Day 025 – Sealevel, NC to Jacksonville, NC
I got up really early today and was on the road by 7 pm because I knew I had a lot of ground to cover if I wanted to make Charleston, SC by Friday to meet up with my friend Matt.
I’ve seen 7 touring cyclist so far going north and we always wave and today I actually stopped and chatted with Jake for a little bit about what he could expect going North and he suggested I deviate from the ACA maps and go through Beaufort and along the Crystal Coast. He had just gotten back to the states after living in Brazil for 10 years and was on a trip to figure out what his next focus in life was going to be. I understand that motivation 🙂
I stopped for lunch at the end of the Crystal Coast. There was a crab shack place I saw that I really should of stopped at, but didn’t so had to settle for a restaurant inside of an open air mall. It was nice and I spoke to a guy at the bar for a while and downed a plate of pasta and some cheese fries while looking at how much further I had to go. I wanted to get past Jacksonville, maybe all the way to Wilmington, but it was going to tough. I noticed that there was a road (172) through the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune and even though it was restricted to military use only I biked up to the gate and asked if I could get through. The young man holding the gun apologized, but said I would have to turn around. It was 7 miles out of my way, but since the camp is 246 square miles I thought it was worth trying to go through instead of around it.
I ended up taking 24 to Jacksonville, which was another busy road and the hot day long miles were starting to pile up. I realized at a gas station that somewhere along the way I sheared one of two bolts off the bar that connects the trailer arm to the trailer frame of my trailer. I thought this was going to happen so I thought to pack hose clamps with me, but didn’t think it would happen this fast. I found a Lowes and spent the next two hours fixing it. I decided to replace both bolts with ones that were much stronger. I think over the next 5000 miles it will happen again because of the way it is designed. The tailer is meant to be foldable for storage so the railer arm tube rests on top of the frame tube with the bolts running through the middle of each tube holding them together. Every time I go over a bump tubes roll a small amount forwards and backwards putting lateral stress on the bolts.
I also lost of my bike gloves. My hands sweat so much (actually my whole body) that I take the gloves off and fasten them to my break lines on the from of the bike so the wind will dry them out. My right hand one decide to leave me, which really sucks because they were $50 gloves 🙁 At least I can Michael Jackson it for a little bit.
Once I got out of Jacksonville I needed to find a camp ground because it was 8:00 and the sun was gone. I asked the oracle (iPhone Google map) where one was and got there. The office was closed, but I was able to each someone off site and get a spot. So thankful. After 97 miles in 95 degree heat I was beat and ready for a shower and a chance to do laundry.