DAY 39

April 22, 1999

My GAWD! That was a bad storm last night. It rained really hard and the lightning must have been right over my head. Just before the lightning would strike, I could feel a tingling sensation all over, then BAM! I’m blinded by a bright flash followed immediately by thunder. There was no delay at all so I knew it was very close. I could feel the sonic vibrations go through me and could feel them in the ground. What an incredible sensation! I think my heart skipped a beat each time it happened.

When I woke up, it was still raining a little, so I waited. After the rain stopped, I took a shower then got everything together. I waited until the last moment to take down my tent, hoping it would get dry…..And yes, it was dry. Before leaving, I stopped at the office to pay my $5.00. They informed me that there were no stores close by to buy my Gatorade. Ahhhh, that sucks. But the guy was cool and drove down to the marina where they have a small store. I followed on my bike and bought 3 PowerAde’s. Great, now I’m good to go! He also looked at my map and gave me good directions using back roads towards the next State Park.

Heading out of the park, I had to turn south on 7 (into headwinds) for about 3 miles then I turned west on the first paved road. It was unnamed but a small section of it turned into 146. I followed the road to its end and then headed north on the road it terminated on. This is Elk Road and it heads into Chanute. By that time, I had been biking in heavy rain for about and hour and I was miserable. So I stopped at the first motel I saw, the Safari Inn, and paid 42.39 for a room. Basically, this day sucked. Up until the town of Walnut it wasn’t too bad, just a lot of crosswind. At Walnut I sopped at a small gas station/restaurant called Boots and Saddles. There I was able to order a grilled chicken sandwich….that was a first! Most small Podunk places like that have breaded and deep-fried chicken.

It was right after Walnut that the winds got stronger and I wondered if they would have "Tornado Crossing" signs. The wind was followed by the crappy rain :-(

Today - 43.69 miles
Total -  1996 miles
Avg. Speed - 10mph

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