We had a certain sense of urgency today as we needed to get to the bike shop in Rogers City in time to have Jodi’s bike looked at before they closed at 4 pm. That being so, we were all packed and ready to go by 7:30 when the motel served their continental breakfast. As continental breakfasts go, this one was pretty sparse so it didn’t take us long and we were on the road a bit after 8:00.

We soon worked our way out of town and onto the North Eastern State Trail, which is a rail trail paved with crushed limestone that heads northwest from Alpena. Rail trails tend to be flat and straight and can get tedious after a while, and this one was no exception. But it went through trees quite a lot and that went far to shield us from the head winds that plagued us so much yesterday, and also kept my fair skin out of the sun as an extra bonus. And we did enjoy a couple of nice wildlife sightings. At one point we stopped to admire a group of 9 hawks circling as they hunted some farm fields, and 4 or 5 times we scared up a deer.

The route we planned using Google Maps had us using the North Eastern State Trail until just northwest of Posen, then turning north onto another trail. Unfortunately that other trail didn’t actually exist on the ground, but it was a simple enough matter to plot a new route using roads. The down side is that now we were out in the open and exposed to the full force of the headwind, but we still managed to make it into Rogers City by early afternoon and get Jodi’s bike checked out.

It turns out that her derailleur is fine; it just needed to be adjusted correctly. I also had a minor adjustment done to my bike and we had both chains lubed. Hopefully we’re both in good shape now.

We’re staying at a motel a few blocks down from the bike shop, and we have the patio door open to enjoy the fresh breeze blowing off the lake. The sound of the waves on the shore is hypnotically relaxing.

We’re going to try to get to Mackinaw City tomorrow, or even across the bridge to St Ignace. The entrance to the bridge is about 60 miles from here. That’s a perfectly doable distance, except that the wind is still going to be in our faces tomorrow. Yes, this is getting rather tedious! Our plan is NOT to wait around for the continental breakfast tomorrow, bur to get up early, boil some water for tea and oatmeal, then hit the road and get in some miles while the air is calm.

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