Day 31: To Branson - Steel City to Cow Town 2014 - CycleBlaze

October 9, 2014

Day 31: To Branson

65F and foggy in the morning. I left the motel in Ava at 8:45. It was very foggy for the first 45 minutes. Kind of spooky, but the light became increasingly bright and cheery as the fog dissipated.

Beautiful glow as the fog dissipates.
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I'm still on MO 76 but it has more traffic now. 5 times the highway climbs a big hill, then drops 300 feet to a stream crossing. The first 3 stream crossings were Beaver creek. Then Bull Shoals lake and Lake Taneycomo.

Fall foliage along another clear creek.
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I enjoyed seeing occasional fall foliage. It's just getting started. Scenery was pretty good but the traffic was annoying.

Looking up at the hills.
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Looking down from a hilltop.
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Today I saw mostly General Baptist churches. Also a Church of the Nazarene, Anglican church, and a Jehovah's Witnesses Kingdom Hall.

I still see the occasional limestone cut.
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The afternoon was very warm and humid. High of 85F. I had difficulty operating my rear grip shifter because it was coated in oily sweat.

Looking north towards the highest part of the Ozark Plateau.
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Traffic was especially heavy for the last 10 miles to Branson. The area is much more populated now.

Lake Taneycomo, near Branson, Missouri.
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Lake Taneycomo and Branson Landing.
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After crossing Lake Taneycomo MO 76 climbs steeply into Branson. I arrived at 4 PM and got a room at Garden Inn. $89 for 2 nights, but I will probably stay a 3rd night. The room has a fridge and microwave.

I had a gentle tailwind for most of the day. The terrain is still hilly but I can handle it. I enjoyed the hilltop views and early fall foliage. Overall, a good day.

My plan was to ride to Eureka Springs tomorrow and take a rest day there. But the weather isn't cooperating. Heavy rain is predicted for the next 2 days, so I will wait 2 days in Branson and not have a rest day in Eureka Springs.

Distance: 57.1 mi. (91 km)
Climbing: 3156 ft. (956 m)
Average Speed: 10.9 mph (17.4 km/h)

Today's ride: 57 miles (92 km)
Total: 1,579 miles (2,541 km)

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