June 16th, 2017

June 16th , 2016 – Ontario to Victorville, CA – 70 miles
Today started with an early wake up time of 5:45 AM to try and beat the heat. After eating a delicious breakfast at the comfy Embassy Suite we slept at, we got on the road around 7 am. We immediately noticed how hot it was even this early, and knew we would be in for a hot day on the bikes. After a few miles we were out of the city of Ontario and road a while on some two lane roads as we quickly approached the mountains looming ahead. Next thing we know, we found ourselves on the historic Route 66 climbing some long and gradual hills (the worst kind) on some of the roughest road I’ve ridden on. There were cracks, potholes, rocks, and glass all around making us feel every single bump and pebble in our saddle. Needless to say, Route 66 will be memorable for all of us for a different reason.
 After hopping in the vans to cross the interstate, we were told by the crew that we had some very tough climbing ahead of us. The next several miles were some of the toughest that many of us had ever experienced. We were riding up some steep two lane mountain roads that winded through the dusty and very hot high desert, crawling along at a very slow pace. While going uphill, we would come to many blind corners hoping that we would come around to see some merciful downhill roads to rest our legs, but time after time we would be disappointed to see nothing but longer and steeper hills than we had already ridden. Just when we thought our legs would give out on us, we finally rode to a peak in the road and looked out to see a very long and straight downhill followed by miles of flat road. That was one of the best feelings to finally have conquered that mountain and reap the benefits while flying down the hill effortlessly. 
After traveling two miles in what seemed like no time at all we stopped for lunch at a small convenience store parking lot. After lunch, we rode straight into some very steep hills rivaling those we had just finished, but these were much shorter. After climbing those hills we traveled an easy 10 miles on some fairly flat road that allowed a much quicker pace than before. After a couple more crew stops and water refills, we rode into the town of Victorville around 2pm with blazing 105 degree heat pushing us to make it faster so we could get inside to the air conditioned lodging facility, a community center. We had a little downtime once all the pace lines arrived, which most of us used to nap and lay around. After a delicious dinner of pasta salad, pizza, baked chicken, and fruit with some generous longtime local sponsors the VIP Connection of the High Desert, we settled down and got ready for an early bedtime. 
Stoked to get out on the road again tomorrow and make a difference in the lives of some amazing people! 
Koa Patton
Virginia Tech