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TRIP 2003

Update #32 - August 06th
Niantic, Illinois - 6587 miles (10,539 KM)



The temperature has been a bit more comfortable since it has only been in the eighties. I'm really happy for that. The only thing bad that I've had to deal with has been some bad roads (broken pavement and bad shoulders).

The ride across Missouri went okay. I didn't stay long on the KATY trail. This might be the longest Rails-to-Trails ride in the country and is almost across the state but it wasn't a good experience for me. The path surface was either crushed limestone or packed dirt. It was so loose in places that my bike slipped from one side to another. In one space of nine miles, it took almost four hours of travel. I did have several minor spills. Nothing was hurt except for my pride. I was only on it between Sedalia and Columbia (70 miles) but it was enough for me. Let me have a good paved path any day.

Finding a bridge that I could use to cross over the Mississippi River was tricky for me also. I was going to try and cross the Mississippi River at Louisiana, Missouri at U.S. 54 but the bridge was too narrow to allow non-vehicular traffic. The nearest bike-friendly bridges were about sixty miles south of me at St. Charles, Missouri (just north of St. Louis) and 50 miles north of me at Hannibal, Missouri. I chose to ride over the bridge at Hannibal, Missouri.

I've had some luck at churches. I was able to speak for a few minutes at the First Christian Church in New London, MO. Over all, churches have been friendly to me. The last couple of nights were spent in churches (the Church of Chr-st in Meredosia, Illinois and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in New Berlin, Illinois). Tonight, I'm spending the night with the Methodist minister in Niantic, Illinois who is a friend of mine.

I'll be riding through Decatur, Champaign, Urbanna, and Danville, Illinois. After Danville, I'll be traveling sort of NE to Fort Wayne, IN. From Fort Wayne, I'll be traveling to the Cincinatti, Ohio - Covington, Kentucky area. I'll try to post an update as often as I can if there are any changes in my plans.




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