Tuesday, July 5, 2011

June 22, 2011. Clare to Bay City. 53 miles.

Today we got to ride on the Pere Marquette Rail Trail, a premium bike path! We got on the path right away in the morning and rode it for 30 miles. It even was equipped with comfort stations along the way!

Toby met a friend, Hannah, and they rode together most of the morning. Hannah is on this trip with her dad, and we met up with him for lunch in a small town along the way.

We passed through wetlands along the way, and I could not resist photographing this sign.

Toby and Hannah were doing monkeyshines on the trail, cycling with no hands while "holding up the ceiling", dancing the YMCA, riding "like an egyptian" and other silliness. It was all fun and games until Hannah tried a new trick, doing a monkeyshine while standing on the pedals... she had a spectacular fall after turning nearly a 360 right in front of me!

Between Bill and me and Avery's dad, we had enough first aid supplies to clean and dress her wounds. Avery, Toby, Hannah and Bill shown below. The kids did not do any more monkeyshines on the bike after that.... and Hannah bailed on the ride when we got to Midland and the sag wagons.

We had a nice break at Midland, crossed the tridge, and got back on the road, minus Hannah.

There was a homeland security drill at Dow Chemical today, so there were a lot of police and other emergency personnel on the road. The drill had just finished when we passed Dow Chemical. As we were riding along a rural road a policeman hollered out with a megaphone "there is a dangerous storm approaching. Take cover". Yikes!

It was raining by then, and we did eventually take cover under the porch of a building with a few other cyclists. When the worst of the storm was done we got back on the bikes and finished the ride. We are at John Glenn High School tonight, right next door to Christa McAuliffe elementary school. It touched me that they named a school after the first teacher in space, and saddened me that the younger folks had no idea who she was.

Our stuff did not get dry in the locker room last night, so I hitched a ride to the laundromat (yet again!) and dried our sleeping bags and pillows and washed the smelly stuff. This is getting old! Before this trip I had NEVER been to the laundromat on a one-week bike trip, and now I've been there twice! While I was at the laundromat another big storm came through, blowing away a few tents. Bill kept ours from blowing away, but got soaked doing it. What a week!

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