Sunday, May 31, 2015

Day 70 La Porte, Indiana to Hamilton Indiana

108 miles. Big day. Lots of rain in the forecast.  Looks like country roads ahead and I'm hoping they are paved.

We are up at 6 am for breakfast and shooting for a 7 am departure. It's 7:28 and we're rolling. The rain has stopped but the roads are wet and there is but a slight drizzle in the air. Feeling lucky and hope it holds.

It's Saturday and there's a big speed boat race today. Lots of people partying the night before so as Diana and I snake through La Porte, we are wary of possible DUI drivers. It all looks good. The few cars we encounter give us plenty of room.

Soon we are on country roads.We see evidence of the strong winds from last night..

 It must be the seasonal changes in temperature at it seems like the roads are in poor shape. Lots of expansion cracks. It makes the going slow.

 But we're not complaining, yet.

 It's nice to be traffic free. The wind is also a bit helpful and cruising at 16 mph feels good.

The scenery is nice. Everything is so green. Diana and I talk a lot but we also have long intervals of silence where we're just lost in our own thoughts. This trip has taken turns we never expected and it's a lot to take in.

I can't help but remember the day before we left, smiling for pictures, all excited about the upcoming journey. At the time I remember thinking that at the end of this trip we would look back and realize how little did we know. That sure has proven true.

The bumpy paved roads now turn to dirt and gravel.

Some of the gravel is so deep it's hard to keep the bikes upright.

Mother Goose (our SAG wagon) has now passed us in search for lunch. Diana and I ride on. Lunch is somewhere around mile 58, I think. I tell myself I really should make a mental note of these things.  Now we are riding on a real bike path. Right through a cemetery. I'm uncomfortable. Diana though finds it calming. We ride on through.

We're now at mile 60 and I'm pretty sure we blew past the lunch spot somehow. I see a missed call from Dennis so we stop and call him back. He tells me that nothing was open at the lunch spot (mile 52!) so he has been standing in front of a Deli further down the road waiting for us. I remember seeing that deli about 5 miles ago! Yikes.We're ahead of them. So we agree to keep moving forward as Dennis picks up lunch and chases us down.

We're now at mile 70  and Diana is starting to bonk. She needs some real food. We call Dennis and he's just now leaving the deli. So we keep going albeit at a slower pace and stop a few times in the shade to rest.

We see many Amish buggies and children playing together outside. It's nice.

Diana had hoped to see some of these and we were rewarded many times over.

We stop in the shade to cool off a bit...

 Check out our friendly visitor...He's a real beauty.
It seems like all the dogs we've seen today have been friendly. I imagine Tigger is protecting us.

I stop a bit further down to admire a young foal running around a field. Too far for the GoPro to capture, but I do get a visit from some of horses. I pet one and am rewarded with soulful look. I know nothing of horses but sure do like them.

We finally see Mother Goose coming up on us. Mile 77 I believe.

The deli sandwiches were well worth the wait. We eat well.

Soon we are visited by an Amish farmer. He offers us water but we tell him we have plenty. So he goes back and brings us back a beautiful Kohlrabi.

He tells us to peel it like an apple and slice it like an onion and eat it raw. "Even better if you add salt" he says with a mischievous smile, "but don't add salt if you have high blood pressure!". I reach in the truck and pull out some pecans that my friend Bruce Caris gave to us for the ride. He tells me I've given him too much and that he should bring me 3 more kohlrabis. I tell him we have plenty and that he could certainly share with his neighbors if it's too much. He's very appreciative. We all shake hands multiple times and we're back on our way.

Diana continued on for another 10 miles or so and is ready to call it a day. Bumpy dirt roads, rain and now a humid heat have taken their toll. She rode strong and we are all proud of her. I take off solo. 

Soon it's only about 10 miles to go and I come across a 'road closed' sign. I check it out. They are working on a bridge. Is it safe to cross?  I see some heavy equipment on it, no activity,  and no evidence of fresh cement. So I take my chance and carry my bike over with. Mother Goose has to turn around and take a detour. It turns out to be a long one as I'm pretty close to the hotel when they wiz on by. 

I pull in close to 5pm. 108 miles down.

 Lost an hour with the time change. I'm drenched and tired. I think I rode too hard and am concerned I'll pay the price tomorrow. 

The hotel is billed as a resort. It was probably quite the resort 40 years ago but time has taken its toll
Still the views are excellent, the price was right, and the food not bad.

We sleep well, listening to the rain.


  1. Looks like a good day. Proud of you guys!

  2. Yay! Friendly dogs, tailwind, generous Amish, great deli sandwiches ... and best of all: the perfect riding partner! I'm with Diana, riding through the cemetery is peaceful! The cemetery where my Mom is buried is on the route of one of our fav rides and we often drop by to 'say hi'; I find it quite lovely to cycle there 😊.

  3. I felt a strange sense of peace in the misty rain, riding through ,the decorated markers for people passed long ago,

  4. Thank you, Dawna for your shared thoughts.

  5. A tiring but special day for you both, methinks...