Pine Bluffs Post - Serving all of Eastern Laramie County since 1908

By Gary Collins
Pine Bluffs Post 

A Penny for your Farthing


Gary Collins/Pine Bluffs Post

Julian Redman and his custom reproduction of the Penny-Farthing bicycle at the Texas Trail Market, Tuesday. The name stems from the relationship in size between a penny and a British farthing. The small wheel is the penny and the large front wheel represents the farthing Redman is enroute to Boston, having begun in San Francisco.

For the fourth time in seven days, a traveler has passed through Pine Bluffs on a journey across the country, or parts thereof, by unconventional means.

The latest adventurer is Julian Redman. Unlike the previous passers-by, Redman is not promoting a cause, philosophy or riding on behalf of a sister suffering from cancer. Redman is doing this for the challenge.

"I'm riding this Penny-farthing from San Francisco to Boston. I'm following the route taken by Thomas Stevens, who was the first person to ever ride their bike across the country. He did it in 1884, so I'm following his route on the type of bike he would have ridden at the time," Redman said.

Redman spent Monday night at the Gators Motel in Pine Bluffs. He had spent Monday cycling the 90 or so miles from Fort Collins, Colo. where he had detoured to visit a friend.

"That was my little side detour, but other than that, I'm following it," Redman said about his straying from the Lincoln Highway through Wyoming.

His unique bike, the Penny-farthing is a custom made reproduction. The replica cost him $1,200 as opposed to the $10,000 plus that an original would have put him back. The bicycle got its unique name from the disparity in sizes between the front and rear wheel and is the first machine to be called a bicycle.

"It was named that because of the farthing and the penny, in the UK back when they used both of those coins were roughly those sort of sizes, so next to each other they look like the bike, sort of," Redman said.

The bicycle has solid rubber tires which will never go flat. Redman states that they will last maybe a couple of thousands of miles. He has sent to friends along his path, spare tires so that he is never far from help. The hard rubber wheels, however, and the lack of shock absorbers makes for a rough ride.

Due to his lengthy journey on Monday, Redman looked to only travel for about 20 miles on Tuesday. However, having stayed at the Gators Motel Monday night enjoying the amenities of indoor comfort, Redman planned to camp out the following night.

"Some times I camp, so that's my sleeping pad," Redman said, pointing out the article. "I also got my tent and a sleeping bag in there. It just kind of depends. I'll camp tonight, for instance. So I try not to do a motel two nights in a row. It's gorgeous out."

The college history major did not indicated any time table for when he plans to reach Boston, preferring to enjoy his adventure.

"I like history and I like a good challenge," Redman said.


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