Day 59 -

This morning, we headed out of Grants and entered the Cibola NF. Biking along the the Chain of Craters Backcountry Byway, we passed through the volcanic rock of El Malpais National Monument.

After yesterday’s arrangement-making session, it seems the Great Divide is punishing us for our hubris. Today, after already having handed us wind and mud, the trail presented us with a new challenge. The road was filled with countless tiny thorns and we were brought to a stop by literally dozens of tiny tire punctures. By the time we finished repairing the leaks, and had all of our tires filled with air it was almost dark. We decided to keep riding until our next flat, at which point we’d stop for the night and set up camp wherever we were. We camped about 100 yards down the road.

We spent the evening patching up tires and tubes, almost to the point of exhausting our tire repair supplies.  Jeff’s tires (tubeless) appear to be almost empty of Stan’s, the fluid meant to seal holes in situations like this.  And Brett is down to just a few spare patches after applying six to his front tire alone.  With only a small number of patches and about two virgin tubes between the three of us we’ll have to especially careful tomorrow to avoid more flats.