Written by: Karl Trimmer
Our day started out with our traditional “circle up” at daybreak in McPherson, KS. We discussed any pending issues with our community while staying at the First Mennonite Church, where we celebrated the Fourth of July with a cookout and conversation. Our host could not have been more gracious and kind to our group.
As our day began it did look like showers were a possibility, but fortunately the sun broke out from behind the clouds and rest of the day was just beautiful.
We had large puffy white clouds against a brilliant blue background. Occasionally the sun would be hidden by the clouds giving us a chance to catch a break from the 100 degree plus heat. All in all, the heat was dissipated by a breeze that is always present, so I hear, in Kansas. This gentle breeze aided the birds of prey as they cruised the plains in large sweeping circles looking for a snack.
It was not that way for the small birds. They would pop out of the grass and upon being caught by the wind, take flight in the direction the wind was blowing. I wondered if that was the way they wanted to travel?
As we traveled from McPherson I could see the change in landscape. We left the wheat, hay, and corn fields, and began to move into the tall grassy plains of Kansas where we saw more cattle and watering holes. More rolling hills to travel verses the flat plains of western Kansas and 82 miles later we arrived in Council Grove (so named for the large groves of native trees) where I learned that this was the last place on the trail to obtain wood for repair of the wagons before Santa Fe.
Council Grove Christian Church was ready and waiting when we arrived. A member of the church was a bike mechanic and volunteered to clean our chains while replenished our food and liquid with and impromptu lunch. After a little R&R we will be the guests for a BBQ dinner and evening discussion about The Fuller Center Bike Adventure.