Day 3 – 6/4/11

Today’s ride was hot, really hot.

I left around 8:00 and headed South toward Lawley, AL which is near the Talladega Nat’l Forest.    From there, I took Rt 183 to Rt 80 to Demopolis.   It was quite comfortable riding until 10:00 when all f the sudden, the temperature started rising fast.  By 11:00 it was 94 degrees and still getting warmer.     At noon, it was 97 degrees and still getting hotter.   The heat, combined with the humidity made riding very uncomfortable.  I stopped about once an hour just to find something cold to drink and cool off in and air conditioned place.  

From Demopolis I took Rt 43 South to Rt 84 West and continued on this road all the way across Mississippi.  I could 0nly ride for about an hour before I had to stop to cool off.  I’ve come to like McDonalds frozen strawberry lemonade.

There are lots of churches in Alabama and Mississippi.  Sometimes there were 5 or 6 churches within sight of each other with the majority of them being Baptist churches.   There are many places where you see 3 Baptist churches located directly next to each other.

At one of my water stops, I met a nice gentleman from Birmingham who said that this was unusually hot weather for this time of the year and more like August weather.  He had just passed through a town where the thermometer at the bank said it was 104 degrees.

Just before reaching Natchez, I turned North on 61 to Vicksburg where I stopped for the night.

Miles Today: 503
Total Miles: 1,807
States: AL, MS

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Day 2 – 6/3/11

I got started around 9:00 this morning and headed towards Kentucky on I64.   As I entered Kentucky, I left the interstate and took Rt 23 South through the eastern Kentucky mountains.    Beautiful scenery and nice smooth roads made for a great ride.

Coal seems to be abundant in this area with many small businesses that sell mining equipment alongside the road.   I saw a couple of 18 wheelers moving various components of the large mining dump trucks.  These dump trucks are big.  they take up almost two full lanes on the road.

The other interesting thing was the number of yard sales.  Every mile or two there was a sign announcing a yard sale.  Many of these appeared to be long-term yard sales.

I got to Hazard, KY at around 1:00, stopped for gas, and took a look at the map to see where to go next.  I decided to head back out on to the highway and ride towards Alabama.  When I got to London, KY I took I75 South through Knoxville and Chattanooga.   It was starting to get pretty hot by this time and the sun was out in full force with only an occasional cloud t0 provide a bit of shade.

From Chattanooga, I took I59 into Alabama and stopped for the night in Birmingham.  When I stopped at 7:00 Central time, it was still a bit above 90 degrees outside.  The weatherman says it’s going to be 98 tomorrow.

Miles Today: 610
Total Miles: 1,304
States: WV, KY,TN,AL

Day 1 – 6/2/11

After taking a quick look at the map, I decided to head towards Charleston, West Virginia.   The GPS said I could be there by 7:00pm.  I was packed and ready to go by 9:00am so I started the bike and headed out for a nice long ride.

It was a bit cool this morning – only about 57 degrees when I left.  I took the Thruway to Newburg and then went West on I84 towards Scranton, PA.    By about 1:30 it had warmed up to about 75 making it a great day for a ride.  From Scranton, I took  I81 South to I70West and then I68 West through Maryland to Morgantown WV.   I turned South on I79 towards Charleston, West Virginia and ended up stopping for the night in Elkview, WV at around 8:30.  Elkview is about 20 miles North of Charleston, WV.

I didn’t hit any traffic or road construction so I was able to go 694 miles today.  It wasn’t the most exciting ride because it was all interstate highways but I did get farther than i thought I would.

Miles Today: 694
Total Miles: 694
States: NY, PA, MD, WV