Saturday, October 8, 2011

Ferris wheel in Myrtle Beach NC
Part of Myrtle Beach
Stars and bars still flying in South Caroling
Hey, 120 miles. Guys got to take a rest
Charleston Bay bridge
Aircraft carrier in bay-photo from peak of bridge
Day 17
Distance 120 miles
Weather 60-76 degrees
wind-NNE 10-15 gusting to 20 mph
The journey from Little River SC to Charleston SC, with detours, was 120 miles. The first 50 were on route 17. Not to disparage the road builders here in South Carolina, but why did you build 4 lane divided highways with no shoulder. With a 60 mph speed limit, knowing cars are going at least 70, it is like driving on interstates with no shoulder. Even disregarding the fact that bikes use this road, what about an auto that might need to stop for an emergency. There is literally no room. And, in fact, when they did have a shoulder it was no bigger than 18 inches wide and they put rumble strips on them. That meant that bicyclists had to ride in the road which is not a good situation for bikers or motorists. The amusing part of this is that there were signs to "share the road" with cyclists. Go figure. After leaving Georgetown the next 50 miles were mile after mile of pine trees. At first they made the biking a very scenic experience. But after the first 30 miles the scenery was getting redundant and one might even suggest BORING.
With a very favorable wind and the fact we were biking 120 miles this made the ride seem like.....................WRONG. It still seemed like 120 miles. Even with or without a wind that is a long way for a bunch of old geezers to bike in one day.
Two major high spots were the ride through Myrtle Beach and crossing the Charleston Bay Bridge. Myrtle Beach upon first observation was a typical resort town. But after a mile or so it became apparent it was somewhat different. In addition to the magnificent hotels, it was obvious there were many entertainment options. In addition to water parks, amusement rides for children as well as adults, and a plethora of restaurants one could just go to the ATLANTIC coast beaches to swim and relax. Some of our group mentioned Myrtle beach is the best beach they have ever been to. I would like to vacation there sometime.
The other highlight of the day was crossing the Charleston Bay Bridge. At over two miles long, it is the longest cable-stay bridge in the Western hemisphere. The climb to the peak was intense as it rises 116 feet above the bay and the wind was swirling. At the top, the view is grand and photo options unlimited. I took many photos including the aircraft carrier Yorktown in addition to Will Smiths yacht. Apparently he is in the area this weekend. Well, that concludes today's adventure so stay tuned for more tomorrow. We travel to historic Beaufort, SC.

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