joshua klevorn

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climbing state borders

there's a reason God established a day of rest as a pattern for us to follow. today's ride proved tremendously enjoyable after such a wonderful time spent with John & Geneva, which spilled over into this morning as we shared coffee and toast with them at their RV before packing up and climbing out of the gorge and east into Utah.

took awhile for the southeastern Nevada scenery to look "Utah", but ever so slowly, craggy outcroppings began to spring from the forested hills as we rolled closer and closer to city #3: cedar city.

pretty typical day on the road: riding through a few small towns, getting free ice in the gas stations for our bottles/water bags, and the occasional climb followed by the obligatory coast back down a mountain pass.

cresting our last one for the day, we were rewarded with a view of cedar city far off in the distance, the sun just beginning to turn the mountains a ripe tomato red. after more than an hour's coast down into the valley, we rolled into the not-all-that-glamorous city limits.

campers be warned, iron mission state park exists only on AAA maps, and we suddenly found ourselves without a place to stay. having stopped for dinner and crossed into the mountain time zone, it was getting late and dark as we rolled into a KoA just down the road. couldn't sweet talk our way to a free site, so we stealthed it under a brilliantly bright moon, and looked forward to Zion and (hopefully) showers the following night.

until next time,
may the road rise up to meet you

the road to Zion

headwinds. 23mph. all day.

gotta admit, our ride into Zion was one of the toughest we've had all trip. physically I felt fine; mentally, the wind took it to me.

coming off a stealth camp right off the main drag in Cedar City, we stocked up on provisions to avoid the higher prices in Utah's parks over the next week, and made our way down interstate 15 south.

with a flat tire five minutes in, skirting around police cars (since we were unsure if bikers were even allowed on the interstate) enforcing the 80mph speed limit, and a wind that would've humbled any seasoned tourer, we fought tooth and nail to make it the 30-mile jaunt south from Cedar City in order to turn east into Zion's canyons.

two glorious stops (in the shade of a Seventh-day Adventist Church and a gas station with free ICE just before a climb) were critical to reaching the town of Springdale, the heart of Zion's tourist industry. we passed upscale eateries and hotels nestled along the red road leading to the base of Zion magnificent canyons and plateaus. rock shops, cycle shops, souvenirs and more - Zion definitely caters to the wealthier vacationer, and even at this time of the year, is hopping with 'em.

in fact, were it not for a last-minute cancellation (made as we were being told the campground had no spots available) we might have been on the side of the road again tonight. but our Lord is good, and knows all our needs, and meets them. we were blessed with an amazing campsite that we will almost certainly stay at tomorrow night as well in order to fully experience & enjoy Zion's hikes and scenery tomorrow.

thanks again for the overwhelming support and love we've received and felt on this trek.

until next time,
may the wind be always at your back

rest! and a package!!!!


what a great start to a day off in Zion. loads of delicious homemade goodies that kept me smiling all day. thanks so much, mom and mrs. fila, these packages are seriously the stuff that keeps us on the road.

our first hike of the morning was unreal. switchbacks, canyon gorges, narrow outcroppings: all part of Angel's Landing, an apropos appellation. words can't even begin to describe the experience.

whether it was the sun cresting the canyon halfway up, a few daring scrambles over a trail I'd never thought would be allowed in a national park, or a cool breeze that lasted all morning, the climb was sublime, and culminated in a magnificent 360 view of Zion.

see? even the pictures can't quite capture it.

took a smaller hike past the Lower Emerald Pools back to the Zion Lodge (can't imagine what'd it cost to stay there, or how far you'd have to reserve a spot in advance, the park was filled with tourists the majority of the day), and caught a bus up to the Narrows, a part of the park where many of the slot canyons narrow down to just 20' in width.

the walk into (and out of) the Narrows, with the river bubbling gently right along the path and high rocky walls providing shade made for quite an idyllic afternoon walk.

late afternoon, we hopped back into town for a bike shop visit, another dip in the pool, and a feast for supper (and having our campsite already set up from last night? luxury!). the day off was well worth it, and to be honest, God couldn't have given us a better place to do so.

