The day started with an excellent cycler breakfast and a quick look at the map to plan the days ride. I decided to aim to get back onto bike route 5, and renew my love hate relationship with the route. Cindy warned that the day would start with a bit of a climb but I would be fine. Well it was immediately clear that the many weeks of mostly flat riding was about to end. The first hill was really quite steep, it has been a while since my legs did much climbing, so it was slow going. I eventually rejoined the route (temporarily) and was on my way. Despite there seemingly only being one road, I still managed to lose the route for a short section. Bike route 5 goes from being very well sign posted, to completely elusive in the blink of an eye. The hills got fewer throughout the day and thankfully that one at the start remained the steepest. Passing through Lyons, without immediately noticing, I left the adventure cycling maps for the last time. Even though I hadn’t really used them for the last few days, it still felt a little emotional and weird to be without them, from now on, I was making up my own route, which could prove very dangerous. I decided not to stop in Lyons for lunch, instead heading to Clyde, simply due to its Scottish name. It turned out to be a bad decision, Clyde is basically a dead town, with very little to offer in terms of food.
The whole day had looked like it was going to rain, and after my very unsatisfactory lunch, it started. This, combined with the fact that my phone had completely lost signal, left me in a bad mood as I plodded on through the rain. Not having maps or phone signal made it very difficult to know how far the next towns were and where to aim for for the day. Just as the rain was getting heavier, my phone started working, so I was able to set the modest target of Weedsport just 17 miles away. Once I had set a target, my mood improved and riding in the rain was actually pretty fun. This was the first spell of heavy rain that I have ridden in, 62 days into the trip, I can’t really complain. Because of the rain and the lack of other options, I decided to get a motel in Weedsport. By the time I reached the motel, I was soaked. I didn’t put any rain gear on because it wasn’t that cold, so I was in good need of drying off.
The evening was spent watching tv and trying to plan the next few days to avoid any mishaps like today. Later on in the evening I realised that for the first time in the whole trip, my back tyre was flat. I have no idea when it happened during the day, but it must have gone down so gradually that I didn’t even notice. The back tyre is slightly trickier to fix but still not much of a problem. The biggest worry was that I couldn’t find the cause of the puncture, but tired and ready for bed, I simply put a new tube (same tube that I bought with Jerry in Lewistown) in and then gave up. The flat roads may be over but in terms of tyres, the flat days aren’t done yet.