Monday, August 18, 2014

Epic Ride and Beach Time

 Strava Link: HERE

We saved our money for a while and finally had enough to make the trek down to the beach.  We loaded up and headed to Charleston and then north to Buck Hall Rec Area.  I had actually planned ahead and made reservations at the campground there.  We pulled up to our campsite and started to unload when things went downhill.  The kid started running to the van screaming that something was biting him.  I looked down and saw no less than 10 mosquitoes had landed on my skin.  The wife was slapping the ones that were attacking her.  We retreated to the bathhouse then reconvened back at the van.  We decided to donate the cost of our reserved campsite and hunt   down an affordable hotel. 

Through the course of eating dinner, we found Comfort Suites in Mt Pleasant.  While the rate was not what I would call affordable,  we decided to go for it and stay at least one night.  Our budget would be blown but we were at the beach and we were determined to enjoy it. 

After moving into the room we headed out to the beach to watch the sunset. After we got back to the hotel.  We were so pleased with how we were being treated, and how clean and comfortable our room was, that we ended up committing to stay 3 nights. 
 The next morning, I met Low Country Joe for a tour of The Francis Marion National Forest.  This is his description of the 3 hr ride that turned into a 6 hr epic: "Asheville Jane"s was in town and had a little free time to go on a ride into the Francis Marion with me....what was supposed to be a 3 hour ride turned into a 6+ hour adventure....complete with me locking up, near bonk, and exhausting my water supply 1 hour from the end.... crazy day....did I mention I was rolling the Krampus? was a tough day but it was fun!"

As the temps climbed towards the mid 90's Joel was having a rough time.  But what he did not mention in his post was that he had been out past midnite the night before, riding 50 + miles and working on his set up for the upcoming Trans North Ga Race!   
 I on the other hand had a great ride and was able to manage the  heat well.  The stop at the gas station for some Coke and ham and cheese sammy, with ice cream sandwiches was a nice touch.  If you head to Charleston, I recommend getting in touch with Joel for a guided trip!
 The rest of the days went well.  Typical beach stuff.  Waves, sand, sunburn, fun family time.
 We headed to the beach after dinner every night.  Dinner one of those nights was hot dogs and baked bean on the Coleman stove in the hotel parking lot.  You do what you gotta do! 
 On the way home, we took the scenic route so we could see a couple bits of the Palmetto Trail.  We rode the dike around Lake Marion.  The temps were around 95 so we lasted about 4 miles,  did not see any alligators.  We hit the ice cream stand in Eutawville and the closed bridge in Santee. 
Can't wait to get back down there!

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