Well I tried something that I thought was going to be a blast and it didn't turn out that way. But I tried it none the less and I think that's the lesson learned. First off, I have to say I did have fun and RAGBRAI on gravel is a great concept, I just went about it in the wrong way. I really have to thank my 75 year old dad for being the greatest dad ever! He hauled his adult son to Rock Rapids, drove back to Boone, then came to Spencer the next day to pick me up after I decided to bail on the idea. He hauled me to Audubon last year and picked me up in Newton two days later, and has taken me as far as Decorah before. What a guy! I know for sure that I have lots to live up to when Marshall (10) and Mitchell (7) want to start chasing crazy dreams. I really enjoyed spending some extra time with him and just being able to visit and hear stories I have not previously heard from him, and some others I have heard several times. So he dropped me off at Rock Rapids at 10;45 Sunday morning. Late start, but no big deal. I think I was the last soul in town to be riding a bike! I said goodbye and promptly headed North out of town for the Minnesota border. 5 miles later it was like I was in a whole other state! I rode across about 12 miles of the Gopher State to a point where I thought I could head South to hit Hawkeye Point, but I had turned too soon and missed it by a couple of miles. I hit a whopping 1590 ft. on my SUUNTO somewhere North of Littlerock and it was all downhill from there! In short, every town I stopped at was pretty much packed up and counting their take by the time I got there. I did ride some nice gravel and a couple of B roads and managed to enjoy some of it, but I have to admit that I found myself saying, aloud no less, "Where the hell is Spencer?!" I swear the last 12 miles took forever. Thanks to the 2 brothers from Team $pent who gave me a beer about 5 miles out. I needed that! The worst part for me personally has been explaining to my co-workers and family that I didn't do all 4 days like I had planned, and that it was just too much to do the way I tried. That and the annoying question, "Did you see Lance?" Give me a break! Later ! Travel Gravel!