until next time,
may the sun shine warm upon your face

further up, farther in

tell you what, there are some incredible people out in the world. Fred Pagles, the owner of Zion Cycles, is one of them. last night and this morning, he gave us a wealth of bike advice and helped get a new rear wheel for my bike ordered and shipped directly from the manufacturer to Moab, UT so I could pick it up when we road through. the guy is a genius around bikes, and I can't plug Zion Cycles enough. if ever you're anywhere near Zion, stop in and check out the shop, Fred's a legend in my book.

here's a few of the more memorable moments of the day, a mon avis....

switchbacks out of Zion. climbing is easy when the scenery's this amazing.

hitch-hiking through the tunnel leading out of Zion to Bryce Canyon (couldn't get past the ranger at the entrance, apparently it's illegal to bike through the tunnel) with a pretty cool group of canyoneering fellas and gals who were kind enough to lend us the back of their pickup truck.

stopping in the shade of Mt. Carmel Junction's gas station for lunch. (and getting free ice! always love it when we can do that)

seeing God provide a free site for the night, complete with good phone service, free ramen, a hot shower and a warm room to relax in and eat our dinner before heading to bed. He knows just what we need and just when we need it.

and that's that! another day, a few more miles closer to our destination.

looking forward to Bryce and some cooler temperatures the further north and higher up we go in Utah.

until next time,
may the rains fall softly on your fields


some frosty tents this morning, boy was I thankful for my marmot bag and thermals.

sun didn't warm things up until 11am or so, and by then we were on our way to Bryce Canyon. after a short stop for some free coffee alongside Route 12, we hit a bike trail that led up through Red Canyon to the Bryce City junction.

pretty incredible scenery the whole day, it was excellent to take another afternoon off and hike the Fairyland Trail around the rim and into the canyons. later on, we caught the sunset over the rocks and headed back to our site for an easy-going, early to bed evening.

looking forward to a sunrise over Bryce Canyon tomorrow, and (fingers crossed) some tailwinds going north to Capitol Reef.

until next time,
may God hold you in the hollow of His hand


moonlit hike along the rim of Bryce just before dawn up to a glorious vista to watch the sun rise over the "hoodoos" .... pretty much set the tone for today, which turned out to be quite the venture along Route 12 East.

met up with Mark for an early morning hike down into the canyon, awash with brilliant reds & golds of every variety.

the trails at Bryce are an incredibly singular experience - at every turn, you're met with an entirely new landscape. never before have I been on such a short hike and had no sense of where we'd walked and where we were headed - the trail twisted between the chalky rocks in a delightfully disorienting way.

leaving Bryce was far easier than Zion, in the sense that much of the park's beauty spilled over its borders, and provided some spectacular scenery as we headed northeast toward Capitol Reef and Arches.

at our midday cycling feature, "the blues" (a short but tough climb), we began a dance between thunderclouds and lightning, getting drenched halfway up the ascent and subsequently trying to stay on the edge of the storm on the way back down.

took what we thought would be a quick stop in Escalante to dodge the last arm of the storm, and boy am I glad we did. not ten minutes after we brought our bikes under the porch, the heavens opened up and sent down a deluge of rain & pea-sized hail for the next twenty minutes. Mimi, the owner at Escalante Outfitters (where we took shelter), offered us a free spot to camp, and we gratefully accepted the offer.

Outfitters had a fantastic cafe/store where we got warm & dry before setting up camp for the night. came back inside for dinner and it was midway through some pretty fantastic pizza that we realized our feast was in celebration of 1000 miles on the trip.

rains came and went throughout the night, but we've got some pretty amazing tents and stayed high & dry, falling asleep to some folksy guitar music from a nearby outdoor concert under the pavilion behind Outfitters. just another Saturday night in Escalante.

until next time,
may the road rise up to meet you

sonUtah pass?

ah, the winds of Utah, will they ever be at our back?

had another incredible day climbing through Utah: down and out of Escalante's river canyon, up and over "the hogback" (a gusty road that wound along the top of a mountain ridge, no guardrails on eithet side) into Boulder, and closing out the day with a 9600' summit just before leaving scenic route 12 and heading east on 24.

