Just learned about a phenomenal opportunity to submit myself to a couple days of torture--riding across South Dakota on Lonesome Highway 212, through some of the most isolated parts of the US of A. On a bicycle! Just think, I'd pass through Belle Fourche, Fruitdale, Nisland, Newell, Mud Butte, Faith, Red Elm, Dupree, Lantry, Eagle Butte, Parade, Ridgeview, LaPlant, the Missouri River Bridge, Forest City, Gettysburg, Seneca, Faulkton, Redfield, Frankfort, Doland, Clark, Henry, Watertown, Krantzburg, and Dawson. All those miles (412 of them) and only go past one Wal-Mart, in Watertown.
The fun starts August 12, high noon, unless you're doing the "Hell and Back" version (824 miles), going both ways, which starts August 10. If you've traveled this road, you know what a zen-like state you'll be in when you arrive in Minnesota.
It's the Gut Check 212. Check your gut! Starts here and ends here. The record is 20 hours and 48 minutes, ridden by Bruce Martens in 2010. Way to go, Bruce! Just short of 20 miles per hour. Yikes.