The group was already having a second breakfast when Lucas and me arrived at a lodge 13 miles down the road. We leaned the bikes against the stone wall and talked quietly before walking up the steps to the terrace where the group was sitting inside.
The older men of our group gave me an amused smile, and the younger ones could not stop making innuendos. Lucas was uncomfortable and left pretty rapidly. I saw him cycling away through the big windows along the winding down pine covered road.
I stayed longer worried if I could make the trip today. The short 13 miles already wore me out and I had many more miles to go. I finally got on the road alone. After a few hundred feet of climbing my blood pressure dropped, my vision got blurry. Worried that I may pass out I got off my bike and sat down on the street side. I felt embarrassed and weak about being 36 and not having the strength to do this trip.
I lied down waiting for the dizziness to subside when I remembered that I had some Pro Bar Bolt Organic Energy Chews. Slowly chewing them my sugar levels (or nutrients) slowly returned and I felt sturdier on my feet.
The rest of the day would continue to be hilly for another 10 miles. I must have been at 3 mphs and I did not care.
Alaska was all of that what I imagined today (besides the passing out) cycling in an open untouched landscape. In the distance were lakes that emerged from the glaciers 8,000 years ago. The mountains were snow covered. The vegetation were deep green and yet sparse. It was quiet besides the whistling sound of the headwind that slowed me down even more.
When I reached Lisa and Joan they told me with excited voices that a live bear crossed the road in front of them within 10 feet. It happened all so fast that they did not have a chance to photograph him.