God definitely had His eye on us today and provided excellent weather for the ride today (albeit a little too much wind in the face). followed a storm cell for most of the morning, which kept things breezy and cool at the lower altitudes. midday brought scattered clouds and sun, perfect for biking.

by the time we reached our last summit of the day (a considerable climb, and actually not too far below Sonora Pass in elevation) the air had cooled considerably, and we donned gloves & warm gear for a chilly descent.even though the climbing gets easier and easier the stronger our legs become, still helps to take a break every now and then.

ran into a lovely couple from Muskegon just before dusk in a gas station stop, and after trying our luck to snag a tent spot in an RV park (and failing) we hoofed it a few miles east on 24 before pitching our tents on the windiest plateau imaginable.

looking at a lot of miles over the next week to hopefully bring us into Salida, CO by next Sunday, Lord willing.

until next time,
may the wind be always at your back (and not blowing over your tent)

2nd Century BC (before colorado)

writing to you beside a most wonderful campfire in Green River State Park tonight. spoiled doesn't even begin to describe it. we had hot showers, hot food, a picnic bench and soft green grass to pitch our tents on! what a camp site.

day began with a quick dusting off of all our gear (even the insides of our sleeping bags) of a fine red dirt that seem to permeate even our panniers. we cruised down into Capitol Reef and enjoyed a marvelous coast through the park as the sun rose over the high rocky walls of the gorge.

from there, 102 miles of flat, easy-going road, eerily similar to our rides in Nevada. with only one stop in hanksville for lunch, we made great time thanks to the Lord providing safety, energy and no bike problems along the way.

and rolling into Green River State Park? couldn't have been easier, downhill on a quiet road with little wind, and stopping well before the sun set (in fact, we were all setup and unpacked and getting a fire going by the time it began to get dark). truly blessed by God's grace today, and thank you to all who are praying for us, because we certainly wouldn't have done what we did today without Him.

until next time,
may the sun shine warm upon your face



we serve a God who is alive, awesome and active in this world today. here's just a few of the times He helped us today.

RIDING. turning south onto 191 into Arches National Park proved an even busier and more dangerous road than the interstate we had just left. a ways down, we stopped and prayed a quick prayer for added safety over us as we biked. not more than a mile down the road, a bike lane (well-paved and well-marked) began that took us straight to arches and all the way into Moab.

(HITCH) HIKING. didn't feel like biking 18 miles uphill to see the arches, so we locked our bikes behind the visitor center at Arches and asked around for a ride into the park. met an incredible woman named Sharon, a retired nurse who was doing some sightseeing after a wedding she'd come out to Colorado to attend and before heading back to her home in Connecticut.

not only were we blessed by her presence on all the hikes to see the arches (and a cool car with AC in between each one!), she shared the faith we have in our Lord Jesus Christ.

it was such a pleasure to enjoy the Creator's handiwork with a fellow believer, and to hear of Sharon's travels (to places such as Antarctica! and she loves penguins, Eliza!) in the same light.

EATING. God bless the Haywoods from Salt Lake City. we'd found an all-you-can-eat pizza place in Moab before stopping at our campground for the night, and I had shared just briefly about our trip and our fundraising (having asked to use the plug near their table to charge my phone, which prompted the conversation) with the lovely couple before mark and I sat down to eat. a few minutes later, the waitress came over and let us know that the Haywoods would be picking up our check that night. folks, that's the stuff you can never repay someone for, and feel so overwhelmingly blessed by. thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Haywood.

moab is incredible (our walk-in campsite: amazing) and we'll be sad to leave such a sweet city so soon). pray for us as we head northeast and then southeast into montrose, CO and close the Utah chapter of our journey, which has been - in a word - unforgettable.

until next time,
may the rains fall softly on your fields