Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April 26, 2011. Perry to High Springs, FL. 76.5 miles.

We left the hotel on side roads, then rode on highway US 27 for 43 miles (with a head wind). The Mayo Correctional Institution, which we passed on the way, was huge--it looked like a small town and even had its own water tower. I did not take photos because there were two guards in my sight that had big dogs snarling on their leashes.... I thought it best to keep moving. The first sag was at about 19 miles, one fourth of the way through this ride. Marge (with the clipboard) was the sag driver this morning. Fiona is in the middle and Greta on the left. There were logging trucks and rock haulers all along this highway, but there was a shoulder for us to ride on, so we were all OK.

It was a rural setting, with cattle and horse farms, and wildflowers along the roadside. We passed several very large poultry farms, which did not smell very good. I think if I had to breathe that smell every day I would become a vegetarian.

At 45 miles into the ride we turned onto a bike path in the town of Branford. This was our only option for food, so Dianne and I stopped and got sub sandwiches to go, while everyone else just rode on. It was not 11:00 yet, so it was pretty early for lunch.

After we got off the bike path we were on country roads for 6 miles until we came to Ichetucknee Springs State Park. We entered the park and talked to Katherine, who was our sag driver by now (She and Marge split the sag duties with riding time). We ate our sandwiches and walked down to the springs where I cooled off my feet. I did not want to get my bike clothes wet since we still had almost 20 miles to ride. We saw the miniature horses on the way to the park--the mare is about 2 feet tall fully grown!

We left the shady park and then finished our ride in the hot sun. It's 88 out there now. When Dianne checked in she said the clerk asked her how she was (hot) and then asked her "how are the mice?" She made him repeat the question 3 times before she understood that he was asking her how many miles she rode today (76). Then he told her it was going to be 95 tomorrow. She said no, only 73. He said no, it is going to be 95. Of course he was talking about the weather and she was still talking about miles. Or mice if you prefer.... guess you had to be there.

Our friend Judie, whom we met on the northern tier last year, is coming to take us out for dinner this evening. What a shame that we won't be out in the steamy parking lot for dinner slapping off the no-see-ums.

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