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Sunday 10 July 2011

Day 61 - Old River Road

Todays mileage: 50
Total mileage: 3,032
End point: Perry Lake, MS
(About 3 miles south of Beaumont, MS)

I left the campground around 9 am this morning on a mission to a bike shop. I was set against taking the death road of 49 south so ended up taking lots of back roads, which I estimated added about 3 miles to my trip. I arrived at Hattiesburg Bicycle Center and was greeted by Drew. He was a really good guy but unfortunately he couldn't help me. The heart of the problem is that I have disc brakes on a road sized wheel, and this is a fairly specialized piece of equipment. He was impressed the wheel was continuing to hold out, but I don't think it can go on till the end. Still tonight all my spokes still feel tight.

I continued into the centre of Hattiesburg through the University of Southern Mississippi's clean campus. In the centre of town I passed another amtrak station and pondered whether I could just take a sneaky train to mobile instead of riding; oh how nice that would be. I had discovered an alternative road to the main highway 98 which connects Hattiesburg to Mobile. The road was Old River Road and it was pretty quiet; a few old men selling watermelons was the pinnacle of the excitement.

Ahead of me another road closed sign; now we know I don't let these stop me. They were rebuilding all the bridges on this road but the middle one was mid-construction. Lots of the time in this situation the bridge is still intact but the road is being resurfaced, in this instance there actually wasn't a bridge. This was not going to be a problem however and I went down the banks of the river and wheeled it across. It was in fact just a small brook just a couple of feet wide with enough stepping stones for me to avoid getting wet feet. On the otherside I was home free and could cycle with no traffic which was great with just a lonesome turtle for company; at least he wouldn't be getting squashed today.

I stopped in Beaumont to resupply for camping, and have a new favourite store: 'Tiger Food'. No messing around with these names although I am suprised kellogs haven't taken out some sort of litigation against them. To the south of Beaumont is a state lake which is pretty well hidden as it isn't on google maps. I haven't been using hikercentral and rvparkreviews to help me find some of these locations. The lake is great but the park warden was telling me it was alligator infested so there won't be any swimming. Joey told me they had hauled a 10 foot gator out a few weeks back but were still hunting a 14 foot one which had been attacking boats! He also sorted me out with some ice, and there are showers here which is nice. The only other people camping here are the West family who are currently out on the pier fishing. They fed me some fries and fish early which was good, shout out to you guys.

Tomorrow I hope to make it to Mobile in Alabama with a really early start, this combined with it being a Sunday should mean I have the roads to myself. I'm going to have the bike checked out here on monday but I really wanted to take my rest day on the beach in Pensecola along the coast a bit - we'll see how it pans out.

1 comment:

  1. Google Latitude is genius! Stop slacking in Lucedale and get some miles in :)