Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Spring 15 Tour Day 5 - Nags Head to Plymouth NC

Hello from Plymouth, North Carolina, Plymouth is 76 miles from Nags Head. The wind was a cross wind from the south, which is why we got in two hours earlier than yesterday, which had tough headwinds. Temperatures were in the 70. All in all, a beautiful day.

It's been sunny out, so I've got that bike tourist tan going. You can tell I always wear my helmet.

There isn't much on Nags Head compared with our Maryland and Delaware beach towns. You can tell there used to be even less, and they've built lots of big houses along the beach in recent years. You can still feel the little bungalow and bait shop vibe sometimes.

Here's the approach to Roanoke Island, you can see a bunch of new townhouses in the distance. Roanoke is the site of Capt. John Smith's lost colony, Pocahontas, and all that.

 Here is a picture of my leg that I took by mistake. I decided I like this picture, so I'm keeping it and putting in on the blog. If I meant to take this picture of my leg, there would be a "No cell phone use while driving" sign in the background.

Breakfast was on the mainland, 10 miles down the road and over two long bridges, at this country store. Nothing was open in Nags Head. There was a diner on Roanoke, but I was ahead of Jim when I turned off the main road to get to it, and Jim kept riding.

The route today was way better than I thought it would be. We were more or less following US 64. I expected to spend most of the day riding the shoulder of 64, or on frontage roads, but it turned out 64 has little traffic and goes through crazy wild swamps for the first 30 miles. There is a progression of ever more alarming warning signs:


Jim does not like signs about dangerous wildlife, which I learned when we rode across the Everglades where there are signs about panthers. I found some news articles about mountain lions in Iowa to reassure him before RAGBRAI after that.

There were lots of pileated woodpeckers flying over.

We had lunch at the Good Times Tavern and Restaurant in Columbia, NC. Barbecue, corn nuggets, and fried okra, just like you would hope.

After Columbia, we had 30 miles of back roads. This was your classic rural south in the springtime. Lots of decaying buildings, collapsing barns, flowers, and trees in blossom. There were tractors tilling cotton fields.

We are staying at the immaculately clean and spacious Sportmans' Inn, a classic old roadside motel. RDOQ at it's best. There is a Holiday Inn Express next door, where you can spend more money for no reason. There is also a Bojangles, so we ate tasty chicken while watching the Orioles game in our room. Cable systems in North Carolina have MASN, so you can chalk one up in the WIN COLUMN for that!

Here is the track on Strava:

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