Fayetteville, TN – Counce, TN
Miles Ridden – 156
Total Miles – 953
Today’s Travel Time – 9.5 hrs
Water Crossings – 6
Animal Totem – Smooshed Armadillo
What I learned today – Staying at a hotel does not actually save us any time. Also, Tennessee is every kind of beautiful.
I suppose it’s because we had all of our gear off the bikes, but it still baffles me as to how long it takes to get going in the mornings. I thought staying at a hotel would shave off an hour or so of get ready to go time, but in fact it added one! As I’ve been saying a lot lately… Oh well!!
Pulling out about 10:30 we were off- back on the TAT for another day of adventure! Maybe it’s just my perception, but there was more of a feel of being in the groove today. We’ve been at this almost a week now, and have encountered every kind of unexpected shit. We no longer flinch when someone misses a turn and we have to turn around, we know that we need to stop every 45 minutes or so for a butt break, and we’ve covered almost 1,000 miles of all kinds of terrain.
It also didn’t hurt that the day was gorgeous- blue sky, sunshine, and the perfect riding temperature. We took a break a little ways down the road, standing in awe of the beauty of the natural world, and (with Stefan being part of our team) all of the cow patties ☺️
There was this amazing cloud stretching wide and a few little sundog rainbows in the sky.
Around 1:30 we got to a pit stop and ate last night’s leftover pizza in the gas station parking lot, chatting away with several of the locals who were in awe of what we were doing- some thought us nuts, some were envious.
It has been a lot of fun and a complete riot to observe how people react to our answer to the question, ‘where are y’all headed?’ Which we get quite frequently. And every time we reply, it’s a reminder of how far away Oregon actually is. It is quite possible that we are nuts ☺️
Our next pit stop was at a beautiful little country church on the roadside, where dad took a nap on a bench while Stefan and I explored what would be our next water crossing.
The sun was beginning to get low in the sky as we crossed the gorgeous Tennessee River and pulled into Counce, TN. That’s when things took a turn for the more interesting- unfortunately it being Memorial Day Weekend meant that every campsite and hotel in town was booked solid! We finally found an open single room at Little Andy’s Lodge where I graciously took the bed (after being on the rollaway last night), Dad slept on the floor, and Stefan put his tarp and thermarest over the manky pull out couch. It was cosy but we all fit and made it work.