One Third Down

Hank – Last night I couldn’t get to sleep to save my life. I don’t know why. I hadn’t had any caffeine since morning and I wasn’t in pain. Once asleep I woke up before the alarm went off. Consequently I was dragging all day.

The morning was foggy and the rain fly had condensation on both sides. It wasn’t going to dry out in time so we put it away as is. After getting all our panniers in order we drove about a mile down the road to turn the rental car in. We were on US  Highway 2. A right turn meant a very long ride back to Spokane. A left turn continued our adventure. We turned left.

My shoulder isn’t 100% but it wasn’t that painful either. On a 1-10 scale it wandered between 1 and 4, which is very tolerable. The five days we take to get to our friends house in Maine will help me decide. If the pain stays low then maybe 5-7 days of rest and rehab will allow me to go on.

We stayed on Highway 2 for most of the day. Leaving Vermont and entering New Hampshire, we ticked off states number 16 and 17. We are one third the way through them. We stopped in Lancaster, NH for what turned out to be disappointing barbecue. I guess they can’t all be winners.

From Lancaster we got on a quieter county road for about eight miles. At a rest break in the shade we met Dan Clark, a local who happens to be an avid cyclist. I’m sure Dan is older than me. He was just cleaning his chain when we stopped outside his place. He was impressed by our adventure and wished us the best. Dan told us his son just did a mountain bike race up Mt Washington. The average slope of the climb is 12%. The steepest is 27%. I can’t imagine.

Tonight’s accommodations are at the Fort Jefferson Campground. It’s not exactly as stellar as the web site makes it out to be but it suffices. Tomorrow we are at another campground and we’ll be in state #17. I got us a hotel room in Farmington ME for Sunday. The next few days will be 40-45 mile days.

Kathy – After three days of rest we are back on the bikes!  Today we rode 39 miles with 2,000 feet of climbing. It was an absolutely beautiful day, sunny with temps in the low 80’s.  We turned in the car rental and starting riding.  Hank seems to be doing a bit better, but his shoulder is not completely healed.  Hopefully he can hold out for approximately five days of riding until we get to our friends (Barb & Keith’s) house in Maine.  We last rode in Syracuse, New York.  We dropped the rental car off in St. Johnsbury, Vermont which knocked off a few miles of cycling for us.  Our goal is to take the most direct route to Barb & Keith’s house so Hank can rest his shoulder more.  Hopefully a little more downtime (than these last three days) will allow his shoulder to completely heal and allow us to continue our travels.

We traveled through two states today.  Vermont – state # 16 and New Hampshire – state # 17!  It’s much faster to travel through these ‘little’ states.  It’s crazy to think tomorrow we will be in Maine.  Our ride today through Vermont and New Hampshire were really beautiful.  I planted both my Vermont and New Hampshire flower seeds today as part of my Make America More Beautiful campaign – one packet of flower seeds per state visited.

Mountains are all around us and simply stunning.  We did do a lot of climbing, but I was surprised how well it went.  Maybe it was the rested up legs after three days of no riding, or possibly I am getting stronger.  Hmm, probably the rest days.  😊 With that said, the was challenging.  I was going slowly at times up the hills (other times even slower) but there was no walking.  There WAS a pounding heart rate, much huffing and puffing, and lots of sweat. But all in all, it worked out really well today.  Tomorrow we climb more.  I saw on the way into our campsite a nice big climb that I have coming for me first thing in the morning.  No doubt we got this…but just in case, send good vibes our way.  Thanks!

A couple of notes…

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  1. Glad the shoulder feels a bit better….I hope the rest at Keith and Barbs’ will help too! Safe travels!


  2. You are making great progress. Love following your adventures!


    1. Thank you, Kathy. By the way, yours is still one of our most favorite stories to share will people. Wish you the best and keeping going strong.


  3. Glad to here the shoulder is doing ok. Hope to see y’all soon. Safe travels pedal.


    1. Thanks Tony! Looking forward to visiting with you when we head down your way. 💗💗💗


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