24 April 2008


I woke early after a good rest on Wednesday and was out of the Interstate Motel by half six into a really chilly and foggy morning so I had my leg warmer lycra trouser things on within 5 minutes.

Pleasantly I made it across the state border in about 3-4 miles, all downhill, which continued to my breakfast beef jerky stop! Everywhere I stop seems to lack any fruit apart from raisins (which are becoming a staple of my diet) and so I have the choice of crisps or jerky or snickers bars.. I am doing well and sticking to my 'no fizzy drinks' rule which I have been on since January although it is getting tough when you stop for food and they don't serve juice so you are stuck with water..

The rest of the day was uneventful apart from the usual high speed encounters with pick up trucks and lorries until just past a town called Bypro when I managed to get hit in the back by a lump of coal from a passing coal truck on a descent down a hill! I had no idea what it was at first as it felt like I had just been punched in the back but when I got to a safe place to stop I saw a black mark on my shirt where I had been hit. I mentioned this in the next town and apparently coal lorries contantly spill lumps into the road (I have seen a fair few pieces along the way) but I didn't expect this!

Anyhow, I made it to Hindman by teatime and pitched the tent up pretty quickly and was off to bed with lots of insects and beetles crawling around on the outside of the tent :-(

Today was a pretty relaxed day of riding - lots of rollercoaster hills which I am getting more confident with racing down in order to maintain some momentum. I guess you have to strike a balance between being cautious and having a tough climb so I hope I have found a happy medium. The only scary part is when you race down a hill and go through an exposed area ie with no trees either side such as on a bridge as then you get hit with a cross wind that comes out of nowhere and knocks you a foot to one side or the other.

No fun filled adventures to speak of today other than more blazing sunshine which I thought I had left behind in Virginia, although apparently we are in for storms tomorrow so I am B&B'ing it tonight rather than having a wet tent in the morning.


Anonymous said...

So in addition to worrying about cars and dogs, we also have to worry about flying lumps of coal? Thanks for the advice on packing light. I'll be working on paring down over the next few week.

Anonymous said...

Hi Andy,

Its the last day of my [lazy] cycle trip in Viet Nam and just got the chance to catch up with your posts. All the best for the rest of the trip & be careful out there!

Anonymous said...

Yes, the coal trucks are very dangerous around here. They fly around the small roads and if you are in the way, well, you just have to pray... Sorry about the coal hit...I live in Lexington KY. Wish I had found your blog earlier.

Steve H.