Hank – Looking ahead, we have severe weather showing up around noon tomorrow. Tomorrow is the day we ride to Nashville. Dickson was going to be our destination but that would give us 36 miles and a lot of elevation to cover before noon tomorrow. So we figured we’d go past Dickson and stop in White Bluff, shaving 10 miles off the ride.
We left the motel at 6:45 am. We had a town every 10-12 miles so we planned to stop at each one, cool off for a bit, and recharge our bodies. That worked out well for us. The temp quickly climbed to the high 80s and the humidity was already in the red zone. But Kathy and I soldiered on.
Between Waverly and Dickson I saw a sight I haven’t seen in a long time. A bike tourer was coming towards us. He was just as surprised to see us. His name was John and he hails from Washington, DC. He left home in April of last year, rode to Glacier National Park in Montana, and then rode the Great Divide Route down to Mexico. Then he rode to Washington State and then down to Nevada and Colorado. He’s currently headed to Vermont where he’ll store his bike and gear and do some hiking on the Appalachian Trail. The man is truly living life on the road. He needed to get to the Waverly post office to get a package before they closed so we didn’t get to visit very long.
We arrived in White Bluff at 2:00 pm with 47 miles on the books. We ate at Hog Heaven where we learned that way back before the monster climb to here there’s a state park with camp sites. That surprised me because the state park web site makes no mention of camping, only that the park is open from dawn to dusk. We did not want to repeat that climb so we elected to keep going.
We had noticed a large number of state trooper vehicles in the area. One of the locals in the restaurant said there’s a rally going on at the state park and he thinks it’s more of a Klan rally and people are expecting trouble. So maybe we shouldn’t be there anyway.
***Update: The Montgomery Bell State Park is a site of an annual white nationalist conference. We’re missing out on that as well as an organized protest against them. Lucky us.
We pressed on to Pegram, Tennessee and found a nice secluded spot next to the old railway station.
Tomorrow we have only 14 miles to cover to the car rental place. We have no worries of getting there before the thunderstorms arrive.
Kathy – We both slept well last night in the air conditioned disgusting hotel room. I only found two live bugs crawling in my bed (while I was awake 😳) and they quickly met their demise. I was more than happy to leave the hotel and move along today.
We rode 60 miles today in sunny HOT temps. With the humidity, the heat index was in the mid 90’s. Lots of fluid breaks today to keep us hydrated and to replenish electrolytes. We really didn’t eat a lot until we had lunch in White Bluff, Tennessee at our 47 mile mark. We had limited shoulders to ride on today but all the cars were super courteous and gave us nice space.
We rolled up and down all day. I started my Fitbit this morning just to see what our actual elevation was in comparison to what Google Maps for Cycling said….
Google Maps said our total elevation for today would be 1,550 feet of climbing.
My Fitbit watch that measured actual elevation throughout the day said our total elevation was 3,460 feet of climbing.
- Yep, we climbed a lot – 60 miles and 3,460 feet of climbing might make our muscles a little sore in the morning.
- Before we arrived in White Bluff, Tennessee today we kept seeing multiple state trooper cars coming and going in both directions. Once we arrived in White Bluff, it was incredible just home many state troopers were there. As we passed City Hall we saw 20 state troopers cars on the parking lot. This doesn’t count probably another 15 cars around town. We asked some of the locals at the restaurant if it is normal to have so many state troopers around town? “No, no, it’s just because of the Klan rally today in the park.” Hank replied to the 60-70 year old man, “Well, that’s not good.” The man replied, “Well, I guess it depends on if you’re for them or against them.” We couldn’t believe that Ku Klux Klan even exists any more, and that people are so easily manipulated. In this day and age with all the education that is out there, believing that the color of your skin makes you either superior on inferior is totally ridiculous. Happy for the strong police presence today. And, I was happy to leave that place.
- Today’s ride is done. Looking forward to finishing up the short 14 mile ride (with about 1,000 feet of climbing) into Nashville, Tennessee tomorrow. We will pick up a rental car tomorrow and have it for a few days to see the Nashville sights, then return it to the same location before hopping back on our bikes. 😊
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