Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Day 08 Out of Pennsylvania at last!

That would be day 1 of week 2.

Last night we were in Gettysburg. We left there at 6:39 this morning. On our way out of Gettysburg we passed the fields of battle and the numerous monuments to those who fought and died there. Unfortunately we were too preoccupied with the trip and the traffic to think of taking any pictures.

The terrain today was for the most part less challenging than previous several days. There were hills and false flats but at times, with the tail wind, we could really fly. We hit the Maryland border at about 9 miles and felt “joy and rejoice for we are FINALLY getting out of Pennsylvania” – that state seemed to go on forever. We went to Emmitsburg and stopped at a MacDonalds for drinks. They have senior sodas for $ .42 with the tax. We left there on Route 15. We stopped at a 7-11 for Gatorade and to eat two yogurts that we were carrying. Then we got back on 15 until we had to turn off. There had been signs saying bikes on shoulder but at 20 miles of that the sign say something like “bikes on shoulders ending in .5 miles. We got off on some country road without a shoulder and had a stressful jaunt through the countryside looking for Frederick, MD.

When we got to Frederick things were no better. The streets were narrow and crowded. We were hot. Did I mention that it hit about 90 today? We were hungry. At about 12:15 we stopped at the Frederick Coffee Company (coffee shop) which was run by some 60s types (although they looked to be in their 20's). The food though was very good. We rested and drank and then left.

The city streets were so stressful that we ended up walking a considerable amount. We got directions several times but discovered that people do not know their own town very well. After pushing the bike almost half a mile up a narrow street we got directions from a guy at a transmission shop who gave the best directions, not perfect, but close. It turns out that were only about a mile from a Best Western. Of course we rode a bit over two miles to get there.

We really had wanted to get to something line Point of Rocks, on the Maryland-Virginia border but we lost so much time in Frederick that we decided to stay even if tomorrow only ends up being a 25-mile day. Bikes on credit-card tour have problems that cars or campers do not. We must make it to the next point with a reasonable motel. In my case I need an internet connection because I am teaching an online course. Not every motel shows up on Google.

We finally got to this motel about 2:00 pm. I should not have taken that long but such are the joys of bicycle touring. We checked in, showered, and did laundry. I worked on my course for a couple of hours. Then we walked to a Weis supermarket to shop for dinner and road snacks for the next day or so. Now I am blogging.

Today’s ride: We rode 38.6 miles. Total trip time was 7 hours and 21 minutes.

Debbie’s emotionometer: Delight at finally crossing another state line. Feels like the trip is really progressing.

1 comment:

  1. Hooray for you guys. You are now past the point where I'm willing to go pick you up if things go sour.... So happy trails. We're rooting for you.... Ethan has been asking to go to Nana'a house... I'm thinking of spinning down to your place this weekend to mow the grass and such. Hope Ethan doesn't frak out when he realizes that you won't be there.