Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Cross city to West Frostproof, FL.


Day: 51

Sunday Mileage: 108

Monday Mileage: 85

Total: 2,864

Well, i have been hauling butt and I am just about to the east coast. I should be in Miami tomorrow evening where I will e staying with one of my best buddies from college. I just have to get through a stretch of highway called alligator alley....maybe i wont be camping out there!

Sunday was a bit of a big change. I felt like in the space of a few miles I went from riding through a Jeff Foxworthy joke to Gone With the Wind. I went from mobile homes to country estates with huge, beautiful lands with horses everywhere. It got a little hilly too, which was a surprise for Florida.

The scenery has remained very beautiful and there are lots of wild flowers here, very similar to the hill country of Texas. Sunday night I stayed in Lake Griffin State Park in Florida, which was a nice change from consistently missing them in the last week.

One piece of advice if you plan on riding though this area is to take some bug spray. They eat me alive every evening and morning when i get off the bike. No joke, there are times when I am riding in the evening that the insects are so thick it feels like you are riding through the rain. It stinks, they fly in your mouth, your eyes, up your noes. That has definitely not been too fun. The mosquitoes i knew, but they have these little bugs called no-see-ums here that are literally so small they are dang near invisible. Despite their small size, they pack a mean bite and leave welts all over your skin.

Monday was a bit of a rough day. I had headwinds all day and i struggled to put miles down, plus it dumped on me a few times and i got soaked. It rains sporadically here, just for a half hour or so, then it stops, then another cloudburst throughout the day. The rain wasn't so bad though because it kept me cool. It has gotten pretty dang hot and humid as I have gone south.

Last night was wretched because of the heat and humidity. I camped out in the woods and slept in my hammock, which turned out to be a really bad choice. Imagine sleeping in a sauna wrapped in a heating blanket and you have an idea of what last night was like. I had to put my sleeping mat under me to keep the bugs from bitting me through the hammock and that insulated me, trapping my body heat next to my skin, plus my body was hot from riding all day, so i just lay in my little oven of a hammock pouring sweat. I striped down to just my shorts and i was still dripping. I had to tie my shirt around my head to stop the sweat from running into my eyes and ears.

It was a really horrible way to lay there, and i am pretty sure that that is a form of torture in ancient China. Needless to say, i didn't sleep much, and when i woke up i drank about a gallon of water, i was so dehydrated. However, today I am pumped because I am almost to my destination and, get ready for this.....i have a tailwind!!!!!!!!!!! I almost dint believe it! On instinct i almost turned around and started riding into it because that feels normal for me! It is a really light tailwind, but still, im happy for what i can get. Well, i need to hit it, i have to get another century under my belt today.


Mama said...

Reese's pieces, I just don't know about this attitude you've developed towards animals. First you say you won't play peekaboo with a cute horse for hours on end. Then you say you won't sleep with alligators. What's wrong with gators Reece? Next you are going to throw it out there that when you get to east,you aren't going to adopt any pet cobras. Adventurer? I just don't know anymore.

Zee said...

Oh my gosh, I just read the part about "Reptile skin man"!! Oh my gosh, if he even remotely resembled Charles Manson, you were wise to head outta that area! Ashlee calls guys like that "Creepers" and she has met a few in London, believe it or not! I worry about her all the time. I hope you have some form of defense, pepper spray/knife come to mind!! I've requested an angel in spandex with a helmet to sit on your shoulder, has she made it yet?

Lisa in Louisiana said...

I'm thinking it's time to invest in a good mosquito net that you can wrap up in before getting into your hammock. The insects and heat are only going to get worse the further south you go and also as you venture into Mexico/Central America.

TP said...

haha...mama's callin the bluff!

Reecius said...

hahaha, ok, you got me. im really a big sissy. to prove my machismo im going to sleep in a swamp with a pork chop suit on. Then im sure all the gators will love me!