After much gnashing of teeth over the last several days, I was fully intending to switch my bike tour plan to do a big loop up north. DC-Pittsburgh-Erie-Niagara Falls-Burlington (or Albany)-DC. I even bought maps for the Pittsburgh to Erie section.
And I checked the weather. Let’s just say it’s a tad brisker up yonder. And I noticed that the track of Irma is toward Saint Louis. I figured I’d have a better chance of meeting up with Irma’s remnants by riding to Erie than if I followed my original plan. And with hurricane Jose marking time near the Bahamas, it looks like I will get good weather for a least a week if I head south. So south it will be.
I spent the day packing and checking out my bike. My newly installed rear tire had a hop in it. I deflated it and re-seated it. Hopefully that will take care of things. There is a possibility that the rim is messed up. If so, I will literally hear about it when the tire blows off the rim.
Once I re-seated the tire, I loaded up the beast. It’s a lot of stuff. Tent. Sleeping pad. Sleeping sack (a thin sleeping bag), sleeping bag liner, clothes, rain gear. Tools and tubes and a spare tire. Food (granola bars out the wazoo), chargers and batteries and other electronic junk), toiletries and other assorting stuff. Somehow I neglected to find a proper paper journal for recording memorable events. I’ll pick one up tomorrow en route.
That’s right. I leave tomorrow as originally planned. I have no idea how far south I will get. Maybe in 3 weeks the east coast of Florida will be ridable. Maybe not. What’s a bike tour without a little adventure? The worst that could happen is I get to a point like Jacksonville or St. Augustine and have to turn around.
So today I test road the fully loaded Mule. It rides better with a load than without. Don’t ask me how this happens. Also, I installed lower gearing on the beast over a decade ago. I hope they are up to the challenge of the hills over the first four days.
As is usually the case, I have butterflies in my stomach. They seem to go away after a day.
My tour will be called the No Way So Hey Tour. This is because when my son was a toddler that’s how he said No Way Jose.