23. May 2016 · Comments Off on Day 16 – May 23 – Utica to Buffalo – 104 miles · Categories: 2016 Ride

Had an early start this morning out of Utica, Kentucky. Heather dropped me a few more miles down the road today as I have developed a sore leg and wanted to take it easy. I should have probably taken a day off but I need to keep going. We ended in Buffalo, Kentucky … about 100 miles away so a relatively easy day.

Not a single car passed me on the first 20 miles of road this morning. It was one of the most peaceful mornings of the Ride and I wound around idyllic farm houses with well manicured lawns and yards. The air was perfect and the scent of spring flowers and freshly cut crops added to the experience. The roller coaster of the road continued and I managed to get some good hills in (both up and down) before lunch.

tat-logoAround 9:00 AM, I stopped to speak with a Dutch couple and an American girl that were cycling the entire Trans-Am Trail (all 5,000 miles of it) to Astoria, Oregon. They were heading west in hopes of better weather as the first week on the road had been non-stop rain. They said that today was their first dry day and what a beautiful day it was.

I asked them about dogs ahead and they gave me some tips on how to deal with them: 1) stop, 2) be the Alpha dog, and 3) use your bike as a shield if necessary. I like the alternative, ride like the wind and scream your head off in hopes they think you are crazy and will leave you alone. Oh well, I am sure lots of adventures ahead.

After parting company, I travelled on miles and miles of country roads that didn’t even have a crack. What a day! Again, I only met friendly people on the road and was amazed at all the farm houses along the way.

ky_mp_badge_stateofmindlgAfter about a four-hour peddle I came to Rough River Lake and it was starting to heat up … I contemplated jumping off the bridge into the lake to cool off. What a beautiful area and one to go back to for some camping and lake activities. It was hard to leave such a pretty spot.

After Rough River Lake, the terrain became extremely flat. The last couple of days riding in Kentucky have been incredible and it was like Kristen Branscum, Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Travel and Tourism herself had rolled out the red carpet for me. The sights, sounds and fresh smells of the harvest made the long miles well worth it.

Crazy FrogYou may think I was hallucinating again — and while I did have a couple of dogs chase me — the strangest thing I encountered today was a crazy frog. It was sitting at the side of the road and just as I was passing, it jumped into my right shin and then went spinning into my back wheel.

It was the strangest thing and it must have jumped when it felt the vibration of my bike going by. I was going down hill and must admit I didn’t stop so check to see if it was okay. You heard it here first … in Kentucky I hit a dog and a frog. I am a bit concerned on what’s waiting for me tomorrow!

ABLINC 440Where I finished today in Buffalo, Kentucky was right by Abraham Lincoln’s birth place.

Unfortunately we arrived at the park after closing but a real welcoming officer allowed us to go in and walk around even though the exhibits were closed.

The old farm is now a national historic site and even includes the original sinking spring – a Karst formation supplying fresh, clean water in a cave in the middle of the property. Impressive site and history in this area.

IMG_2039 250The ride was interesting today in that about every 10 miles I went through a small town and outside of every small town there were cemeteries.

What was surprising is they all had 100 to 200 headstones representing the generations that had lived and developed that area of Kentucky – even Goodman’s!

It was truly one of the most picturesque parts of the ride and I am really looking forward to continuing on tomorrow.

Heather continues to be a support this ride and manages to pull up with a cold drink or sandwich at just the right time. It has been really nice spending time together and being away from the stresses of this past year.

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