Day 86 Woodville to Greenville FL

Today I stated out still wet from the rinse cycle, but dried out on the unicycle rack.  It was cooler today as I rode on smooth back roads with rolling hills until I made my way back up to US 90 in Monticello.  The crew decided they would wash the car in Monticello and said they would pick me up in a half hour.  Thirteen miles later they caught me taking a break just West of Greenville.

Saw a snail crossing the road today.  Finally someone slower than I am.  I challenged him to race but he was headed in a different direction.  Whew!  I’m glad I wasn’t put to the test.  My legs seem to be getting stronger but my back lags behind.  Speaking of behind it is a bit soar from two days of riding in wet shorts.

The crew isn’t buying the wash, rinse and dry method of my cycling apparel, so they are  doing laundry the old fashioned way with a real washer and dryer.

Day 86 Stats:  Rode 44.6 miles at 11.8 mph, Max=16.2 mph, Calories=1155, Ave heart rate=108, Max=133, Ascent=873′, Descent=827, Max elevation=241, Min elevation=24, Temp=70 degrees, Rode 3:41 out of 5:07.  Total trip miles=2741

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Day 85 (Riding day 70) East of Tallahassee FL

Today was a little more interesting than yesterday.  Yes it rained today so I went through the rinse cycle.  Now I won’t need another bath for a week.  Rain is in the forecast again tomorrow so I’m thinking about getting an umbrella.

I weaved my way through Tallahassee along with traffic until I made it to the bike path.  Knucklehead does’t understand bike paths so I don’t try to have him give me directions when the route uses them.  Apparently I miss calculated the distance to my turn off, got caught up in racing a couple of bicyclists and missed my turn.  This detour cost me a total of eight miles in the wrong direction.  That’s a lot of extra miles at the end of the day on a unicycle, especially in the rain.

Day 85 Stats: Rode 41.17 miles at 11.9 mph, Max=17.7 mph, Cal=1127, Ave heart rate=109, Max heart rate=136, Ascent=525′, Descent=702′, Max elevation=225′, Min elevation=17′, Temp=70 degrees, Rode 3:28 out of 4:17.  Total trip miles=2697

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Day 84 East of Quincy

Day 84 my legs felt a bit better after a rest day, if you can call hiking through caverns restful.  Today I rode 6 miles when a lady stopped me and said she was from Toledo Ohio.  She said she saw the article in Jackson County Floridan the day before.  Not sure why but she was surprised to see I was on a unicycle not a bicycle.  I told her about the blog but she doesn’t have a computer.  She said she has a smart phone but it is smarter than her.

It rained on me while I was riding today.  It is hard to believe that in 84 days and 2650 miles this was the first day it rained on me enough motorists had to use their windshield wipers.  Then I got the great idea to put a bar of soap under my helmet and let the rain dissolve the soap and run soapy water over my person.  I was able to wash myself and my clothing all at once.  Very efficient.  Unfortunately the rain stopped before I could remove the soap and start the rinse cycle.  Never fear the forecast for tomorrow calls for more rain.  I’ll rinse tomorrow.

I’m sure glad Florida is flat, I would hate riding any more hills.

Flat Florida

Flat Florida

Day 84 Stats: Rode 43.46 miles at 12.0 mph, Max=17.7 mph (Yikes!), Cal=1254, Ave Heart rate=113, Max heart rate=139, Ascent=1066, Descent=1017′, Max elevation=196, Min elevation= -22, Temp = 70 degrees, Riding time=3:37, Total time=4:31, Total trip miles= 2656

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Day 82 Marianna Florida

I rode on US 90 from Westville to east of Marianna.   Once again the road was smooth with good shoulders and as the map says gently rolling hills.  Today the stars seemed to be aligned, although I could not see them through the sun.  Much of my side of the road offered shade and the breeze was minimal.  After working out the morning kinks, I cruised along pleasantly.

I crossed over Alligator Creek and decided to take a break to see if I could spy any alligators.  I didn’t see and alligators but I did see some alligator food.Turtle

I traveled through Caryville, Bonifay, Chipley, and Cottondale.  I had made 30 miles when I arrived in Cottondale, and I was thinking I might make 40 miles today.  A young couple (sorry I forget your names already) who were very enthusiastic stopped to talk to me and take a picture.

Then I pedaled onward.  The next town was Marianna with a population of over 6000.  There was traffic and traffic lights and rolling hills but I was able to stay in high gear through much of the town.  With all my focus on riding with the traffic I must not have heard Knucklehead and missed a turn. I continued on US 90 pushing on out of town.

The miles were piling up and it was getting a little late to meet up with my crew.  I heard my phone ring so I rode to a good stopping place.  The call was from the crew but there was no message.  I tried to call back but got no answer.  While I was waiting a photographer showed up and wanted to take some pictures.  He said he was from the Jackson County Floridan paper and a reporter saw me riding through town and sent him to track me down.

