Cycling The Great Divide Basin


The divide basin is a large flat(ish) area that splits the rockies in wyoming. Its dusty, hot, there are lots of ticks that will try to bite you and its long. (136miles by the official bike route I think).

To get to the basin from Landers first i had to cycle the wrong way up 2300feet into a headwind. I resented this climb. I didn’t really need to cross the basin, I hiked across in 2015 and didn’t expect it to be much different. I could have taken the shorter road route but that wouldn’t be much of an adventure and i considered this a necessary evil on my trip.

I waited around Atlantic City, a small town on the edge of the basin with a few other hikers and bikers till after 4pm when it would start to cool, and set off, the water sources being about 22mile in, then 56mile, then Rawlins at the far side. I have two 1 litre water bottles but bought a couple of extra litres for just in case a flat tyre or something cataclysmic slowed me down, but i soon ditched the extra water with the thought there will be someone else out here if it goes south. I currently have a buckled back wheel and is is very slowly getting worse. hopefully it can make an extra 140miles to Steamboat springs where bike shops are plentiful.   I was very fortunate to have a tailwind for the first time and this was great motivation to keep going till after dark, knowing the next day it might be gone. I followed the tail of a storm, the clouds just keeping me in shade. The wildlife was brilliant, I had mule deer running all over, horses, cows, hares and after sundown, a coyote that kept me entertained for a while. The coyote seemed chilled, but always tried to keep behind me, if I turned to it it would back a distance away and circle again. I rode into the dark with a poor headtorch that I love, and nearly wrapped a few times hitting ruts and sand. But progress is progress.

Sunset and sunrise are worth watching, the colours are unreal, like a brilliant filter has been applied. I took an hour out in the morning to play with my camera and see what i can achieve. The night sky was so clear, lighting every inch of ground. The below video is in the divide and I think its mule deer running across my path. This was great fun to see repeatedly over 60miles.

This is the sunrise while i was packing up and getting ready to cycle. All in i wouldn’t recommend cycling the divide or walking it, but it is beautiful and a dirt road runs through it. Worth a trip for the safari.

I am trying to work out how to climb as many 14,000ft+ peaks as possible as I cycle through Colorado, maybe one a day southbound? I’m gonna finish this beer and hit the road.

Love ya’ll. Benjamin



3 replies

  1. Can’t believe you really mean you wouldn’t recommend cycling or walking the Divide! Do you mean the Basin? (Second to last paragraph.). You write a brilliant blog Ben, great fun reading it and you’re obviously enjoying gathering the experiences for it! By the way, some of your photos are great, I’ve considered poaching them for my new photo instragram feed! Xxx


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s