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Saturday, October 7, 2017

Southern Transcon - Finish in Tybee Island GA

Friday Oct 6 marked the end of the 2017 PAC Tour Southern Transcontinental.  As I previously mentioned, I only participated for the final week of the tour (western edge of AL to Tybee Island GA), about 550 miles in 5 days.  

The last day was 87 miles and pretty level, although accompanied by some headwinds and a very brief little rain shower about half an hour from the end point.  As we drew closer to Savannah, traffic increased significantly, especially large truck traffic.  This made for tense riding, but thankfully there were no close calls or accidents in this section.

PAC Tour puts on a very nice closing banquet with a slide show and presentation of individual plaques to the riders.  The final host hotel (Hotel Tybee) looks right out at the ocean and was a great venue for the end of the trip.

One of the lovely streets in Savannah.  Plenty of Spanish moss and huge historic homes

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Southern Transcon Georgia Day 2

Today was one of those days where you just rode to get from point A to point B (in our case, Cordele GA to Metter GA).  Scenery at least for the first 70 miles was largely unexciting.  Instead, our attention was focused on staying safe on US 280, as there was a steady amount of large truck traffic on the two lane road.  Some sections had no shoulder, and a very rough rumble strip along the fog line.

We once again faced 10-15 mph headwinds all day, which kept our speed down.  Jack and I finished a little before 6 pm.  Tomorrow is the final day of this tour, when the group will ride through Savannah to Tybee Island.

Retta and I finished the day by walking over to Paul's Pondhouse Seafood & Steak for a great meal, and fellowship with Karl and Martha who are crewing on this tour.

A section of US 280
Note the rough rumble strip and minimal shoulder
Montgomery County Courthouse

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Southern Transcon - Georgia Day 1

This morning we left Eufaula AL and immediately crossed Walter F George Lake (a reservoir formed by damming the Chattahoochee River) into Georgia.  Once we turned off the main highway (US 82), traffic was low volume and the road conditions were generally excellent.  We did continue to battle headwinds, but today's climbing was somewhat less than the previous two days.

We passed cotton and peanut fields, and rode through many miles of forests, all very scenic.  I had never been to Americus GA before.  Plains and Americus were more widely recognized during the administration of Jimmy Carter. 

The day ended in Cordele GA after 116 miles.  We continue on tomorrow with a destination of Metter GA.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Southern Transcon - Alabama Day 2

More hills and headwinds were the order of the day, so we got a good workout riding from Greenville AL to Eufaula AL.  Total climbing was a little over 5000 feet and the distance covered was 111 miles.  Jack and I stuck together, and this made the day feel like an extension of the 2016 Northern Transcon.

I suffered a terrible cramp in my right thigh last night, but it subsided after about 10 seconds.  I tried to pay more attention to getting enough electrolytes today, so hopefully won't experience any more of those painful cramps.

Retta is continuing to work hard as part of the lunch crew.  She enjoys the companionship of Martha, another crew member, while driving the route.

Headwinds are supposed to continue for the remainder of the week, so we still have some tough days ahead.  The weather has been excellent otherwise.


Monday, October 2, 2017

Southern Transcon - Sweet Home Alabama

This was Day 1 for me and Day 23 for those who started in San Diego last month.  We left Livingston AL (15 miles from the MS state line), and rode 128 miles across part of AL to end the day in Greenville.  After about 10 miles of Monday morning traffic (not terrible, since Livingston is not a big place), we turned onto some lightly traveled roads.

Most of the day was spent on AL state routes 28 and 10.  The course featured a lot of rolling hills, although none were super steep.  We did have an unrelenting headwind of 11 mph out of the east.  There were many logging trucks that passed us early in the day, but all of the truck drivers were courteous, patient and safe.

Tomorrow will be an early start (depart at 7 am) to get to Eufaula AL (111 miles).  This "mini" tour is going well and my first time riding in AL.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Southern Transcon - Abbreviated

We arrived in Livingston AL today to pick up the last week of the PAC Tour Southern Transcontinental (ends Friday at Tybee Island GA).  The tour crosses Alabama and Georgia this week, logging about 550 miles over some rolling terrain.

Our original plan was to join the tour on the last day for a reunion with some friends from last summer's Northern Transcon; however, some riders left early and this opened up a few spots so we decided to go for a week.

This will be my first time riding in Alabama.  I will have the pleasure of working  with Jack, my cycling partner from the Northern Transcon.  Retta has already been volunteering with the crew today.

We made it to tonight's motel in Livingston in time to see some of the riders roll in.