Day 13 - Elkhorn, KY to Hindman, KY - Can('t) Hurt Me - CycleBlaze

May 25, 2021

Day 13 - Elkhorn, KY to Hindman, KY

Four waves of covid

We left the city hall building around 8 and didn't run into any coal trucks on the way out.

Some locals said that they will build roads and sometimes find coal. They use that money to pay for the road. This is a map of all the coal mines in the town.
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The locals and the mayor were already outside waiting. They said they were looking for a black bear that comes up to the building. Today was supposed to be fairly easy with only four mountain passes (the 4 waves) and 60 some miles. It was extremely humid but the first mountain pass wasn't so hard. The next two were really tough. It was also a good glimpse into poor Appalachian life. The scenery was pretty but covered with trash. The creek we followed up the pass was stocked with cans, clothing, tires, and more. The houses were falling apart. On one of the four mountain passes, a hunting dog was loose; it hid in the bushes ahead of us and hopped out to bark and chase us. Unfortunately we were going like 4 mph and had to make sure he wouldn't bite.

Typical western Appalachian trash dump at the mountain gap
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We passed tons of people on non-street legal ATVs. On one highway an 8 year old was flying past us on a dirt bike with a smaller child on the back. They must have been going 45 with no helmets or shoes even. Back in Virginia I felt like I could stop basically anywhere, but here the people are barely trying to survive.

Typical Appalachian view
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We pedalled past the last of the four passes and coasted along to hindman in the heat. We stopped before town to go to the grocery. A few days ago I tried to get us all a stay at a hostel, but they are still closed for covid. They referred us to a church where could sleep on the pews. We arrived at the church and the pastor's wife let us in. The place was huge with a giant basement equipped with a kitchen, the upstairs was the old church area now modified for a stage with couches and a bathroom and shower area. They even had a washer and dryer. We cooked spaghetti and chilled until sleep time. We were all really tired. The couches were a comfy sleep. The town of hindman had some cool Appalachian craft/history shops, but they were closed by the time we got there. We went to sleep around 9. We didn't know how to turn the AC down so it was nice and cool.

Basement with kitchen not pictured.
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Upstairs of youth center
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Altitude gain:4100

Gonna try to upload pics later with wifi. Maybe in Berea.

Today's ride: 63 miles (101 km)
Total: 632 miles (1,017 km)

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