Saturday, April 18, 2015

Our 7th State, Alabama!

Loren and Dave 82 miles.
We woke up to wet pavement but it wasn't actively raining. We headed out into a weak sunshine. Because it was so humid I needed to take my sunglasses off because they fogged up on me.
The route was flatter than yesterday which was good for us. This was our first long day we were able to ride together since our various injuries started acting up.
We went over the Pascagoula River and along a delta of the river which was swollen to flood stage. The Passagoula River is the largest (by volume) undammed river in the 48 states. I saw three campgrounds that were under water! We were worried about our destination, Dauphin Island, which is low lying and looked like it was receiving torrents of rain.

We stopped for a picture at the Alabama state line.

Just after we took this picture it started to pour. You haven't lived until you are riding down a hill at 22 mph with raindrops pelting your eyeballs! My Coast to Coast Tyvek raincoat actually seems to do better at not getting all wet inside of it than my Goretex but it balloons out like a Pillsbury dough boy since the air runs up my sleeves in my recumbent position. Water also collects by my elbows so I would have to empty them out periodically!
We stopped at a gas station for subs. We were sopping wet and cold with the air conditioning while we were standing and waiting for the subs to be made. We went outside to stand to get warm in the humid air. 
By the time we left the rain stopped and after that it was a beautiful day. My clothing dried out quite quickly.
The land flattened out and we began to have a tailwind so the miles went fairly quickly. 
Above is our first view of the Mobile Bay estuary and shrimp boats.
The Pascagoula River at flood stage.
Just before starting over the Dauphin Island  bridge. I had heard there were crosswinds on the bridge but they turned out to be more like tailwinds. I also didn't feel nervous being up so high because there were tall sidewalls and the shoulder was wide.

I had to go up the hump in the bridge in my granny gear, but the ride down the other side was nice!

Rest Day April 18, Dauphin Island 
Unfortunately our rest day dawned with rain but we have a nice pavilion. This area receives rain in amounts second only to Seattle. We've managed to dodge a lot of it even though there has been a strong weather system that is stalled down in the south.
Dave and I walked over and visited an estuarium describing the marine life in the area with some neat exhibits. I touched a sting ray in a tank, (kind of slimy). The rain may stop later, there is also a bird sanctuary nearby.
A stingray.
A Cloud Jellyfish 
The underside of a stingray.
We are on the Gulf of Mexico.

Our beautiful tent site under a live oak. Unfortunately it's raining.

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