spot between my starting point and the destination that I would have aimed for, if not for the threat of thunderstorms. But Holton is not actually on the Eastern Express route that I'd been following. So today I headed north to get back to the route and then turned west. 

The wind was coming out of the north at about 10 to 12 mph. Using Google directions to get back to the route meant that I was on unpaved roads for about 10 or 12 miles. Again, that's heading into the wind. This experience reminded me to try to stay on the established route or, if I really want to chart my own course, to try harder to find a paved route. And don't underestimate the wind. Today's wind was fairly mild, but it still sucks a lot of energy out of you if you're heading straight into it. So far, the condition of the pavement seems to make the bigger difference, but I bet it's a different story when the wind is stronger than what I've faced so far.

More fields flank the road. Big, puffy clouds stretch across the bright blue sky above.
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When I finally did reconnect with the Eastern Express and turned west on Highway 36, I immediately started noticing billboards urging people to vote yes on Aug. 2 for something that would apparently ban abortion in the state. 

This billboard stood out to me. It shows a cartoon drawing of a small child in a onesie pajamas holding a teddy bear. The child has a single tear under his eye, and coming from his head is a thought bubble that says, "Abortion kills me."
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I noticed many different billboards condemning abortion and/or urging people to vote yes. I noticed zero billboards that defended a woman's right to choose abortion or that urged people to vote no.

More prominent than the billboards, of course, were the fields and fields of soybeans. And many gigantic wind turbines.

Marysville lets people camp for free in its city park. Washington, about 20 miles further west, does too. How welcoming!

It's a beautiful night to camp.

Oh, wow, the park lights are numerous and so bright. Maybe I'll wear my covid mask over my eyes to block the light. I could put the rain fly on over the hammock, but that requires getting out (and would make it too warm). Covid mask over my eyes it is! 

Good night, Marysville! (Please, really, Steve, if that's you [the guy I met as I entered the park], please stop driving that construction vehicle that beeps every time you back up, which you seem to be doing every 20 seconds at 9:30 p.m. ... For the love of all that is holy, please stop driving that thing around and go home. Thanks! Have a great night.)

Today's ride: 74 miles (119 km)
Total: 1,791 miles (2,882 km)

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