Another really tough day in the Apps.
I passed some serious mountains today, stuff steeper and more gritty than anything in the Rockies. By ‘gritty’ I mean sheer drop offs off the side of the road, potholes, asphalt crumbling away. Not a good place to bike at night.
I passed some real squalor today…whole cars in creeks, trash everywhere, a man yelling obscenities at me when he drove by, then shooting at his chickens half mile up the road when he stopped at his dilapidated trailer. One lady I met shuddered at the thought of me biking in the area, due to, in her opinion, the major drug infestation and the unfriendly drivers. I was in the roughest section, as luck would have it, at dusk. But I made it through.
As is typical, I paid for a late start today. Darkness caught me about 5 miles before the KY-VA border. But at least the road was quiet for a while. One hundred yards before the state border, in a parting state farewell, a large dog made for me in the pitch dark. It startled me, I about toppled over on my bike. And I startled it…with the road already moist from the dewfall, the dog skidded out in the middle of the asphalt then went running as fast as possible back to its house. The adrenalin coursed through my veins! Half an hour later I was in a campground in Breaks State Park, spelling my address letter by letter to the attendant there. I thought to myself, ‘thank God for the education that I received!’