Day 39 on the Southern Tier Route

A daylong tail wind. Thankfully, last night didn't turn out to be as cold as I expected. I awoke at 6:30, ate breakfast of granola and chocolate milk, packed up and biked a quarter mile to a convenience store. A ate a breakfast sandwich at a Hardee's as a second breakfast. About 7:30, I headed southeast on Fl Hwy 100 with a first-class shoulder and a brisk tail wind. For 23 miles to Lake Butler, I rode past pine plantations and oak forests but no rural homes. After that, the pine plantations and oak forests continued but rural homes appeared. I saw lakes here and there through the trees. I reached Starke at 37 miles on the day and continued riding for another 14 miles to Keystone Heights where I ate lunch on the front porch of the local electric cooperative. Onward on Hwy 100 still with a headwind and a smooth road shoulder toward Palatka, my destination for the day. Past Carraway, I stopped at a sign for the Florida Trail, which runs from south Florida to Georgia (see photo). The trail I could see from the road appeared to be minimally defined. I reached Palatka at 2 pm, having biked 77 miles in 6.5 hours thanks to the tail wind and the smooth shoulder. That's as fast as I recall ever biking. I treated myself to a night at the Quality Inn the banks of the St. John's River. Tomorrow I'll finish the trip in St. Augustine!

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