Mileage from start: 2,666
Today was all blue skies, white, puffy clouds, bright green trees, and roads lined with white and gold wildflowers.
The temperature was a pleasant 75 degrees and all the trees blocked any wind there was. The climate has definitely changed from the open plains. Rather than all our sweat evaporating and leaving behind salt residue, the sweat stays in this higher humidity environment. That gives the bacteria something to be happy about and makes us a bit smellier.
After we all packed up, we went back to town and had breakfast before we continued our bike north and Alena started her weekend.
Being a holiday weekend, the traffic was consistent, but it was mostly tourists with nothing pressing to do so riding roads with little-to-no shoulder has been fine. The pavement quality ranges wildly from brand new to dodging potholes three inches deep from winters of frost heave.
We past through still more lakes and spent nearly 15 miles on one of the nicest bike trails I’ve ever been on. It was nicely paved, separated from the road it paralleled by a median of thick trees, and wound through tall pine stands that cast a lovely shade.
Next was 25 miles on a road of similar qualities except the pavement wasn’t as nice. It’s interesting the different behaviors we see from drivers. Most give us ample space when they pass and do so with a kind wave. I have taken to trusting the semi and truck drivers more than anyone else because their livelihood is dependent on safe driving skills. Even someone who passes a little close for comfort is, at least, a brief experience. The most unpleasant encounters come from motorists who break the flow of traffic to let us pass through an intersection or merge. I believe that these people think they are being courteous and kind by taking the time to stop and wait. But it’s ultimately confusing and, therefore, dangerous. The whole reason independent drivers on the road works is that there are set rules and the prediction that those rules be followed. When a driver stops at an intersection for a bike even though it’s the driver’s right-of-way, it is confusing. To be kind to cyclists, follow the rules of the road and act predictably. Just pretend we’re very small, slow-moving cars.
Tonight we’re camped in a forest of mosquitoes and someone is prematurely setting off fireworks.