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TRIP 2018

Update #13 - May 19th
Pocomoke City, Maryland

Year Total : 2,099.07 miles (3,358.31 km)



May 07 - M : North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to Shallotte, North Carolina : 30.18 miles (48.29 km)
33.60 C 15.40 R
Trip Total : 1,641.93 miles (2,627.09 km)

Fourty-nineth day on tour.

Last night was a little better than the night before. I got my sleep mask. I went to bed before Mark and DJ got back from the emergency room. Mark needed to get some antibiotics because there was a slight infection below his surgical area. I woke up around 5:30 a.m.

DJ came back from the gym around 7:20 am. I had her help me get Allison out of the condo. She told me that they didn't get from the hospital till almost 11:30 pm. I backtracked to Nixons Crossroads. From there it, was a short ride to US 17 and I carefully got across the Intercoastal Bridge. The 4.8 miles to where I could get off on SC 170 was really tricky because there was little or no shoulder. I pulled off the highway several times. In Little River, I took advantage of every stretch of sidewalk available. Also, I stopped at a McDs for some breakfast.

I was really happy to get on SC 170. 9.28 miles from Mark's condo, I crossed into North Carolina. The ride in North carolina was a lot better. By noon, I had ridden about 22 miles. I got into Shallotte around 1 pm. I stopped at a BK for some lunch before I rode over to the hotel where I had a reservation

May 08 - T : Shallotte, North Carolina to Wilmington, North Carolina : 56.48 miles (90.37 km)
34.60 C 15.40 R
Trip Total : 1,698.41 miles (2,717.46 km)

Fiftieth day on tour.

Last night was a better than the night before. The room was a little cool. I tried the heater element but it wasn't working very well. I woke up several times to go to the restroom. I woke up around 5:30 am. There was a pretty good selection of hot foods for breakfast.

I left the hotel around 7:40 am. I backtracked into Shallotte and finished up the last of Bus 17. The five miles between where I got back on US 17 and the NC 211 turnoff in Supply was really hard. There was little or no shoulder to ride along because of a large rumble strip. Areas where there was no shoulder was because the grass and weeds had grown over the open space of pavement. I carefully made my way riding my mirror. There were a couple of places where I got off Allison and pushed her.

While I was struggling, I caught a really strange sight. There was this guy on a racing bike and he was drafting behind an RV. The cyclist was going really fast and was almost hugging the rear bumper of the RV. Very close to the cyclist, was a chase vehicle that had lights flashing. They must have been cruising around 30 mph. There was some kind of sign on the back of the RV but I didn't catch it.

I was really happy to turn south on NC 211 because there was finally a shoulder and some kind of bike lane. It was kind of cool in the 50s so I had to stop at a gas station to get some hot chocolate and to also get out my jacket. By noon, I was at the Northern outskirts of Southport. I had ridden around 26 miles. I stopped at a McDs for some lunch.

From the McDs it was a couple of mile ride into Southport and another two miles to the ferry landing. I got to the ferry landing around 1:40 pm. The fare was $2. There were a lot of day trippers on bikes. There was at least a dozen old men and a couple of old ladies. The ferry left around 1:45 pm. I spent most of the time taking pictures and several short videos.

After getting off the ferry, I got a little lost following a bike path that was supposedly going around the NC Aquarium but it took me into the parking lot. Once I got back on US 421, the ride through Kure Beach and Carolina Beach went okay. There was a designated bike lane. I walked across the intercoastal waterway bridge stopping to take some pictures. I'll not see any real water again until I get up to Currituck and the ferry there.

Once I got off the bridge, the ride was terrible. There was no shoulder to ride along. The 2.3 miles to Myrtle Grove Road was really tricky. The traffic along Myrtle Grove Road was a lot less and not as fast. I finished up Myrtle Grove Road and then got on Masonboro Loop Road. Masonboro Loop became Pine Grove Drive. At the end of Pine Grove, it was about a 4 mile tricky ride to Market Street (Bus 17) where the hotel was where I had a reservation.

I've got about a 50 mile ride to Jacksonville tomorrow. Once I get out of Wilmington tomorrow, the trickiest part of tomorrow's ride will to get through the Holly Ridge area since there is no road shoulder though the town.

May 09 - W : Wilmington, North Carolina to Hawkside (N Jacksonville), North Carolina : 55.64 miles (89.02 km)
35.60 C 15.40 R
Trip Total : 1,754.05 miles (2,806.48 km)

Fifty-first day on tour.

