Day 91 - Bismarck to Steele - Two Far 2021 - Sooo... Far - CycleBlaze

July 8, 2021

Day 91 - Bismarck to Steele

One million strokes

About the subtitle:

Our Garmins keep track of pedal strokes - as well as the myriad other things it tracks.  Of course Kerry records all this stuff in his bicycle log spreadsheet, and today he announced that we have topped one million pedal strokes on this tour - no wonder our legs are tired!  

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It was a nice ride today, but we can't seem to lose the persistent headwinds.  We've had winds from the east since the day we turned eastward in Montana.  Where are those westerly winds we thought we'd have?  At least we haven't had any more of the 20-40mph onslaughts, but still, we want an easy riding day here and there!

There were no interstate miles today.  We had good local roads with very light traffic, sometimes with a shoulder and sometimes without, but it really didn't make much difference.

We had a detour sign leaving Bismarck, but it turned out to be nothing.
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The road between the closed signs was clear and open so we just rode between the barriers and avoided the detour.
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It was 45 miles to Steele with no towns in between.  I got some North Dakota scenes to share.

A farmstead with a flock of sheep
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Kerry here...  As we were riding today, I remarked that ND was starting to look a lot like MN, with all the small lakes we saw.  It wasn't until we met "Sandy" that I learned that we were in North Dakota's Prairie Pothole region and the small ponds and lakes were actually Prairie Potholes.  

I had never heard of a Prairie Pothole, so a quick Google search resulted in this definition from www.epa.gov: "Prairie potholes are depressional wetlands (primarily freshwater marshes) found most often in the Upper Midwest, especially North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. This formerly glaciated landscape is pockmarked with an immense number of potholes, which fill with snowmelt and rain in the spring. Some prairie pothole marshes are temporary, while others may be essentially permanent."

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Crossing a causeway in the Bryan Mohler Waterfowl Production Area. We thought it strange that this lake didn't have an inlet or outlet, but we later learned it was a prairie pothole.
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Causeway view
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Causeway view
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Another Prairie Pothole.
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Yet another prairie pothole. They are also known as kettle lakes.
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A single row of trees planted along the road
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A herd of cows and a herd of horses - not much interaction going on between them. Those of you with knowledge of such things - do cows and horses hang out together in a pasture?
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Lined up on a hill
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Kerry wanted some close-up shots of canola plants.

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Seed pods on a Canola, or rapeseed, plant. Kerry here again with another FUN FACT: Canola is a specific cultivar of rapeseed, and was originally a Canadian trademark name - CAN (for Canada) OLA (oil, low acid). Thank you Google! :-)
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Steele Main Street
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Steele Community Center
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Steele elevator
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Yesterday, we saw the world's largest cow.  Today it is a sandhill crane.  (There's another world's largest animal in a couple of days, but I'll leave you in suspense.)

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Sandy and Kerry
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We have a lazy plan for the next couple of rides - 63 miles divided into two days.  Works for us!

Today's ride: 46 miles (74 km)
Total: 3,446 miles (5,546 km)

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Comment on this entry Comment 4
Terry OBrienHi Kerry and Sandy,
We are a day behind you. We are in Bismarck today and will be in Steele tomorrow. The next night we are going for Jamestown. What are your plans? Maybe we will catch up to you before you turn south?
Terry from Metal hip club.
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3 weeks ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Terry OBrienWe've been following you and hoping we would meet. We're in Steele tonight and are indulging ourselves with two short days between here and Jamestown. We'll be at the Comfort Inn in Jamestown on Saturday, the 10th. It would be great if we could get together!

Jeanna and Kerry
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3 weeks ago
Terry OBrienTo Jeanna & Kerry SmithHi Jeanna & Kerry,
Saturday night we will be in Jamestown at Quality Inn. We expect that we will get into town between 3:30 and 5:30. How about we meet and go to dinner. How about we meet in the lobby of the Quality Inn at 6:30? Let me know if that works.
Terry
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2 weeks ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Terry OBrienThat works for us. See you there.
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2 weeks ago