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Day 9 - Sheridan, Wyoming to Moorcroft, Wyoming
146 miles
4000' (advertised as 3000')

The next day was another hard one. It was advertised as only 3000', but it turned out to have an extra 1000 feet, not so bad on it's own, but I really needed an easy day after the preceeding week. Robert and I started out the morning together. He had taken a sag over Big Horn, and was still worried about his achilles. He was starting to think about quitting the trip, but we all encouraged him to tough it out. At some point while descending, we were joined by Fred and Ed Pavelka (the other rider from Bicycling). The two had gotten quite a reputation as hammers, riding together each day, and usually reaching the hotel first. If I were covering the ride for a magazine, I would try to ride with all the participants and get their perspective, but I don't work for a magazine, do I! Fred did a good job of talking to a lot of the riders in the evening though.

At some point in the afternoon, my Camelbak sprung a leak, and I began the fruitless search for a new camelbak bladder in the wilds of Wyoming. Other than that, the day was pretty uneventful. The saddle sore I had been nursing along for a week was really starting to flare up and become seriously painful. I started to get cranky and I really wanted to ride alone. But the chivalrous men I was with insisted on staying with me. We later came to an understanding that when I say "go on", they would. I knew I was bringing them down, and I really, really didn't want to. It was kind of hard to get them to understand, but eventually they did.