One more day – the feeling was “I think I can do this!” A bunch of us drank coffee in the pre-dawn under the picnic shelter at our Shuttle Guy camp. After intermittent showers the evening before it was another overcast day that looked like pending rain. The coffee helped bolster me and I was ready to go off in search of breakfast. Poor Charlie was left with packing all the bags and gear in the pickup. I left quite a mess, thank goodness he loves me.
Craig and I rode over to McDonalds for some breakfast. Once on the bike my legs were screaming at me. The first 8 miles to the dam we saw no one since I convinced Craig of the WRONG route to take out of town. But once across the dam we connected with the official route for the day and continued on in the mist. I turned on my blinky light, that along with my neon yellow jacket, made me very visible to the motorists.
We stopped for one picture overlooking Lake Oahe otherwise our first rest stop was at the race track where we talked with others on the ride around a small camp fire built into the center of a granite table top about bar height. I pulled out a can of Amp that I was carrying on my bike for an emergency like this – severe lack of energy.
The next several miles on highway 1804 were a bit monotonous….lots of power lines. All the rest stops until we got to Bob’s Resort (16 miles out of Gettysburg) were just stops along the road, so we skipped a few of those. At the next rest stop I visited again with the man from Portland on the Bike Friday. I was ready to slow down a bit so I told Craig to go ahead. Rumor was Biking Brady, the Mayor and Tammy were not too far ahead of us; I gave Craig my blessing to go catch them.
By the time I got to Bob’s the gang was having lunch and I arrived just in time to eat their left overs as they were full. Just 16 miles to go! And about 3 miles on the other side of Bob’s my bike computer turned over to 10,000 miles so I had to stop and take some pictures and tell my bike what a superstar she is!
One last low, but long climb and I arrived in Gettysburg at the finish line in the park greeted by my dear, sweet husband! I made it, all 453 miles of TDK 2009!
A few pictures of friends at the finish line:
Argus Leader stories: