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Friday, May 20, 2016

The Last 200 Yards - From my Point of View

Running out of Road

Ran out of Road - Dipping of the wheel.
Finally ran out of road. The traditional dipping of the wheel - in my case both wheels and both feet - in the Atlantic. Cal and the local Hilton Head Island Biking ambassador were there to help me get un-stuck.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Alligators for real

1 mile to go

Spanish Wells Road Bike Path

Only 6 miles to go

Second Bridge

First was too dangerous to stop at and feel safe. This is crazy traffic!

Finally - A dedicated bike path

At mile 11... a dedicated bike lane. First concession made for cyclists that I've encountered since I left home. These rich folks sure know how to do it right. 278 to this point was terrible - like I 75 with no shoulder.

Day 10 - Hardeeville to Hilton Head SC - 30.3 miles

A Snob
Finally, I found a use for the hair dryers they have in the hotel bathrooms. I just used it to dry my shoes out from yesterday's rain ride. It is a welcomed irony that the last day of a mostly mountainous ten day trek is the shortest and flattest ride of the entire journey. 30.3 miles of of the most prostrate terrain you could hope for. Weather forecast couldn't be better. Overcast and only a 15% chance of rain.  Mid-ride, at mile 13, I will hit a 1.3% grade that climbs to 28 ft above sea level (Big Deal!). From there, it's all downhill until I eventually arrive in Hilton Head at 9 ft above sea level. There will be lots of traffic the closer I get to Hilton Head. I have posted a Google Earth Video of Day 10 on YouTube. I tried to get fancy and go from sky view to street view and back. I think it really confused the Google Earth Movie Maker though. So in spite of a few hiccups, it's a pretty good view of my path into Hilton Head. Keep in mind that YouTube tends to drop videos down to low-res. All my videos are in high definition, so you may need to change the default resolution in the YouTube player to HD. Notice the four lane US Highway 278 all the way in and all of the shopping centers along the entire 30 miles.
A Bridge

[Check Out Last Years Trip to Panama City]

Hilton Head ranks as the second snobbiest place in South Carolina.  It’s so snobby it actually has a moat around itself to keep the common folk out. Approximately 70% of the island, including most of the tourist areas, is located inside gated communities.  Median Household Income: $70,041 -  Median Home Price: $477,100.  Rumor has it that there is a snobby tourist test you have to take in order to gain entrance to the island. Today's short ride will mostly be on four lane US Highway 278. East of Interstate 95, 278 runs as the main artery into posh Hilton Head. It's all new, green and manicured. You know a road has arrived when it has a bunch of official names. This 30 mile stretch of US Highway 278 starts out as Independence Boulevard, then becomes Fording Island Road, then changes to William Hilton Parkway followed by Cross Island Parkway, followed by Palmetto Bay Road, and ending as Pope Avenue. On previous days I traveled 278 West of Interstate 95 and it was the ugly twin of the eastern side. On the western side, it was mostly two lane and not very pretty. Hopefully, the parade of Mercedes-Benzes, Bentleys, Audis and Land Rovers heading from I-95 into Hilton Head will be well behaved, unlike their logging trucker cousins.
The End
I will pick up a dedicated Bike Lane on Cross Island Parkway (aka US Hwy 278) - the last of three major four lane bridges that I will cross today. I plan to arrive at Coligny Circle at Coligny Beach Park. I like big traffic circles. This has been a crazy ride. All manner of terrain - from the Georgia mountains to the Low Country swamps. I've met a lot of people. Most notably, the gay son with aids who was taking care of his mother and Shirley, who owns and runs a little country store in Furman SC. She lives behind the store in the house she grew up in. Her mom and dad ran it and now that they have passed, she carries on. She's about my age and works 11 hours per day, by herself. One pump, soft drinks and a few groceries. Go Shirley.