October 24, 2015
Desert View -> a few miles past Gap: 68 miles

This morning we had a GREAT 30 mile long down hill. And it was finally sunny with clear skies! That definitely warmed us up :) Just a few miles after camp we passed the park exit and realized that we had camped where we weren't supposed to. Oops! 

We entered an Indian reservation just a few miles after the park exit and rode in it all day. There were lots of little markets with handmade jewelry and lots of Navajo Indian stuff. Other than that, it was just beautiful pink & red cliffs and the road we were biking on. Keep in mind were still following the edge of the Grand Canyon, so we can see it every once in a while. 

At one point we pulled up to this small scenic overlook that you wouldn't expect to pay money for. You basically just pull off on the side of the road and it's right there. It was $10 to go in 20ft to see but the lady at the fee booth (before we said anything) said "you guys can go, I know bikers don't have money." Hahah - umm ok! It was a beautiful view though! Huge red cliffs that dropped down ~1,000ft to the Colorado river. 

After more pedaling we made it to Gap. I guess it's a town - it just has a gas station and a grocery store. Our plan for the day was to make it to Gap then find a place to camp along the side of the road. The barb wired fence on both sides of the road made this quite difficult. However, we ended up finding a great spot where the fence was pushed back 50ft. Our tent is surrounded by trees and cacti! :P

scenic pull off

October 25, 2015
Gap, AZ -> the side of the road again: 61 miles

Considering we have been sleeping in the woods for the past 2 days I would really like a shower!! Not being at a campground is nice sometimes, but having a shower is key! Our destination is Jacob Lake & there IS a campground there. We went through some cool little places today like Marble Canyon and crossed what we thought was the only bridge that went across the Grand Canyon. Turns out it crossed a different canyon BUT it does cross the Colorado River that goes through the Grand Canyon. We also went through Cliff Dwellers and it had some cool rock houses. We ended up not making it to Jacob Lake...of course no shower once again! I know...gross. Luckily its been cold so we haven't been sweating our butts off, but still...we need to shower. We decided to stop at the bottom of the mountain and make the climb in the morning. There was no place to put up a tent except for on the side of the road. We don't really like the idea of having our tent next to a road where cars are driving really fast. There were a couple RV's pulled off on the side of the road so we decided to talk to them and see if we can hide our tent behind one of their RV's. They were really cool and thats where we stayed for the night!

bridge that crosses the Colorado River

Cliff Dwellings

camping next to the RV's

October 26, 2015
the side of the road, AZ -> Kanab, UTAH: 51 miles

Well we woke up and started our day with a climb! 2700ft in 13 miles, but it wasn't so bad. At the top, ice cream cookies and hot coffee waiting for us :) and boy was that DELICIOUS! 

Not to mention we had a great downhill afterwards! Since it was still pretty cold I bundled up for the downhill. We have great elevation charts as you can see:

BUT they aren't super accurate. The charts don't show small climbs, just the overall view. There ended up being about 5 steep uphills after I bundled up...it felt like I was in a sauna! I didn't want to take any jackets off, because I knew there would be a good downhill eventually. Anyways we did have a great long downhill and it was so beautiful! We coasted all the way into Fredonia where we had lunch. We were going to have lunch in the next town, Kanab, but we knew we had to have a quick lunch if we were going to make it to Mt. Caramel Junction so we decided to eat quickly in Fredonia. Just before Kanab, we crossed the border of Utah!! Whoo! & Kanab ended up being such a cool place that we decided to stay for the night :) Tomorrow we get to Zion National Park YAY. Sadly, I won't have my nice camera to take pictures...but we have our phones


October 22, 2015
Valle -> Grand Canyon: 32 miles

Started riding late in the morning because it was so cold!! We only had 30 miles to the Grand Canyon so it wasn't going to be a bad day at all. It was very sunny until mile 15 and it started raining...once again we were freezing. It was rainy and cloudy the whole rest of the day. Finally we got to the little town just before the canyon and sprinted to McDonalds for warmth and a coffee. We still had 6 miles to get into the park and I did not want to keep biking in the rain :( of course we kept going...we wanted to see the Grand Canyon! 

The second we got there we reserved a camp spot and went straight to a view point at the canyon. AMAZING, HUGE, UNBELIEVABLE... what else can I say? It was beautiful! What everyone says is true, pictures don't do it justice...you have to see it for yourself! 

