Second Day, Riding from Celo Inn to Marion. NC - Testing my aging body and a new two battery setup on my V-Rex - CycleBlaze

April 5, 2022

Second Day, Riding from Celo Inn to Marion. NC

I started the day by switching to bike's second battery. Last night I realized, when I went to remove my bike's  battery  that I'd forgotten to bring the key I needed to remove it. I had made the silly assumption  that my bike would spend it night's in my motel rooms and I would charge it there. At the Celo Inn my bike was in a sheltered shed where bikes were kept, and that area has no place to plug in a charger. My room was on the second floor but even getting to the first floor with my heavy bike would have been quite difficult! Another time that having  two batteries made my life simpler!

This day was short, the routing was simple: head south on NC 8o to US 70, then turn left and ride to the Budget Inn on US 70. That motel is  a few miles east of where NC80 ends on US 70.  Today's route, which Google Maps describes as "Mostly Flat" has about 2000 feet of climbing , mostly as NC 80 climbs to the Blue Ridge Parkway, followed by a really steep descent to  the foot of the mountains. The upper part of that descent is one of the steepest roads in the state. The Parkway crossing on NC 80 is marked as on the Eastern Continental Divide!

Because of the  rain, I re-loaded my bike after a good breakfast and then, following the Weather channel forecast for lighter rain in Burnsville after 11 AM, waited to leave until just before 11. One of the several important things I forgot to bring on this tour was my rain pants, but I didn't really need them until after I got on US 70 about 1 PM. 

The ride up to the Parkway was fine, with a few parts of NC 80 being almost dry. The ride down starts with the steepest part of NC 80 has lots of 20 mph switchbacks. The road was wet so I did not exceeded that speed until I reached the flatter parts about  half way down where I could coast comfortably at over 30 mph.

After I turned east on US 70, I rode into, and out of, several areas of moderate rainfall. My rain Jacket kept my upper body  dry and comfortable, but the legs on my nickers got wet.   After I checked into the Budget Host Motel, where I had stayed on at least one earlier tour,  I walked, in light rain across US 70 to the nearby  Bar-B-que Hut and ordered a barbecue plate with a small coke. I waited at their rain sheltered eating area for them to fix my food and, when I literally picked it up, was very impressed by the fact that it weighed several pounds!

Yesterday in Celo, I'd improvised supper from my  snack supplies so I was really hungry today and the large barbecue plate - barbecue, fries, and slaw - was most  welcome. It also meant that I didn't need any supper today!

US 70 in Marion has no provision for walking, so I stayed  in my room after lunch. I napped, read parts several good e-books and got to bed about 10 PM. I slept much better than last night because I hadn't had any coffee today. 

Today's ride: 25 miles (40 km)
Total: 70 miles (113 km)

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