Last night wasn't a good one. The first room that I was given reeked of smoke. It was supposed to be a non-smoking room. There were a lot of cigarette butts in the parking lot in front of the room. I went back to the office and got a room on the other side of the building. This room smelled okay. I was hoping to watch television but the television didn't work. I didn't feel like going back to the office to get another room. I went to bed around 10 pm. I woke up several times to go to the restroom.

I woke up around 5:30 am. Instead of a free breakfast, there was a restaurant where I could have gotten 10% off.

I left the hotel around 7:40 am. The seven mile ride along Bus 17 to where it joined back with US 17 was a little tricky because there was little or no shoulder and mostly curbing. Once I got back the interchange, a good shoulder started up till the western edge of Hampstead. The three mile ride through Hampstead was a little tricky because of the curbing. By noon, I had ridden about 20 miles. I stopped at a gas station where there was a Subway and got some lunch. The curbing started up again in the Holly Ridge area.

The ride through the Camp Lejeune area went really fast. There was a tailwind to push me along and I coasted a lot. I got into Jacksonville around 6 pm. On the way to the hotel where I had a reservation, I stopped at a McDs for a take-out.

May 10 - R : Hawkside (N Jacksonville), North Carolina to Trent Woods (New Bern), North Carolina : 36.48 miles (56.37 km)
36.51 C 15.49 R
Trip Total : 1,790.53 miles (2,864.54 km)

Fifty-second day on tour.

Last night was a little better than the night before but I was a little worried about breathing in some mold. There must have been a leak with the air conditioning unit in the room above me. There was a lot of mold and mildew on the bottom strip of the privacy curtains. The cloth covering of the curtain rods was discolored with a large section that could have been more mold.

I woke up around 6:30 am. There was a pretty good selection of hot foods for breakfast and there was also yogurt. I left the hotel around 7:50 am.

The ride North went okay. The highway was a divided four lane highway till a couple of miles south of Marysville. There was some road construction because they were building some new lanes to go around the town. By noon, I had ridden about 23 miles. The rest of the ride into the New Bern area went okay. Before going to the hotel where I had a reservation, I stopped at a Bojangles for some lunch.

May 11 - F : Trent Woods (New Bern), North Carolina to Williamston, North Carolina : 72.56 miles (116.10 km)
37.51 C 15.49 R
Trip Total : 1,863.09 miles (2,980.94 km)

Fifty-third day on tour.

Last night was a pretty good. The room was really nice. I woke up around 5:30 am. There wasn't any breakfast, so I used the toaster to make some toast with peanut butter and ate a couple of oranges.

I left the hotel around 7:20 am. I rode to the downtown area so I could take a few pictures of the painted bears. I rode across the drawbridge. I made it across the drawbridge right before it opened up. I walked up the incline on to the bridge over the Neuse River.

The morning ride went really well. By noon, I had ridden almost 26 miles. I stopped at a gas station in Vanceboro for some lunch. The afternoon ride went okay. Coming into Chocowinity, I found a safety flag with a long pole on the side of the road. I broke the pole in half and taped up the break in the fiberglass. I've now got a side safety flag.

The safety flag really helped because US 17 became a two-lane road north of Washington. There was a long stretch where the shoulder was blocked by a rumble strip and there was a rough section near the white line. Motorists actually slowed down and waited before they could pass me safely.

Coming into williamston, I had to use Google Maps to find the hotel where I had a reservation.

May 12 - SA : Williamston, North Carolina to Edenton, North Carolina : 45.23 miles (72.37 km)
38.51 C 15.49 R
Trip Total : 1,908.32 miles (3,053.31 km)

Fifty-fourth day on tour.

Last night was a pretty good. The room was really nice. I woke up around 6.50 am. There was a pretty good breakfast.

I left the hotel around 7:50 am. I rode through the downtown area. About a half mile from where I was going to get on US 17, I stopped to help a small box turtle to get across the road. I took some pictures. Between Williamston and Windsor, US 17 was pretty developed. It was going to become new Interstate 87. I got through Windsor before noon. By noon, I had ridden 22 miles by noon. US 17 between Windsor and the Chowan River, US 17 was better.

I stopped to watch this large turtle dig a hole in some dirt and stones up by a road. It got scared so it turned around and started walking back into the woods. I got my cell phone out and took a short video of it.

Near Merry Hill, I stopped at a Dollar General to get some things and for getting more fluids. While I was packing up the food, this little black boy came up to me with a dollar in his hand. I thanked him and gave him one of my business cards. I drank a large bottle of Powerade. The temperature was in the upper 90s.

When I got to the Chowan River bridge, I walked up to the high spot because there was a lot of garbage in the shoulder. In Edenton, I stopped at a dairy bar to get a small milkshake. To make sure I had a place to stay, I booked a room at a motel north of US 17 through my cell phone.

