Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Elizabethtown, IL

Amish around - I saw none

I used the floor pump at the church to inflate my front tyre fully for the first time since it punctured on my last day in Virginia. I can only get it semi-full with the small pump I carry with me. I had breakfast at the diner in Sebree and second breakfast in Clay, where I briefly saw Thomas and Abi. I carried on to Marion, KY and had an excellent lunch before rolling down to the Ohio River.

Farewell, Kentucky
As I approached, I saw vehicles coming towards me. I realised that meant the ferry had just docked and would soon be loading for the return journey. With a burst of speed, I made it on board and waved goodbye to Kentucky. The ferry runs all day with crossings every thirty minutes. There is no charge for passengers or vehicles. I disembarked at Cave in Rock, Illinois, my third state. I looked in vain for the welcome sign so I could take a photo. I was told later that it is on the road north past the junction where the TransAm Trail turns left. Before going that way myself, I turned right and went to investigate the state park. I had in mind to stay in the lodge there. I found it at the top of a very steep hill with an adjoining restaurant that is closed except at weekends. The setup wasn't quite what I wanted. I decided to keep cycling.

On Tower Rock Road, southern Illinois
I followed a quiet, scenic and hilly road west, parallel to the river, emerging eventually at Elizabethtown (pop. 350), my second stopping place of that name this week. Here I found the characterful and comfortable River Rose Inn. The co-owner, Bruce, is a great guy (I didn't meet his wife Sue as she is away for a few days). Although I took a room, he allows cyclists to camp at the back if they wish. If I hadn't had a rest day so recently, I would have taken one here. It is a picturesque spot with everything you need to relax completely and none of the distractions that kept me busy in Bardstown. A floating restaurant around the corner closes at 7pm.

Catfish a specialty
Today I cycled 107 km. My total so far, with three weeks out of twelve completed, is 1,629 km, approximately a thousand miles. That is satisfactory although the 502 km for the past week is on the low side. It is accounted for by my doing little or no cycling on the very hot days of Saturday and Sunday.

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