Thursday, September 30, 2010

Crossing The Mississippi River

I started today on LA 190 again, instead of using the Adventure Cycling Maps. LA 190 is a more direct route and I eliminated two river ferry crossings.  Once again I was on wide shoulders, flat terrain, blue skys and cool temps.  The hummity has been unseasonably low.

I took the bridge over the Atchafalaya River, then crossed the spillway on a 3 1/2 mile flat bridge about 25-30 feet above the ground with no shoulder and a concret guard rail.  The causeway was 4 lane, light traffic and Vicki followed with flashers on.

There was miles of sugar cane fields on either side of the road.

Crossing the Mississippi River at Port Allen presented another challange, but traffic was lite on the bridge and I rode safetly into Baton Rouge (captiol of Louisiana) around 11:00 AM.

For the remainder of the route through the city, traffic was not as bad as rush hour, but still heavy.

 We had lived in Baton Rouge for five years, and have many good friends here, who wanted us to visit, unfortunately we had to pass on the invites.  When cycling I have to keep going and even my route can change due to traffic.
                                                                                       GEAUX TIGERS!!!

After Denham Springs, Hwy 190 became two lanes with a very narrow shoulder.  For safety we dropped down at Walker to I-12 and after a few miles on the Interstate I was "pulled over" by a very friendly policeman. I was informed that I could not ride on the Interstate, so with lights flashing he escorted me to the next exit. 

We then turned south for a short distance to eastbound LA22 - this turned out to be a blessing for a lovely ride through the Scenic Byway.

We (Vicki) saw this sign and was wondering if it was meant for us!!! We did not see any bicycles and we were a little early, so kept on going!!!!

Day 18 of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 110.4
Total Ride Miles: 1872.9
Total Davily Elevation Climb: 525'
Daily Ride Time: 8 hrs.
Average Daily Speed: 17 mph

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Cajun Country

Another great start with temps in the high 60's, blue sky's, a light breeze and flat country.  LA 190 still has wide shoulders, traveling along the pine lined roadway.

Into Cajun Country and riding through Eunice, LA, settled by early Acadians in 1894, a area with rich prairie farmland.

Passing a Louisiana cemetery (above the ground).

The second half of the ride, shoulder conditions varied and sometimes were non existent.  I did a lot of dodging potholes and gravel.

I rode 13 miles east of Opelousas, formerly a French trading post settled in 1720, named for the Opelousas Indians.
Opelousas is where we are spending the night.

Day 17 of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 98.3
Total Ride Miles: 1762.5
Total Daily Elevation Climb: 443'
Total Daily Ride Time: 7 1/2 hrs.
Average Daily Speed: 15.8

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Adios Texas - Bienvenidos Louisiana

We started biking from Cleveland, TX at 8 AM with a light breeze, temps in the mid 60's and blue sky's.  Still on Texas 105 with its smooth wide shoulder. 

Approx.10 miles out was a pleasant surprise - a "Good Luck Roger" sign on the four way stop from "The Arnolds" What a thoughtful gesture - Thanks you for you continued support.

Today's ride took was  through pine and oak woods and grazing lands.

Next we traveled through Sour Lake, TX, the birthplace of theTexas Oil Co - Texaco!

The land between Sour Lake and Beaumont was predominately farmland with some lodging.

Cycling through Beaumont was a challenge, but we did make it through on frontage roads.  We took Texas 12 out of Texas and to the state line of Louisiana.   

In Louisiana the landscape changed dramatically - with bayous and swampland on either side of the roadway.
Over all it was a very good day - totaling 109.9 miles, ending in DeQuincy, LA, rumored to be "The Lost Mine of Wyndham Creek" where it was thought American Indians had discovered gold!

