It couldn't have started out better. After an evening in Sioux City on Historic 4th STreet, with entertainment by Smashmouth followed by an amazing fireworks display, we woke to blue skies, mild temperatures and just the right amount of cooling breeze.
Sag Queen 1 and Sag Queen A woke early to prepare breakfast burritios for us before we headed down to the Missouri River for the traditional rear tire dip with our new friends, Dr. Doug of Spencer, IA and brothers Mark & Marty of Grand Rapids, MI. Pure adrenelin fueled us through the hills of Sioux City (but what was up with that never-ending hill that didn't even look like a hill??) and Leeds (where we hooked up with 'Hood friend, Jim) out to the open road.
Somewhere along the route we lost Jim, a slightly less-trained rider than the rest of us, and assumed that he had fallen way behing or stopped for rest or nutrition. In Quimby, we reunited with Sag Queens 1 & A, refueled with Gatorade, water and bananas, and settled on a plan to meet at Dawghouse #2 - Puff's in Storm Lake. The first rider in was to be awarded the Yellow Duck beads... the equivalent of the coveted Tour de France yellow jersey.
I was definitely losing steam finishing the ride (a long 23-mile finish into Storm Lake from Quimby), but did my best to go for the gold (or yellow). Much to our surprise, we walked into Puff's to find Jim, the supposed lost one, sitting there in the Yellow Duck beads.
All along the road and at all stops, Hair of the Dawg was getting rave reviews and we were getting many requests for jerseys, tattoos and mix. We were even announced by the DJ in Washto as we were riding through town.
And the day is winding down perfectly at the home of our hosts, John & Sandy. We have bellies full of pasta and sweet corn, and comfortable accommodations for the night. This is truly a one-of-a-kind experience... a great Iowa tradition, and one we hope you can all take part in some day. G'night!