At the motel where I had a reservation, there were two trike recumbents locked up at the motel entrance. The trikes had emotors and also had suspension.

May 13 - SU : Edenton, North Carolina to Edenton, North Carolina : 01.74 miles (02.78 km)
38.55 C 16.45 R
Trip Total : 1,910.06 miles (3,056.10 km)

Fifty-fifth day on tour.

I had an okay night. I left the hotel around 8:45 am. The people with the trike recumbents had left. I was told that they were cycling to Suffolk, VA today.

I decided to stop at the First United Methodist Church instead of backtracking to the First Baptist Church. I got to the church around 9:15 am. There was a contemporary service going on in the gymnasium but I didn't go in. I wandered around the halls and found a sofa to wait. I was invited to attend a sunday school class. I was the youngest person in the class. I was asked to share. The class was okay.

I got to briefly talk with the pastor before the service. He wasn't that helpful when I asked him if he knew of a place where I could take the rest of the day off. It was too late to try and ride down to the First Baptist church. There was this puppet show for the kids but it was long because in the middle of the skit the music stopped so they started over again. Afterwards, the kids gave some packets of flower seeds to the mothers in the congregation. There was also a time to share praises and prayers so I shared again.

After the service, I found some money slipped underneath the top of my seat bag. I rode across the highway to the BK to get some lunch. From the BK, I backtracked to the hotel and got a room for the day.

May 14 - M : Edenton, North Carolina to Elizabeth City, North Carolina : 31.67 miles (50.67 km)
39.34 C 16.66 R
Trip Total : 1,941.73 miles (3,106.77 km)

Fifty-sixth day on tour.

I had an okay afternoon and night. It would have been really good but for some reason the wifi network of the motel was down. I could barely connect my cellphone. I used my cellphone to make a hotspot so I could get on the web. I spent most of the afternoon taking a long nap.

I went to bed before 10 pm. I did wake up a couple of times to go to the restroom. I woke up a little before 6 am. I got cleaned up, dressed, and went to the office to get some breakfast.

To avoid the heat in the afternoon, I got on the road around 7:30 am. The temperature was in the upper seventies. Instead of directly getting on US 17, I got on Bus 17. The ride to the Peroquamins County Line was okay but there was a narrow shoulder to deal with because of a rumble strip. Once I crossed into Peroquamins County, the rumble strip disappeared. By 10:40 am, I got the first twenty miles in.

The rest of the ride into Elizabeth City went okay. By noon, I had ridden 30.18 miles. Before going to the motel where I had a reservation, I stopped at a Hardees for some lunch. The temperature was in the low eighties.

I've pretty well finished up US 17. I'm 23.2 miles away from the Currituck to Knotts Island Ferry and 32.5 miles from the VA State Line. I've arranged for a room at a hotel at the Southern edge of Atlantic Avenue in Virginia Beach tomorrow.

May 15 - T : Elizabeth City, North Carolina to Virginia Beach, Virginia : 60.47 miles (96.75 km)
40.34 C 16.66 R
Trip Total : 2,002.20 miles (3,203.52 km)

Fifty-seventh day on tour.

I had an night. The room was okay except there was some housekeeping issues. On the top of the headboards of the beds, there were cobwebs. There was also a long cobweb reaching from the wall light next to the bed to the ceiling. In the bathroom, there was a really large spot of mildew on the ceiling near the shower head. It looked like there was a leak below the tub in the room above mine. I woke up a couple of times during the night. I woke up around 5:30 am. There wasn't much for breakfast (juice and pastries).

I got on the road around 7:20 am. The temperature was already in the 70s. I rode sidewalk most of the way into downtown Elizabeth City where I got on US 158. There was a bike lane across the drawbridge. The bike path shoulder lasted till Camden. Beyond Camden, the shoulder disappeared. I rode the white line. The ride to Barco and US 168 was really tricky because the highway was just a two-lane road with lots of traffic. It was especially hard when I had to ride through two very long sections of swamp. I rode my mirror. Most of the vehicles behind me were courteous but there were quite a few times when I had to quickly get off the road onto the grass. A shoulder started up about a half mile from US 168. Once, I got on US 168, there was a shoulder to ride along. There was also a brisk tailwind to push me along.

I got into Currituck around 11:40 am. Before going to the ferry dock (terminal), I stopped at a gas station with a McDs to get a takeout meal. I got to the ferry dock around 11:55 am. I had ridden 26.62 miles from Elizabeth City. The ferry was supposed to arrive from Knotts Island around 12:50 am and leave to Knotts Island at 1 pm. I took a short video of the ferry coming back. I was allowed to get on the ferry before the other vehicles were able to get on. There were three cars and a school bus that had five kids on. The kids were in a special program that was college orientated. They have two more days left in their school year while the regular school has one week left in the school year.

