On Wednesday morning, we got a late start leaving from Lums Pond. It wasn’t that we had an intention of leaving at any particular time and missed it. Instead, we slept in and were moving slow, plus I took some pictures at the lake and it took some time for our laundry to finish drying in the morning sun.
We also had a delicious breakfast.
At first, we thought we’d head for Blackbird State Forest, which was only an estimated 15 miles or so away. That seemed like too little–maybe an hour or two of riding. However, we weren’t sure about our other options, since we had exhausted the directions that Terry and Louise had printed out. A high priority for what was left of the morning was finding a place to get on the internet to find new routes and destinations.
We cycled south and by noon had reached Middletown. We could tell that spring has already been to this part of Delaware. The trees are budding and flowering. There are full scale daffodils blooming.
By 11 am, it was clearly going to be a hot day. Like 80 degrees and more. And all my cycling shorts are in the pile of summer clothes to be shipped to us later. Since the library in Middletown wasn’t open, so we searched Goodwill (unsuccessfully) for replacement clothes and ate lunch, biding our time until the library opened at 1 pm. A Canadian cyclist walking by suggested we get a Maryland recreational cycling map.
After looking at our options, Blackbird was only 8 more miles, but it was a state forest, so campsites would have no bathrooms or running water. We decided we didn’t want to spend an afternoon there, and would rather keep riding, which meant we needed to ride 40 more miles before dark to reach Killens Pond State Park.
By the end, we made it before dark, but we were both exhausted.
Even so, I have to say that this has been my favorite day of riding so far. Partially, it was just that the extreme hills of central PA and Maryland have transformed into gently rolling hills the closer we have move toward the coast. We hardly ever had to walk our bikes up hills in Delaware. The major roads on our route had ample shoulders or designated bike lanes, and that makes a huge difference. And we also got to travel some scenic back roads, through the Amish country of Delaware and past fruit orchards.
Despite the heat, I wore long pants and full cycling sleeves to protect myself from the sun. Elizabeth got burnt on her arms and legs. She also got a migraine, and when right to the shower and to bed once we got to camp.
Since we had a 50+ mile day, we decided to stay at Killens a second day and let ourselves recover. It was a good idea since the temperature reached record highs on Wednesday–we think in the upper 80s or lower 90s. We only rode about 10 miles, into town to get groceries.