Thursday, July 29

There were severe thunderstorm warnings last night for Vermilion, and we did get a couple of storms passing through, but it didn’t amount to as much as was expected. Still, the hotel we were in was really nice and comfortable, and the breakfast this morning (included) was quite good. We were completely satisfied that we got our money’s worth.

Today was our biggest day yet, and we were a bit trepidatious about it, but it came off as well as could possibly be expected. After the storms came through last night the winds shifted around to the north, so we had mostly side winds instead of head winds today. We are reaching the western end of Lake Erie, so are moving northwest rather than southwest, and we had a few sections where we rode due north today, which was tough going straight into the wind.

We left Vermilion about 8:00, and rode about 22 or 23 miles to Sandusky, where we found a restaurant serving breakfast. The meal was good, but the service was really slow, so we were there about an hour. As we were leaving, and retrieving our bikes parked on the sidewalk outside, we spent a few minutes chatting with a couple sitting at an outside table who were cyclists as well, then we headed back out on the road.

From Sandusky we headed to Port Clinton, on the other side of Sandusky Bay. The only was across the bay is on the Rt 2 causeway, which is a highway and is actually closed to cyclists. The being no other way, we got on at the last entrance before the causeway, cycled over the causeway and bridges on the wide shoulder, and got off at the first exit. The riding was not at all difficult, but my personality does not lend itself to breaking rules, so I was anxious the entire time. It was a relief to be off the highway and back on legal roads.

We rode 163 for a while, then eventually had to hook up with Rt 2 again. By this point Rt 2 is no longer a limited access highway, and was perfectly legal for us to ride on. But it still carried all the same traffic, including lots of semis. For most of the way the shoulder was extremely narrow and in very bad repair, so the riding was not even remotely enjoyable. We just took turns pulling in to the wind while high-speed traffic whizzed by our left shoulders.

About 70 miles into our ride we were finally able to get off of Rt 2 and onto some quieter roads. It was peaceful and nice, but by now I was getting tired and just wanted to get to our destination, so I kept pushing hard and we finally arrived here at the park with about 76 miles on the odometer. Phew, we did it!

Once we got our campsite we set the tent up and stashed our panniers inside, then rode the bike path down to the beach. We hadn’t yet sampled the waters of Lake Erie, and wanted to do that. Nope. Nyet. No thank you! The water was opaque green, with long tendrils of algae floating in the surf. We dipped our feet in, and that was enough. By the time we rode back to our campsite, we had a bit over 80 miles on the odometer, so today was an 80 mile day. We feel pretty darned good considering how much ground we covered today.

It is a beautiful evening out; clear, cool and dry, with a nice breeze blowing. The air feels wonderful, and yet most of the campers here and the AC running on their RV’s. I don’t get it.

Tomorrow we will be off to Toledo, and then we’ll strike north towards Detroit.

Allen & Jodi

default iconJuly29.gpx