Friday, March 04, 2005

Day 19 03/02/05 94 miles

I left Bobby's at 10.15am. I was planning on riding 80 miles or so to Williston, FL. I guess Bobby and I don't plan bike trips very well. The ride to Williston ended up being 94 miles. After my stop at Rainbow Springs(natural spring), I thought I would only have to ride 10 miles to the Williston Motor Inn. Shortly after leaving the park, less than a mile north of the park on US 41, there was a sign stating Williston was 20 miles away. I had to quickly come up with a plan. Bobby had called the motel last nite, and they told him there was only one vacancy for tomorrow. That got us excited. But we thought we would wait until this morning to see the status of the rooms. The motel said they would hold me a room until 5pm. It was 4.30pm now, and I was 20 miles from the motel. I called my mother because I couldn't get the motel to answer the phone. My mother of course came thru again. In order to contact the motel staff, she ended up calling room 101 and asking them to have the motel call her. The motel claimed the phone had just been ringing off the hook all day. So thanks to the occupants of room 101 (update: the occupants of room 101 live at the motel, I think it's family).

The Williston Motor Inn($38) is the only motel in town. So I was worked out. The motel tonite has the "No Vacancy" sign on. Oh Boy.

Today's ride had the most fluctuating road conditions. The ride was similar to an all day roller coaster. On County road 469, with no shoulders, a mack truck almost took care of me. For some reason the trucker couldn't wait 10 seconds of his life- he went to pass and a tractor trailer was heading towards us. The trucker did not have time to make it past me, so he slammed his brakes and swerved into the oncoming lane. The oncoming truck swerved and put half his rig off the road and into the grass. I don't know how close the trucker came to tagging me from behind, but I'm just glad I didn't look in the mirror! I felt the heat from the truck's engine on my backside.

There were no shoulders to Floral City. The ride calmed down when I got to Floral City- there was a bike path, Withlacoochee State Trail, a 46 mile trail starting in Trilby and running north to Dunnellon. I probably got to ride 20+ miles on it. The trail is a paved railroad bed. It was such a relief to get away from impatient people. What's so important in life anyway?

The final turn of the roller coaster ride was the 20 miles on US 41 to Williston. US 41 is a 2-lane highway that doesn't have a shoulder and the speed is 60 mph. Riding was just horrible, but I made it to the motel around 5.40pm.

There's an 80% chance of rain tomorrow, the temp is dropping in the 30s, and I'm planning on riding to Perry, FL. Perry is approx. 95 miles from here, but who knows the actual distance. Tomorrow could be super fun! I'm not being negative, the cars just have such a large influence on me. The trip would be so much more enjoyable if I could separate myself from them. I spend more time thinking, "how can I survive this particular situation?", instead of acknowledging my accomplishments and the beauty around me.


Blogger Steve said...

I've enjoyed reading of your trip. I found your blog by researching the biking conditions on US 41 between Williston and Dunnellon as it's part of a route I'd like to try one day. I'm now going to be bypassing Williston altogether and will take another route from Gainesville to Dunnellon.


6:48 PM  

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