I chose a different route to go home, one that I was very familiar with for the most part. I hadn’t ridden on this section of 19 or 309C before, it was countryside, neighborhoods and mostly quiet. Once I turned left onto 100 I quickly connected with the Lake Butler Palatka Trail. I have ridden this Trail many times and enjoy the tree cover, wetlands and forest setting.
No sooner did I get on the Trail that I decided to stop and secure my solar radio to my sleeping bag on the front rack so I could listen to the different Christian radio stations along the way, great idea! It was awesome to ride with tunes.
The trail winds through the woods at times away from 100 and other times it runs alongside 100. Once I see Florahome off to my left I know it is not too much farther to the North Florida Christian Camp sign then Putnam Hall.
Once I got to Putnam Hall I turned left off the Trail on to 26. The 5 mile stretch from Putnam Hall to Melrose is like a roller coaster. Since I only had a Protein Bar for breakfast I was excited to get to Melrose so I could eat lunch at Subway, I was getting really hungry!
After passing Lake Swan Camp I knew Subway was getting close. Once I arrived at Subway I ordered a double meat and cheese Roast Beef & Swiss, awesome! The Subway Sandwich Artist saw my rig and asked if I was going cross country. I shared with her about my Prep Ride and upcoming GTD '20 Ride. She shared with me about the long distance cyclists that have stopped in to eat after leaving St. Augustine or on their way to St. Augustine. Melrose isn't on the Southern Tier Bike Route from St. Augustine to San Diego or vice versa.
After lunch I knew it was only 17 miles to the house. Oftentimes I break a Route up into smaller segments in my mind so as to make it seem less than it is. From Melrose it is 5 miles to Orange Heights then 12 miles to the house. In the final 12 miles when I see the bend in the road ahead I know that I am about to cross a narrow bridge then see a blinking light in the distance at the 26 & 222 split, it helps me stay engaged during familiar rides. On rides I am not familiar with it is town to town on Google Maps.
Once I passed the GNV Airport entrance I knew home was 2 miles away. As I passed the Dignity Village Bus Stop I checked to see if any of my DV friends were waiting, none that I knew were.
I arrived home and was pleased with my ride and what I learned from it. I realized I hadn't packed my Rain Cover, Extension Cord, Lantern, Ibuprofen or Hat. I will add those things to my BOB Bag for my upcoming 4 day (February 14-17) ride from Mom's House in Orlando to Ft. Pierce and back. I am riding to Prep more but also share a CCH Update with our church friends in Ft. Pierce. I am looking forward to the challenge as my daily mileage will be more representative of what I will ride on a daily basis during GTD '20.
Thanks for joining me in this journey, for your encouragement, prayers and support!
Until next post, live adventurously and love God!