We’ll begin with the setting for our last rest day of the tour. Behind our tent is a pathway that leads to the beach.
We enjoy a restful night of sleep and get up for sunrise.
The location of Dauphin Island (on Mobile Bay) is especially cool because from the same spot, you can see the sunrise looking out to the east and the sunset looking out to the west! Welcome to the self-proclaimed “sunset capital of Alabama”.
The rest of the perfect weather day consists of a little bike maintenance, a nature walk, and a good amount of hanging out and relaxing.
Today’s ride starts on a ferry, because Bubba thought it would be too difficult to swim across Mobile Bay. Let’s load ’em up and move ’em out.
It’s about a 40-minute ride across the bay, which is dotted with natural gas wells.
Here we are showing our sea legs.
We are wearing our helmets in case we capsize.
We will continue with our story after a quick history lesson. Four hundred years ago, some sunburned French explorers discovered the Gulf Coast near the Florida-Alabama border. They said, “we dedicate this coastline to residents of the south who will come here and build ugly condos and Walmarts, which will make lots of tourism and car traffic.”
Welcome to the “Redneck Riviera”. We are able to find the last patch of sand with no concrete on it.
Speaking of the border, after a cup of coffee in Alabama, we cross our seventh border and enter our eighth and final state, Florida.
Someone needs to turn down the headwind. We feel like we are riding a stationary bike for most of the day over the flat terrain.
Start city: Dauphin Island, AL
End city: Pensacola, FL
Total miles to date: 2442…about 500 to go!
Miles in Alabama: 85
Pedaling time: 3 hours, 53 minutes
Avg. speed: 14.6 mph
Feet climbed: 1025
Fatigue factor: 6 out of 10
Wind: SE 10-20 mph, headwind most of day
Road condition: 5 out of 5
Temperature extremes: 70 at ride start, 80 at ride finish
We have had a lot of friends meet us on the route, and we receive a fun surprise when we get to our hotel today. Chris and Shawn from Atlanta send us a fantastic bottle of beer to welcome us to Florida and congratulate us on the border crossing.
Thanks guys…it was delicious!
Tomorrow: a short ride only gets us a little closer to the Atlantic, but it does bring us some special visitors.
Because he has nothing better to do, Dick Cheney tracks us live: