Bicycle Journey Progress

The journey begins on April 5th and ends on June 20, 2012

Ride Progress: COMPLETE!
Daily summaries:

domingo, 6 de maio de 2012

Summary of days 26 and 27

Day 26 – 04/28/2012 – Mount Ida, AR

This day we were very tired. Our bodies were broken from the previous day’s long and hard course. So we decided to ride just about 40 miles. The next city on the distance was a place called Mount Ida, which we knew nothing about.

Before leaving we had to cross the city we were in, Hot Springs, AR. In the previous day we couldn’t see it well due to the fact we got there late at night and stopped right on the entrance, but now during the day things were clear. Right when we went off the hotel we started seeing closed businesses and old buildings. There were many closed hotels. The main one, called Majestic, encompassed three full blocks and had about eight stories. Closed for a long time it looked like coming out straight from a horror movie.

But the bad impressions ended there. As we approached the main avenue we started seeing many small shops and coffee houses. We stopped our bicycles on a cupcake store and had a nice coffee while we watched the people walking in the streets. Everyone was friendly and polite and the streets were very clean.

After drinking our coffees we moved on and cross the downtown area, which was very busy. Many small shops and bathing houses were lined up on both sides of the Central Avenue. Later we read that the city was initially formed by people seeking the medicinal properties of the many springs located in that region. The springs pour water in temperatures up to 143 F. Before the colonial period, even Native Americans used to come searching for these springs. The history of the place had many chapters, including being a strategic point during in the Civil War. Now its golden age seems to have passed and the city seemed to be decreasing in its size. But still, that was an amazing place to visit.

The path to Mount Ida was full of long hills, which made the way hard to go through, but we had time and that helped. We covered the distance in about 7 hours going very slowly and watching the nature of the Ouachita National Forest.

The hotel was also a pleasant surprise. We found a very nice place that was very affordable too. We then went out to get food on a nearby supermarket and came back to have dinner and prepare to sleep.

Day 27 – 04/29/2012 – Mena, AR

Mount Ida was a small city, just a few houses and gas stations. Once we left the hotel we stopped to get some water, and then started the ride. However, we had a disagreement on the final destination for that day. Since both of us felt strongly about what we were proposing that caused some conflict.

I can say that, at least for me, that pretty much ruined the day. My uncle was riding very slowly and, although we’ve been most of the day on the road, we ended up covering just about 42 miles that day.

The path was still crossing the Ouachita National Forest and there was very little population along the way. We were surrounded by the forest and by farms until we reached the city we were going to spend the night, Mena, still in Arkansas. There we found a small hotel that had vacancy and did everything we could to go sleep as early as possible.