The ferry landed around 1:50 pm. I was the last person off the ferry. The nine mile ride to the VA state line was really hard because the pavement was really washboardy and there were a lot of tar lines covering cracks in the pavement. Along the way, I did stop at the super market/ gas station for a short break. The temperature was in the upper 80s. The wind kind of pushed me around especially when I got on the causeway through the marsh.

I crossed into Virginia around 3:40 pm. I stopped to take a picture of the Welcome to Virginia Beach sign because there was no state sign. Marsh Causeway turned into Princess Anne Road. Princess Anne was pretty rough in some sections while in other sections the roadway was much improved since it had been repaved. I stopped in Creeds and Pungo for short breaks. There were a lot of strawberry fields where you could pick-your-own. I stopped to take pictures of a stand and strawberry field close to the road.

Along the way, most of the traffic behind me was courteous. There were a few guys with dumptrucks from the sandpit below the state line who didn't give me much clearance. Traffic was more courteous when I got on VA 615 (General Booth). I stopped at a Hardees in Barn Neck Corner for a take out meal of chicken tenders. I rode passed the US Naval Amphibious Base. There were a lot of jets in the air from the nearby Oceana Naval Air Station. I was able to ride across the Inlet Canal Bridge without getting off Allison.

At the southern edge of Atlantic Avenue, I stopped at the Howard Johnson Motel that was on the west side (non-ocean side 0f Atlantic Ocean). My room was supposed to be on the 4th floor but I couldn't get Allison into the small elevator. I got a double bed room on the first floor.

May 16 - W : Virginia Beach, Virginia to Lynnhaven Shores (Virginia Beach), Virginia : 11.89 miles (19.02 km)
40.64 C 17.36 R
Trip Total : 2,014.09 miles (3,222.54 km)

Fifty-eighth day on tour.

I had a somewhat of an off night. There was a lot of jet noise till around 10 pm from the nearby Oceana Naval Air Base. The room was a concrete box. I had to go to the office to get a new remote because the one in the room didn't work. I was able to adjust the volume by pointing at the television but to change the channel I had to get out of bed and point the remote to a cable box that was fastened to the outlet near the floor.

I wasn't able to get on the internet through the hotel's wifi network. You had to type in a password to get onto the protected network but there was also a login page. Something was wrong with that page. It didn't always connect. The page didn't always show and I couldn't find the url. At least, I was able to get on the web using my cellphone as a hotspot.

I went to bed around 10:30 pm. I got awoken around 12:40 am by some loud people outside. I did get up a couple of time during the night to go to the restroom.

I woke up around 5 am. There wasn't much for breakfast (cereal, pastries, juice, and milk). I left the hotel around 7:40 am. I backtracked about a block and got on the Mariner Bike Trail along the boardwalk. I stopped along the way to take a lot of pictures. The beach and the bike trail was pretty empty because people were still having breakfast. At least, nobody was on the bike path with pedal cards. The beach bike path ended at 40th Street.

I got on the bike path next to Atlantic Avenue. I followed the bike path to where Shore Drive started. There was a bike path separated from the road lanes by a rumble strip. I rode passed the Fort Story Military Reservation and the Seashore State Park.

In Lynnhaven Shores, I stopped at a Food Lion to get some groceries. From the Food Lion, I stopped at a McDs for some lunch. From the McDs, it was a short ride to the hotel where I had a reservation. The room that I was assigned wasn't ready. I was hoping that I could get a room early because with being a Platinum member of the rewards program, there was a early check-in option. I had to pay $10 more to get a double bed room on the first floor.

After taking a shower and changing clothes, I took my dirty clothes to a coin laundry that was in a shopping center across the road. After getting the clothes in the washer, I backtracked to the Food LIon to see if I had left the safety flag there by accident. I was happy to find the safety flag. The wash was done and it took a short time to get the clothes dried. I got to the hotel right before it started to rain.

I'm four miles from the southern terminus of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel.

May 17 - R : Lynnhaven Shores (Virginia Beach), Virginia to Onley, Virginia : 51.74 miles (82.78 km)
41.64 C 17.36 R
Trip Total : 2,065.83 miles (3,305.33 km)

Fifty-nineth day on tour.

