We thought today's ride would be pretty boring. We were going from Eagle Lake to Lake Washington (funny...I don't see Seattle or Bellevue!). In reality, today's ride turned out to have four very different sections.
The first section was the one-lane levee road section. Along this road we crossed 8 cattle guards, but saw not one cow. What we did see were tons of egrets. There were also only 4 vehicles, all pickup trucks that passed us. It was a pleasant ride.
The second section was the detour. Along the levee we came to a place where the road was closed to thru traffic. There was a detour sign. At first the detour was fine--a few barking dogs, but otherwise a nice road. Then another detour sign pointed left onto a gravel road (really???). We followed it hoping it would just be a short section. After about 2 miles or so, we came to a paved road. We were still on the detour route. Maybe a mile along the paved road we were directed back onto another gravel road. We were on this part for a good three miles. Actually, I was doing just fine. I think my riding on dirt and gravel with Star at home has been really helpful. Betsy, with her 1.75" tires, handles gravel without any problems. At the end of this gravel road, we popped back out onto the correct route. I pulled out my phone to see exactly where we were. It didn't seem that the detour added any more miles. In fact, it may have been shorter.
The third section was Mayersville. It was the only town shown on the map. Christian didn't have any lunch food, so we asked if there was a store in town. Some guys directed us to Tony's Store. It seemed to be the main hangout on a Saturday for the town locals. A couple of guys asked us about our ride. I told them we had ridden from Austin just to come to the fine town of Mayersville! Christian bought a hot dog and some fries. I had food of my own to eat, but I bought ice cream after lunch. When I went in to buy the ice cream, I asked to use the restroom. For the first time ever, instead of giving me a key, the guy gave me a roll of toilet paper! Okay...
After watching the town locals chew the fat, we headed down the road. Not long after turning on Glen Allen Rd., we were beeped at by a Sheriff's car. A long line of cars were following it. About the sixth car in the line was a hearse. Christian counted 26 cars. I asked him if he knew what the long line of cars was. He did not. I had to explain what a funeral procession was. I told him that was an unusual thing to see on a bike tour. After awhile, we saw two of the three sheriff cars coming back the other direction. Before long, we came to the cemetery where the funeral was being held. It was in the historic Greenfield Cemetery. There are the remains of an old brick church that was destroyed by a cyclone in 1800 something. We stopped to check it out. As we were leaving, I told the deputy, who was still there, that I've never been in a funeral procession while on a bike tour!
The fourth section of today's ride was along the lake. Mostly what we had seen in the way of homes along today's route were either mobile homes, or small, shabby looking houses (we did see a lot of apartments in Mayersville, yet no apparent industry). However, along the lake, the houses were very nice and the area looked very prosperous. There was only one store (more of a bait shop). I imagine people have to go to Greenville for groceries. The road was tree-lined in places, and a nice ride.
Our destination for tonight is Roy's Store. It is on the lake. We went into the store to ask where we could camp. The gal said we could camp wherever we wanted. I asked if she had a recommendation. She showed us a spot near the bath house with nice grass and shade. Yes, we are darn near completely surrounded by RVs (many appear to be here long term), but it's free. Dinner starts in the store at 5:30. We've heard it's pretty good. We need to get more dinner stuff in Greenville tomorrow, so we will "dine out" (or "in" as the case may be) tonight. Maybe we will even eat breakfast there in the morning!
As for the distance today, we thought it would be about 67 miles. Turned out it was only 60, and they were all flat miles (only one very brief hill to get up on the levee road).