November 9, 2009


What a great couple of days. After hitting the road out of Hampton VA, I have had 3 flats, 2 hellish bridges, and a 40 mile day!
1st flat. Got it about 10 miles from Ennis house at the beginning of the James River Bridge. I had used my spare tube earlier and had to call a bike shop that was about 1.5 miles from the James River Bridge to come and bring me a couple tubes and a new pump mine had broken that day. The guy came and helped me change the tire out and I was on my way.
1st bridge. That was the James River Bridge. This Bridge is about 4.5 miles long about a mile in is a climb to the draw bridge part. I tried to inquire about a shuttle service or something along the lines as a friendly lift. None to be had. So we did what we always do just pedal our way over. About a half mile in a car came up behind us and told me I need to pull over to the side right before the draw and he was going to call me a tow. So I did as I was told and 15 min later there was a flatbed pulling up to give me a lift. All paid for by the great state of VA! After we unloaded the Rick and talked to a cop about what we where doing we where back to the push of the pedals.
After that we had good riding thru the rest of VA on our way to NC. Once we got past Suffolk VA, we where in some pretty big swampy area referred to as the Great Dismal Swamps. It is pretty dismal. Camping was a lot harder due to the fact that all the wooded area was mostly in the swamp so we found ourselves camping behind old rundown abandoned houses and one night slept next to a old gas station that was now a church. Price of gas was still on the sign at $1.73 a gallon but the sign on the building was for the church. The beginning of NC we had a couple nights of frost and developed a lot of condensation in the tent, luckily I got the tent and most of my supplies at REI and they sent me a new tent for free! Thanks REI for supporting people and their adventures.
After we got into NC, we got out second flat on the other back tire. We rode for about half a mile before I saw a car in a driveway and a lady working in the yard, I stopped to ask if I could use her car jack so I could change this back tire with ease. She said yes and kept Coop occupied while I changed the flat all done in less than 30 min. Back on the road.
As we neared the Outer Banks we got out of the swamps and closer to the shore. After the night outside the Church Gas Station we decided to do a 45 plus mile day. We hit the road bright and early and where making good time. Until...
...we hit the 2nd hellish bridge. This wasn't a long bridge but it was a big climb with no shoulder. I had taken pics of this bridge and decent but am unable to find the card. It took about 4 min for me to hike up this bridge and about 1 min to come down. After that we went about another 20 some miles before getting our third and final flat of this leg. Luckily we had been able to make a hook up thru Dolly for a surfer friend of hers that lived down in Nags. Luckily he had a big ol truck and was able to come and pick us up with his friend John and give us a lift the rest of the way in to his house. He and his girl have a guest cottage in the back that Coop and I had all to ourselves. The next day we woke up early and got to the beach.
I wanted to give surfing a try but the waves where a little to big for me so I stuck to body boarding. I only did it for about 30. min or so, the waves were really starting to pick up and I wanted to get some good pictures of the surfers.
The next hour or so I ran up and down the beach to different beach front houses to climb their multilevel decks to capture these great locals shredding and riding the barrels. I took over 1,200 pictures and they all turned out great. Afterward we ate some food and headed to another beach to do some more surfing and picture taking. It was a great day of great waves beautiful weather and new friends. Off to bed I luckily got some work the following day.
After finding Johns house I got to it doing some landscaping work he had a couple of paver paths that had become over grown with weeds and beach grass with sand burrs. It took a couple hours and when John got home we took the dogs to the beach and he grabbed his stand up paddle board. Raglan Johns black lab is a 2 yr old big goof ball. Cooper and him got along great, and gave me a lot of great shots. Watch John out on the calm water with the sun setting behind us was a great sight. I will be coming back here during the summer months once this trip is over. The rain started the next day. And hasn't stopped!
The beach across the street from where I am staying is rapidly getting eaten away from all the wind and water. I have never seen anything like this. I went out there last night during high tide and the stairs going down from the pier we were standing on where getting water up to the 3rd step or so and today when I went back over there during low tide the stairs where completely gone! Just a 15 foot drop to the beach. There was also a house not to far from here that the stilts got washed out from under it and it fell to the beach. Mother nature is a amazing bitch!
I want to leave Saturday but its looking like we won't taking off till Sunday there are some roads that have water or sand blocking them.

Till next time
Love and Licks from the road
Sean and Cooper.

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