I had a somewhat of an off night. There was a lot of noise during the night. There were a couple of guys talking really loud outside. I went to bed around 10:30 pm, but I got awoken a little before midnight by two really loud motorcycles coming into the motel parking lot. I woke up around 5 am. I wasn't able to fall asleep. I checked out some Youtube videos of British Got Talent.

I checked out around 7:35 am. I went to the office to check out. There wasn't much for breakfast. Orange juice and some pastries. The bridge between Lynnhaven Shores and Ocean Park was still under construction. The westbound side of the new Lesner bridge was finished and there were four lanes going where just two lanes should be. There was a really narrow walkway. I was barely able to walk Allison without touching the barriers. I had to stop a couple of times to let two other bicyclists get across. One of the cyclist was a girl who was on a bike with really large 6 inch wide tires.

Once across the bridge, I rode sidewalk until I got to Baylake Pines. I went across the highway and got on a bike path through Bayville Farms Park. The bike path ended about a block away from US 13 and the southern end of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. From where I got on US 13, it was a little over a mile to the toll booths for the bridge. I went in to the office to arrange for a ride across the bridge. I had about a fifteen minute wait before a safety truck was available. The ride across was $13. The bridge was in the process of road construction. Preparations were being made for a new tunnel to be built. It is going to take about 5 years to get the first of two tunnels done. The guy who toook me across told me that I was the second cyclist that he took across. The first one was two days ago.

It was about 10:15 am when I got dropped off in the welcome center parking lot. I had Allison packed up by 10:30 am. I headed out after taking picture of the road sign to the Cape May Ferry 140 miles away. From the welcome center, it was a short ride to the rails and trails bike path. I rode the bike path for a couple of miles before I got on the shoulder of US 13.

Around noon, I stopped at a McDs outside of Cape Charles for lunch. To make sure I had a place to stay I used my cell phone to get on the web to make a reservation at a motel in Onley. Between Eastville and Nassawadox, I got caught in a light rain shower. I was making some good time but my rear tire went soft. I got off the road to check it out. I found a really long piece of wire sticking out of the tire. I put in a new inner tube. It took about 20 minutes for the whole repair to get done. When I got to Exmore, I was able to take my jacket off.

The good shoulder lasted till Painter. Between Painter and Keller, the shoulder disappeared. Every time there was a lot of traffic behind me, I pulled off the road to wait for the traffic to go passed. The shoulder reappeared in Keller but it disappeared again when I got to Melfa. Between Melfa and Onley, I got on the paved median and rode it until a paved shoulder appeared next to the southbound lanes. I rode the shoulder into Onley. Before going to the motel where I had the reservation, I stopped at the Walmart to buy some new tubes for the back and front wheels.

The goal for tomorrow is Pocomoke City, Maryland 28 miles away. They are calling for possible thunderstorms in the afternoon.

May 18 - F : Onley, Virginia to Pocomoke City, Maryland : 33.24 miles (53.18 km)
42.47 C 17.53
Trip Total : 2,099.07 miles (3,358.31 km)

Sixtieth day on tour.

Last night was a bit better than the night before. The room was okay. The motel used to be the Comfort Inn. I was so happy that the heater worked and I was able to get all of my wet clothes dried. I slept through the night. I woke up around 5:30 am. There was an okay breakfast. It did rain during the night.

I was looking at heading out around 7:40 am but it was lightly raining. I got out my shower cap to cover the helmet. I rode down the road a couple of blocks and stopped at a Royal Farm for some chocolate milk. It was interesting that there was a device that made a moo when you opened the glass door.

Instead of getting back on US 13, I decided to ride into town to see if there was anybody at the Onley Baptist Church. The pastor wasn't in the office. There was some activity in the foyer of the church but I didn't stop. I followed Bus 13 to Accomack before getting on US 13. The shoulder was okay. There were a couple of places where the shoulder shrunk when I got into a town but there was never a place where I had no shoulder. I did have to deal with standing water at the road's edge.

I was really upset to hear that there was another shooting at a high school. This time it was at a high school near Houston. At least 1 person was shot when the first report came out. Since Parkland, Florida, there have been five more shootings at schools.

Around 10 am the rain stopped but it was still cool in the low 60s that I kept my coat on. By noon, I had ridden around 22 miles. Before I crossed into Maryland, I stopped at a Royal Farm for a late lunch. From the gas station, it was just a couple of hundred feet to the Maryland state line. I was able to stop and take a picture of the state sign. I stopped at the Maryland Welcome Center to go to the restroom and get a couple of brochures.

From the welcome center, it was about a 4 mile ride to the motel where I had a reservation. It was a wet ride because the rain started up again.

From the Maine State Line: 636.57 miles (1,018.51 km).



The next update might be posted between May 26th and June 02nd.




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