Day 16 of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 109.9
Total Ride Miles: 1664.2
Total Daily Elevation Climb: 416'
Total Daily Ride Time: 7 1/2 hrs.
Average Ride Speed: 16.7 mph

Monday, September 27, 2010

Act Of Kindness

We spent last night in Brenham, TX - hometown to Blue Bell Ice Cream - our favorite!
The temps were cold in the AM at 56 degrees, so out came the jacket and long finger gloves.  I rode on Rt 105 which had a smooth shoulder and rolling hills for a total of 108.3 miles.
On our way to Conroe we passed through Montgomery, which had several lakes surrounding the city including Lake Conroe which was a large beautiful lake.
After Conroe I cycled through the town of Cut and Shoot, TX.  The town was named in 1912 after a violent confrontation over the church steeple.  At one point a young boy near the church yelled out "I am scared!  I am going to "Cut" around the corner and "Shoot" through the bushes in a minute".
We finished the day in Cleveland, TX, named for Charles Lander Cleveland, who deeded 63 acres to the railroad for $1.00 and Cleveland become a city in 1878.
Dinner tonight was at the Red Rooster where we meet Danny and Kim Arnold, a charming local couple who upon hearing of our trip graciously bought our dinner - Thanks so much for you kindness, Danny and Kim
Day 15 of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 108.3
Total Ride Miles: 1554.3
Total Elevation Climb: 2473'
Daily Ride Time: 8 hrs.
Daily Average Speed: 15.4 mph

Sunday, September 26, 2010

White Knuckle Day With Heavy Traffic

We started out the day in Johnson City at 7:00 AM, it was still dark so I used my bike headlights.  Traveling on RR 2766 & RR 3232, passing creeks with "flood gauge" measurement signs.

We spotted a deer? behind a tall fence.  It was small, spotted with a large rack. 

 At Dripping Springs Roger got onto Hwy 290 to Hwy 71 through Austin.  We thought early Sunday morning there would not be much traffic, but Austin folks were on the move.
Some of the four lane roadway did not have shoulders, so Vicki followed behind with flashers on (it was a white knuckle time)

I had a little tail wind and overcast in the AM, the afternoon was very pleasant.
O yes - we saw more goats!!!

Day 14 Of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 110.4
Total Ride Miles: 1446
Total Daily Elevation Climb: 2979'
Total Daily Ride Time: 8 1/2 hrs.
Average Ride Speed: 16.5

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Day Of Rest

We decided to stay in Johnson City for an extra night and take a needed day of rest.  Roger would of been riding through Austin and Univ. of Texas had a home game and traffic would not of been good.
Early this morning we did drive into Austin (40 miles east of J.C.) on a back road that Roger would of taken biking and had to turn around due to flooding over the road - we did find another way. 

We had a late breakfast, stopped at a bike shop and a drive by the Capitol, which is under repairs.

Back in Johnson City Roger cleaned his bike, fixed the bike computer and watched some football.

We want to thank you all for your e-mails, phone calls, blog comments and thoughts and prayers.
Encouragement is good!
Some Local Humor!!

Full Moon In Johnson City, Texas

This morning was uplifting, cool temps and very little wind.  We started from Junction, TX on I-10 for 20 miles before turning onto Hwy 290 towards Austin.

We said good bye to I-10,  at least for awhile, and the many truckers who surprisingly were courteous on the highway by moving to the far lane whenever possible. Turning onto Hwy 290 we knew we were in "Hill Country" by the number of rolling hills, trees and grazing land.  We passed some long horn cattle and goats, goats and more goats!
At Fredericksberg, TX we stopped for lunch at the town park which had a lovely gabazzo.  The town was built by German farmers in 1846.  Many of the original homes were built of stone and are still utilized today.

Then the landscape changed to farmland and a few wineries.
We ended the day in Johnson City, a quaint town, birthplace of Lyndon B. Johnson, with 98.8 miles of biking. 

My computer battery "died" at 60  miles and we had to rely on the Suburbans odometer.

Day 13 of Riding:
Total Daily Miles: 98.8
Total Ride Miles: 1335.6
Total Daily Elevation Climb: NA
Total Daily Ride Time: 8 1/2 hrs.
Average Ride Speed: NA