After the punishing winds of the first day we were hoping for a more pleasant day two. We were not disappointed. Sixty-two miles of rolling hills took us briefly into Iowa, where the Novartis Animal Health plant in Larchwood set up a stop for us with gazebos for shade, free water and bananas, and for a great price, a lunch of hamburgers or brats, salads, chips, drinks, and desert.
With only 20 miles to our overnight location of Brandon, SD, we had seen some headwinds and crosswinds, but they were nothing compared to Sunday. So we rode into town in the early afternoon. As we arrived in Brandon we passed a retirement center that gave me the chance to atone for something I've regretted since my first Tour de Kota. I stopped and had a cold drink and visited with some of the residents, who were holding signs welcoming us to town, and generally just enjoying seeing all the cyclists ride by.
We camped in the park that night, with many food vendors on hand, shuttles to take us downtown, and free entertainment by the beer garden from 5:00 to 9:00pm. It felt really good to get in early and have the rest of the day to relax, recuperate, and prepare for the next two near-century days ahead of us.