We stayed in a hiker/biker campground area, which just means you will be camping next to other people and sharing fire pits, etc. We were totally okay with that, as you can imagine we only have each other to talk to all day :P We ended up camping next to a couple that is touring from Quebec to Florida. They were awesome & showed us up on making a fire haha we learned a few things.

It's Elk mating season

October 23, 2015
Grand Canyon -> Desert View: 24 miles

We rode around and checkout the Village in the park. There was an awesome art gallery there! Joe and I were also debating on wether or not we should hike down the canyon. We really wanted to but it would have taken hours and we would have had to camp at the bottom of the canyon and hike up the next day. You need a permit to camp down there and there was a waiting list until Sunday night! (2 days away) Clearly a hike wasn't in our plans. 

Oh well, we started biking around the canyon, closer to where we wanted to camp for the night. Joe and I want to check out the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and to do that we actually have to bike out of the national park about 140 miles and then we go back into it. Anyways the plan for this day was to bike around the rim, check out the many different view points, and bike just outside of the park. There's a bike path that goes along the canyon and it is awesome!! So many cool views and somehow each curve you go around there's a view so different from the last.

Right when we started biking on the path I realized my camera was acting funny. It wasn't working at all, I couldn't focus, I couldn't change the shutter or aperture. Joe and I tried everything, but the drive mechanism in the lens stopped working :( no more pictures...we got 3000 miles and of course my camera breaks in the GRAND CANYON! Out of all places...I understand we can take pictures with our phones, but it's not the same for me. We won't be going by a camera store until Las Vegas. Before that we are going to anther beautiful place, Zion National Park. It makes me sad that I won't have my camera for that, but I'll survive. 

So, like I said, we were going to bike just outside of the park. In the park, we're only allowed to camp in designated areas and there were none towards this end of the park. However, you ARE allowed to camp just outside of the park. We ended up camping where we weren't supposed to IN the Grand Canyon park. Not on purpose though, we though we were out of the park already. Oh well! We didn't get in trouble and it was fun :)

October 20, 2015
Prescott, AZ -> Ash Fork: 54 miles
Time on bikes: 4:23hrs

Russ made us a delicious breakfast! Eggs, sausage, eggs, and fruit salad...sooooo good. He was the best host. Thanks again Russ! We ended up hanging out at his house for the morning to wait out the rain. Once the rain stopped we headed out of town and only made it about 20 miles before we had to take cover in a coffee shop. We didn't get back on the road until afternoon and still had about 40 miles to go. Joe and I wanted to make it further than we did, but it was very cold and we definitely didn't want to be biking when the sun went down. Ended up getting a motel in Ash Fork...it was $30, almost the same price as camping. So of course we picked motel! Apparently it's the cheapest motel in Arizona haha and we were very surprised that it wasn't so bad on the inside.

Leaving Russ' house

Hey...that's me! 

waiting out the storm

October 21, 2015
Ash Fork, AZ -> Valle: 50 miles
Time on bikes: 4:40hrs

I TELL YOU WHAT...it's been COLD! Yesterday was 40° and today was so much worst. It was so cold this morning that we decided to wait until 9 to start biking. It wasn't much warmer though. Cloudy, rainy, and headwinds! We thought we were going to freeze. Took a long break at a grocery store and stocked up! We got a TON...this is what we ended up with: mashed potatoes, 40 tortillas, granola, pasta, pasta sauce, box of raisins, oatmeal, pop tarts, 2 individual fruit roll ups, small Parmesan cheese shaker, pancake mix, razors, hash browns, & beans w/rice. That's way more than we ever have but that will last us a while! And the worst part is that we can't really carry fruit or vegetables unless they are freeze dried :/ or if we buy them right before dinner of course. After getting groceries we headed to Valle about 20 miles away. It was a cold 20 miles! We were going to go further but we can't bike as fast when it's this cold...especially when I'm wearing 2 jackets and pants! Can you believe I'm still cold...while exercising...and wearing that much clothes! Good thing we stopped in Valle, because there were black clouds coming and it was getting colder and colder. While I was making dinner I saw mountains about 10 miles away with snow!! We stayed at this cool campground themed after the Flintstones haha

We were warned that this road has a lot of crap on the shoulder! 

 trying not to freeze while cooking dinner

Sunset w/ a thunderstorm

It's morning time now and we're about to head to the Grand Canyon!!! WHOO! So excited!!