Then my crew called and with the help of the photographer we figured out I was off route and my crew was out ahead of me.  While the crew started back for me I got a call from the reporter who interviewed me for the paper.  My crew arrived and waited patiently while blathered on.  I’m going to be infamous. Check out the Jackson County Floridan.  10/17/13 on line. http://www.jcfloridan.com/news/article_e25bc242-36ab-11e3-b151-001a4bcf6878.html?mode=story

After riding 5 days and finishing with a 45 mile day I’m going to take a day off tomorrow.

Day 82 stats:  I rode 45.64 miles at 12.5 mph, Max=17.6 mph, Calories=1451 (enough for beer and ice cream), Ave heart rate=119, Max heart rate=140, Ascent=871’, Descent=878’, Max elevation= 228, Min elevation=81, Ave temp.= 76, Trip miles=2612, Riding time= 3:39 , Out of 4:22.

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Day 81 Crestview to Westville

Day 81 was a better day.  Clouds provided some comforting shade, and while the Easterly trade winds were putting me on a beat they were not too strong.  I rode along US 90 on smooth pavement with a good shoulder.  My route took me through the small towns of Mossy Head,  DeFuniak Springs (which is just fun to say), Argyle, Ponce De Leon to Westville.  All totaled up their populations don’t equal 7000 souls, and over 5000 of those belong to DeFuniak Springs.

I was a little concerned today with my mental state when I started having flashbacks of logging trucks that gave me so much grief in Texas and Louisiana.  Then I realized I wasn’t having flashback, they were real.  At least they were not doing 70 mph as they barreled by.

A little perspective.  I feel like I am moving slowly, but my first 7 days on this stage doubled the mileage I rode in the first 7 days of my stage one.  On stage 2 I have ridden 239 miles so far and have 405 remaining according to the map.  There are 7 map sets by Adventure Cycling covering the Southern Tier route across the US.  Today I rode onto map set 7.

Day 81 Stats: (Day 67 of riding) Rode 38.23 (most so far on stage 2) at 11.6 mph, Max=16.6 mph, Calories=1165, Ave heart rate=113, Max heart rate=135, Ascent=604′, Descent=794′, Max elevation=307′, Min elevation=73′, Rode 3:17 out of 4:02.  Total trip miles=2566

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Day 80 East of Crestview FL.

After yesterday’s effort, I wasn’t up to riding very far today.  It didn’t take me long to figure out my body had the same idea.  As I rolled along my back and my legs began to compete over which one of them could convince me first to end my ride for the day.  Both of them were making very convincing arguments.  My legs kept pointing out the head wind, but my back pointed out the camber of the shoulder on the road.  I was about to settle the debate by flipping a coin when my crew showed up.

I decided to halt the rivalry by claiming the crew thought I should stop.  At first I thought the crew had my best interest in mind.  But know I’m not so sure they weren’t  just concerned I might ride too far beyond Sunset King Lake RV Resort with the jacuzzi.

Crew Enjoying Jacuzzi at Sunset King Lake RV Resort

Crew Enjoying Jacuzzi at Sunset King Lake RV Resort

Sunset King Lake Pool

Sunset King Lake Pool

At this rate I may make across the country by Christmas.  On the up side maybe this is the way it was meant to be.  I haven’t pushed my rides much past the crack of noon so we have been getting to camp early enough to take in the surroundings.

Day 80 Stats:  Rode 29.79 miles at a blistering 10.8 mph, with a max speed of 17 mph. Calories=1024, Ave heart rate=113, Max=138 (just didn’t have the energy to push any harder), Max elevation=270, Min elevation 62, Ascent=948′, Descent=787′ It was sunny, ave temp=76 with a 7 mph head wind all day.  Rode for 2:45 out of 3:34.  Total miles 2528 in 66 riding days.

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Around Pensacola Bay (Day 79)

I Rode from Pensacola up around the Pensacola bay.  This route is considered a scenic road through the Bluffs of Florida.  Most tourists enjoy a ride along a scenic highway, but when I am riding on my unicycle I interpret scenic as challenging.  Somehow in one of the flattest states in the union I managed to ascend and descend over nine hundred feet.  That would have been an easy day in stage one, but not so much since I resumed my ride.

On top of that my crew got out ahead of me when I was riding a section of bike path from Milton. When my crew called to check where I was the call was dropped so I didn’t know what they were going to do.  They must not have been able to find reverse because by the time I caught up with them, I ended up riding my longest day for stage two .  Between the heat, humidity, hills, and the distance I was a whipped pup.

Day 79 Stats: Rode 37.83 miles at 11.3 mph, Max=17 mph, Cal=1220, Ave heart rate=116, Max heart rate=142, Ascent=947, Descent=935, Temperature= 80 degrees, Total time=4:12, Riding time=3:21, Total trip miles=2498

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