Day Before #44
- Steve's Trip Report Index
Day 45: Waycross, GA to Jekyll Island, GA
61 Miles: The Final Ride; Arrival In Jekyll Island and the Atlantic Ocean - March 16, 2008
|Palm Trees in Waycross, GA
|It was a beautiful morning with blue skies and warm weather, and I walked with the
bicycle to the nearby palm trees (top) that looked much better with morning light compared to
yesterday. So pretty! Other palm trees
were in the vicinity and I snapped photos of them before riding.
It was Sunday morning, a leisure and non-working day for most people
which meant less cars on the road. With the exception of my allergy woes that would pummel me by the afternoon, it
looked to be a really nice day to be outside and on a bike.
I definitely had an unusual amout of giddiness during portions of this ride.
At rest stops in Nahunta and Waynesville, I
sent short text messages, things like ... "Just 35 miles from the ocean", "20 miles from the beach!"
and "Only 5 miles from I-95!" Interstate 95 runs vertically from Maine to South Florida and
close to the Atlantic Coast much of the way. This was a sure sign that I was nearing the ocean.
||Like I said I would on "Day 41" in
let me tell you about the shape of the state of Georgia.
I occasionally noticed Georgia's "buckle up" sign -
the entire state was strapped in a seat belt. How creative!
Look closely at that state. To me, it looks like an animal (like a mountain lion or dog)
looking off to the right. On the east side of Georgia, the farthest point (Savannah)
is his nose, the slight indentation near Augusta is his eyes and the area of the
bottom tip of land in SE Georgia looks like a mouth with his tongue hanging out.
It looks like Winnie The Pooh! Do you see it? I thought of Winnie The Pooh
every time I saw one of these Georgia signs! :)
Above: Getting close! Just 16 miles to the ocean at Jekyll Island.
|In the western part of Glynn County, I had one scare.
I was riding in a fairly open area with not much traffic, and a young girl in a
car pulled up to Highway 82 from a country road. Generally, I have had
the habit of making eye contact with drivers stopped perpendicularly as I passed them.
As I approached the intersection, I saw her (but did not have eye contact),
then I continued riding past her ... when suddenly I heard and saw her car
turn onto the highway right towards me.
"Whoa!" I shouted, then "Whoooooooooah!" a second or two later.
Only after my scream did I capture her attention and she stopped.
It all happened so fast. "I'm sorry!" the driver quickly blurted. Her
tone of voice communicated she felt really bad about it, and apparently, she had not seen me.
Quickly, I turned back and waved at her
with a smile as she passed me and joined the eastbound lanes.
I did not want her to feel guilty at all about it,
especially if she was going to church on this Sunday morning!
Hopefully, I did not sound too angry; It was just a split-second
reaction to a situation that triggered me into self-survival mode.
In my five years of cycling, I had never been injured or hit by a
and then to have this scary moment on my last day.
||I rode under Interstate 95 and the terrain changed one last time.
Large bodies of water and inlets to the ocean were in most directions with marshlands on the roadside.
That large bridge would have led me to Brunswick and St. Simons Island, but
I turned right (where those cars were turning) and headed to Jekyll Island. :)
|Jekyll Island, Georgia
|I stopped at this sign for Jekyll Island, an alluring area with palm trees and human-designed lakes.
It was a mere four or five miles now on a relaxed two-lane road to the island.
A bridge stood over an inlet to enter onto Jekyll Island,
with significant ascent for about a tenth of a mile.
The grade seemed like no big deal, but that was probably because of my amazing riding shape by this time. My
legs "tore into" that hill - I rode hard and fast without breathing hard or any anguish
whatsoever. In my ordinary riding shape, I am confident I would have handled the bridge okay, but
I would have struggled somewhat. I marveled at how in-shape I was and how automatic my cycling mindset
turned on as I took it on.
I was really strong physically at this point,
probably as fit as I will ever be for the remainder of my life.
I rode into the Jeykll Island Convention Center parking
lot and onto a wooden bridge for pedestrians on the edge of the beach. The sand was so soft that I could not ride, and
so I waddled with my bike between my legs until the sand was hard enough again.
Just a small number of people were scattered along the lengthy beach area.
I rode towards the water and ...
|Standing In The Atlantic Ocean
... there was no more land to ride on.
To those who have read many of my writings from these 45 days: Thank you for coming along with me!
Above: My odometer at the beach. I put on 2,090 miles from Phoenix, AZ.
|The Bare Facts - Bicycling Across America
Mileage - Total: 2,465 miles, Average mileage on riding days: 64.8 miles,
Longest ride: 126 miles
(Brownfield, TX to Aspermont, TX),
Shortest Ride: 22 miles (Blythe, CA to Quartzsite, AZ)
Route - Southern Tier of USA (San Diego CA, Phoenix AZ,
Socorro NM, south of Lubbock TX, north of Dallas TX, southern Arkansas, Greenville MS,
Montgomery AL, Albany GA, Jekyll Island GA)
Flat Tires - 11 (Front: 2, Back: 9)
Bikes - 2. First bike stolen in Phoenix, AZ;
Second bike bought and used remainder of the way.)
Total Days - 45 days. (38 days riding, 7 days off; 6 weeks and 3 days)
Days Off - 7 days. (Poor weather: 3, Fun rest days with friends: 2, Bike problems: 2)
Number of Photos - 822 photos taken during the 45 day journey
Number of states - 8 (California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia)
Day Before #44
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