Really heavy rain to start the day. It rained constantly from 8am until I was done with breakfast. The forecast was for rain until around 11am, so I made the decision to just hang around the motel until then, with a short day of only around 50 miles today. The late start meant that I was able to make a second trip to the breakfast buffet. Right on queue, the rain stopped, the back tyre seemed to be fine now, so I headed on my way.
I have found in the past that short days tend to be the hardest, mentally I think I have arrived before I have even set off, but in reality, 40/45 miles still requires 4/5 hours worth of cycling. Today proved to be no different, especially with the late start, it was sluggish riding from the start. The sun was out, but it was still bitterly cold, especially in the shade. But once again, this meant that if I did stop, then I didn’t stop for long. I really have gone full circle from the start of the trip where I would jump into any shade I could find and hide there for as long as necessary, now the sun has become an allies. The first part of the day saw me follow bike route 5 back up north to rejoin the canal.
The rest of the day followed bike route 5, which has now joined state route 5. This is a larger road, but with this increase in road size also came an increase in shoulder size, initially at least. The next part of the day was forgettable, very forgettable in fact. But then came a period of about 10 miles of roadworks. Roadworks are usually bad news, not only because the road quality decreases, but also because, more often than not, the first part of the road to get sacrificed is the shoulder. As usual, this was the case and what followed was a long spell of high traffic, with no shoulder on cycling bad quality roads. I don’t know if it was a case of the grass being greener, but the quality of road did genuinely seem to be better on the other side. If the roads weren’t so busy, I may have even considered driving on the left hand side, you know, the way god intended. This stretch of cycling also strained my relationship with bike route 5 even further. It seems that the signs just stop on occasions, usually when the road quality decreases, almost like they are embarrassed to call these sections bike routes, so they just stop advertising it.
About two miles from Little Falls, the roadworks ended and despite the relatively short day, I was definitely ready to stop. Its difficult to know what a place is going to be like before arriving, sometimes they are a pleasant surprise (Medora) and sometimes they are not (Circle). Unfortunately, today was one of those that was not. I went straight to the motel, got dinner in the motel and spent the whole evening in the motel, apart from a brief trip to the neighbouring dollar store to get some supplies (sweets). At the store, I witnessed probably the most blatant act of theft I think I’ve ever seen, I decided to pay for my goods and headed back to my room. Hoping to take a big chunk out of New York state tomorrow.