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Day 32 (Wed 7/29/09)

Kentucky, the unbridled spirit state

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ROUTE: Carbondale, IL to Marion KY DISTANCE:  96 miles TOTAL CLIMBING:  7353 ft

Click here for Garmin daily ride data 

Click here for Summary Data sheet   

(This is cool if you like lots of data! It may take a few seconds to load but you can hit play and time compress our ride. )

DAILY REPORT:  The weatherman was predicting 50% thunderstorms all day. Temp was 65 and expected to be in the mid 80's. A southwesterly wind and high humidity.

So let's see how far I get on today's journal. I'm a little tired and the the hotel's WIFI is proving to be problematic.....It is hard to believe that we have been gone now for a month. Wow, time share has flown by and we are eating up the miles with only a little over 1,000 miles to go!!

To begin, we had a nice continental breakfast at the Super 8 Motel. They had a waffle maker which is always a treat -- not as good as home but not bad :) We had to prep the bikes for wet weather so on went the fenders and we packed up the rain gear. As with most teenagers, James couldn't remember/find his rain jacket and the mysterious loss was directly related to his brother. Hmmmm..... Eventually we hit the road. The weather was the coolest in the last week but still really muggy.

The route today took us along a number of lakes and hills. In fact lots of hills. If you look at the summary data sheet we climbed over 7,000 feet today. That's a fair amount of climbing considering that there are no mtns here. All in all, the boys rode really well. We had one close call when a dog ran out in front of us and nearly caused a three cycle pile-up. 

Some of the more interesting things, at least for me; I finally spotted a flock of turkeys. I had been looking for some since Missouri. There were about a dozen to a dozen and a half; out in a field following a tractor path. I wasn't able to get a good picture but they were neat to watch. Later on in the morning we came across a rat snake sunning himself on the road. A quick dismount of the bike and he was caught. He was a little feisty trying to bite me on more than one occasion. Took a few pictures and put him back in the woods to make sure a passing car didn't get him.

Skip did meet us for lunch in Eddiesville. By then the skies had cleared and it looked like we had missed the rain :) We had another 45 miles of riding to Marion KY. We biked along the Ohio River and even took a ferry across the river to get to Kentucky. This our ninth state. One more to go!!

As we were biking into Marion, the final stop of the day; the three of us were sprinting up the last hill of the day. I believe the police officer who was looking for speeders as we rounded the corner into town must have gotten a chuckle to see these three hot and sweaty bikers mashing gears. James was victorious and was awarded the yellow jersey for the day!!

Our hotel was about 15 miles south in the next town, so we loaded up the bikes and headed for Kuttawa, KY. The manger Nick of Relax Inn had given us one free room which was much appreciated. We took showers, did some bike maintenance, and then headed out for a Chinese dinner.

Skip's back had been bothering him today. While taking a picture earlier in the day he "tweaked" his back so he was glad to get to the hotel and get e chance to lay down and stretch out his back. Hope he is feeling better tomorrow.

As I write this it is raining outside and the prediction is rain all day tomorrow. We will be heading for Whitesville. 

I also wanted to thank everyone who has donated to our two charities - Boys and Girls Club and the Wounded Warrior Project. We are getting real close to reaching our goal of $10,000. I have updated the donation page with our business and individual sponsors. (If I missed anyone please let me know.) Thanks again!!

Also as a reminder, Jason Parker, president of Parker Financial LLC is hosting a client appreciation wine tasting and charity event on Thurs., July 30 from 6 - 8 p.m. at Monica’s Waterfront Bakery in Old Town Silverdale. He will be collecting donations for the Riding4Hope Team. Thank you!!

Thanks for joining us.....ride safely and keep the wind to your back!! 

The Riding4Hope Team


(David, John, James & Skip)

Signing out 7/30/09; 0130




Skip - during a phone call we received in the morning. "David, I think I'm lost!" David replies "How can that be, you have the GPS?!" Skip continues "There are two Eddyville's, two Marion's; I think the GPS is out to get me!!"

John - during lunch "And I thought that dog was going to be friendly!" during our discussion of being chased by a big black dog.

James - "You know, I would know where all my clothes were if it wasn't for John." Sure....

David - "Good thing I was wearing sunglass today; I could have lost an eye with get hit by all these bugs!" James adds, "And I had one fly in my mouth. Yuk! I need to keep my mouth closed while going up these hills!"



So I thought I would include a few trials and tribulations for Maria my wife who was left behind while all of us men folk are out having fun and taking it easy on this cross country bike trip. This reminds me of days of old when I would leave on a submarine deployment and that is when everything would break and/or fall apart --


1. The microwave has "blown up."

2. The black jeep will not start.

3. A black bear walks through our backyard. I wonder if I will have any bee hives left when I return.

4. Mice are found living in the kids bathroom down stairs.

5. The red jeep will not start.

6. Numerous science experiments were found in the kids bedroom while cleaning.

7. The worst heat wave ever and you're not here to experience it!




John, making sure his bike is all ready for the day's ride.

This was one cool bull! (The one on the left that is!!)

Hey, we will stop to take a picture of anything. Note the sign name - Raleigh.

In a matter of seconds the kids can be a sleep. I believe they inherited that from Granny Carole!!

The ferry was a little smaller than what we were used to seeing in Seattle!! It took about 10 min to get across the Ohio River. The whole operation consisted basically of a tug and a barge! Not sure who conducted the safety study on this but it works.

James winning the final stage race into Marion. The victor!!

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