Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Winging it in Clayton, NM

The picture below shows that my right pedal has parted company with the bike. This happened as I was leaving Texline, and entering New Mexico. I went back to the Allsups to figure things out, because there's wifi and a motel there, and I thought I might be stuck there overnight. I was there for a couple minutes when a young man going in the store noticed my marine Jersey and said, "Semper Fi". In two minutes Scott and his dad loaded my bike in their truck and were taking me to the bigger town of Clayton's - 11 miles in the opposite direction from their route. In Clayton, I found a set of plasticky pedals I can use in the interim, to get me the 109 miles to the next chance for a bike shop. I got a room here and as I moved my bike in, noticed a badly worn spot in the tread of the rear tire.
By now, I've learned that stores here can sell me bike seat covers, grips and training wheels, but not tires or pedals. I went walking in the neighborhood - Clayton's kind of a cool little town, with interesting houses. I was looking in yards for bikes and at cars for a bike rack, to try to meet someone who could sell me a 700c tire. As I wandered a man rode past on a carefully commutered-out Motobecane. I yelled, he stopped and I met Pete, who made several calls, but wasn't able to find a tire for my bike. Pete was kind enough to give me a spare set of steel pedals off an old Columbia he's restoring. I'll stop by his and his wife's coffee shop in the morning for a cup on my way out of town.
Since I can't replace the tire, I've reinforced the worn spot in the tire on the inside with some adhesive patches to protect the tube, and moved it up front where it'll bear less weight. I'll try to make it the 85 miles to Raton tomorrow - keep a good thought for me. This is a different kind of trip than I had in mind.


  1. It seems to me that your USMC jersey is the most essential item on this trip! I wonder if I'd have similar luck in my Old Style beer jersey?

  2. Good lord man... a pedal like that should NOT fail.. and especially in that manner!

    Keep it up! How about ordering a new set and having it delivered overnight to a town ahead on the road?

  3. Dave, I can always ship you anything you need overnight if you get stuck. Good Luck! Doug/Colonel's

  4. David,
    This sounds like a grand adventure! I am loving every post. I'm not loving your mishaps but I'm loving the story. I agree with alpharat! The USMC shirt has helped you more than once. Better wear it every day just in case! I hope you are experiencing all that you hoped for. I can't wait for the book, Tour de David. May the wind be at your back tomorrow. Susan De