C2C Leg#3 Day 2 Onawa to Council Bluffs + 2 nice guys

Jun 29, 2021

Day 2: Onawa KOA to Council Bluffs
Miles: 70.4
Total Miles: 116.9
MYZone MEPS: 1042
Temps:  66 - mid 80’s with thunder & pouring rain

We left the serenity of our campsite at 7:50am, and 66 degrees, eager to start before it got too hot.  

We got off to a beautiful start with fairly smooth roads and little traffic.  So far drivers have been very courteous and give us a wide berth, thank goodness!

We are using the Adventure Cycling “Lewis & Clark” route maps and I must say that there are towns named on our maps that seem more like ghost towns as we pass through.  Did Covid force the closure of so many businesses or was it something else?

Guess what else we saw today?


After one of the towns that wasn’t, we decided to have our own snack stop on the side of the road.  This is typical - glad we could find shade.

At about 30 miles we stopped for a peanut butter & jelly lunch #1 in Mondamin. 

Meet Nice Guy #1: It’s not every day that you meet a cycling, diving, woodworking farmer.

 But as we were munching lunch, Mike rode up on his bike, we got chatting and invited Mike to ride with us for a while - he pulled us a good 10 miles as we chatted and learned about corn and soybean farming. 


 We skirted the Loess Hills - significant because 1) they were hills (and there have been none so far) and 2) Loess is created by glaciers grinding rock into fine powder, which was then blown into these big dunes and is very fertile.  (Also likely why the Missouri River Valley is so fertile). 3) The only other Loess hills are in China.

Thanks Mike!  We really enjoyed riding with you.

We got to the town of Missouri Valley in time to get out of the rain for lunch #2 at “Pizza Ranch” with buffet pizza, fried chicken, and salad.  Seriously, there were no other choices.

We plunged into the -warm- rain and rode on.


We had about 25 miles to go with some gently rolling hills along the Loess Hills.  Nice change.

Then Doug got a flat.

Meet Nice Guy #2:  Jim

As we were replacing the tube, Jim pulls over in his truck and asks “Do you need a floor pump?”  

Holy corn, Iowa, you have some really nice people here!  

Who carries a bicycle floor pump in their car?  Jim does and we are so very thankful that you stopped and lent us a hand.

We talked routes and rides and RAGBRAI - that he loves to ride.

We rode the final 10 or so miles into the outskirts of Council Bluffs where we are staying at the Western Inn motel (no camping close by) and I’m going to go take a hot bath to soak my Hmmm-Hmmm and be ready for tomorrow’s ride.


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