NYC to Florida – Day 14

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(picture: cycling through Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge)

Date: 3 May 2011
Woke up in: Bodie Island, Outer Banks, North Carolina
Fell asleep in: Ocracoke, Outer Banks, North Carolina
Miles ridden today: 66
Total miles ridden so far: 729.5
Weather: Sunny. Warmish. And still
got those headwinds

I have a dream, a fantasy really, that one day I’ll get to cycle with a tail, rather than a head, wind. In the meantime, the recent reality has been one of relentless 10-20 mph winds, flying right in my face as we spin out way through the miles.

Thankfully, the landscape we’ve been cycling through today has more than made up for it; the Outer Banks in North Carolina has a very special, wild beauty that reminds me of Cornwall on a blustery spring day… But without the cliffs. And much hotter.

A lot of times today I’ve felt as if I’m in some Eastern Seaboard version of 28 Days Later, cycling for miles along main roads (well, the only road actually – Route 12) without seeing another vehicle or another person. That’s partly because it’s still low season here, but we also have roadworks and ferries to thank. The two combine to ‘group’ the other traffic travelling south into batches. A flurry of 10-20 cars will pass. And then nothing, for up to half an hour at a time. Which is how we found ourselves alone, in the middle of an immense, 2.5 mile long bridge, earlier today. It makes you giggle. Gleefully. It’s a good feeling.

We bumped into two cycle tourers heading north today (with the wind. Lucky buggers); a man from Northern Ireland who was headed to Nova Scotia and a woman from Thailand, who was coming from Key West. We stopped in the middle of the deserted highway for five minutes to swap notes and tales and then headed off in our opposite directions, them to the north, us to the pub. After a 306 mile stint, it was time for a rest day.

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About silkakt

I'm a map addict. I nip out in my lunch break to go to the National Map Centre, just around the corner from where I work, to feed my habit. My fix normally costs £7.99 and comes in the form of an OS map, although I'm a big fan of Sustrans cycle maps, the Trailblazer walking guides and maps of the world too. And once I've got my new map, I start plotting - routes, adventures and an escape away from the office that I spend too much time in. Maps, quite simply, make the world a better and more exciting place.
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