|Panorama looking NE on a climb just north of Paoli|
At this point I think we were still dry, but the pics reflect heavy skies. Although we were only at 18m in Paoli, it was the only logical lunch stop, so stop we did, but not before rolling around the town square with its old-school town center. Someone made the suggestion of Super Burger, which I'm pretty sure the other three made work of- burgers. I wasn't feeling very well, nor riding very either, so I made work of two grilled cheeses. Timothy and Asher missed the turn (a little too far ahead of the gps holders) at Belle Ford Rd; they received the punishment of an extra climb on busy 150 and Dave and I received the bonus of another rest.
The next portion of the day was one of rain and hills. The rains finally opened up somewhere in there, really right around the time Timothy broke a chain. At some point Dave and I were hiding under his foam bag pad. The steady coolish wet combined with incessant hills, some rolling, some climbs, really sucked the life out of me personally. We eventually pulled into Marengo and had a long stop there, first buying snacks and drinks along with a little beer and ice (dry-bag) for our campsite and then a pizza across the street. I'm pretty sure I took a nap in the pizza parlor.
|Darkness descending along Belle Ford Rd.|
|Next to Blue River|
Somehow, the 10 miles outside Marengo changed the course of the day, literally, physically, and for me spiritually. OK, that's a little dramatic. The rains continued, along with the temp in the upper 60s. It was cool and I was the only one to bring a rain jacket. Doh! So, within the 10m after Marengo we faced the twin killer of Depot Hill (not one depot hill but two) where we raced and mostly beat a tractor, at least on the downhill. I hit 44mph on the Depot downhill. Interspersed were numerous little climblets along the Blue River before hitting another substantial climb of around 1 mile climbing out of the river valley. It was at that point that Dave brought up that he was soaked, his sleeping bag was soaked, and he was prepared to detour to Corydon for a hotel stay instead of a miserable wet tent night. Asher agreed enthusiastically. I approached the detour with trepidation because I couldn't get lost. I had to just finish this day. And Timothy wanted to camp because it was a camping trip.
We briefly discussed the pro's and con's and decided to trust Dave's gps and follow its short-cut to Corydon and skip the last night's camp. We immediately found intrigue when our through-road was gravel and downhill. After a brief discussion with a motorist as to whether it went through, we barreled down Rothrocks Mill Rd., ironically my favorite road of the trip. What we found was a combo of deep, shaded forest, gravel and a slight descent which later became significant as we head towards the Blue River. The Troll was firmly in its element here and I divebombed down, giving myself some time to stop and catch "action shots" of my comrades. What a gorgeous road!
|Troll in its element.|
We got out comeuppance at the bottom when we faced the steepest climbs of the day coming out of the valley. We also picked up a friend who shepherded us for miles. After the fun of the river valley, we eventually found ourselves back on more standard country roads, eventually on 337 with its narrow shoulders, taking us into north Corydon and to a Holiday Inn Express. I was too tired to drink very much of the beer I had carried for 25m, and too tired to even watch TV. We had a snack at Culver's and went to bed by 10. A long sometimes miserable day, but a memorable one.
|Dave's feet aren't look too hot, or are they?|