Day 17 Georgetown, SC - Two Far 2019 - Coasting Along to the Maritimes - CycleBlaze

May 11, 2019

Day 17 Georgetown, SC

A metric century

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Today was our longest ride to date - 62.5 miles.  It went quickly.  We had beautiful weather and a tailwind and some good cycling roads.

We left early (for us) at 8:30.  The traffic leaving Mt. Pleasant was very light.  We were on residential roads most of the way out of town.  

We were on Rifle Range Road for several miles leaving Mt. Pleasant. It was a pleasant ride.
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Our first stop was at the Sewee Outpost store.  It turned out to be the hub for Charleston county cyclists on Saturday morning.  There were a bunch of cyclists entering and leaving the whole time we were there.  We must have passed at least 30 cyclists, mostly in groups, after leaving the store.

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We had drinks and snacks at the store, but passed on these snacks at the register.

They're the real thing!
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This is the road where we passed the most cyclists. It was beautiful to ride.
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We spent about 30 miles on US 17 today. This stretch is in Charleston County. It was nice - but read on.
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There were tons of white herons in these trees.
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Coming into Georgetown, we crossed first the South Santee River, then the North Santee River.  They looked very much alike.

The South Santee River
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The North Santee River
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In Georgetown, we visited the Rice Museum.  It was OK - nothing special, but they did have on display a colonial vessel discovered in the Black River upstream from Georgetown in 1971.  It is called the "Brown's Ferry Vessel" after it's location when found.  It is the oldest colonial vessel recovered in the southeast, believed to have been built about 1700 and sunk between 1730-1740.  

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The Rice Museum had a video about the history of rice production in Georgetown County.  It was the major rice producing county in the United States through most of the 1800's. Though slavery was acknowledged,   we were dismayed and disheartened to listen to the film's narrator refer to the enslaved population of the county as "laborers" and bemoan the fact that after the "War Between the States", the rice planters were not compensated for the loss of their "laborers".  It was truly disgusting to hear.  I wasn't sure about adding this, but it's an important part of today that we will remember.  That's what the blog should contain. - Jeanna

Today's ride, while long, went by quickly thanks to a great tailwind.  For the most part, there was nothing special to see, but the ride was pleasant nonetheless.  We did see signs for a couple of plantations, but they were a a few miles off our route, so we did not make the detour.   I did enjoy meeting the cyclists (and talking about bike gear) at the Sewee Outpost.  

After we had checked in to our hotel and were walking to the nearby convenience store for our nightly Diet Coke fix , we met our first touring cyclist.  Gary Katuin left Lake Helen, FL on April 16th, and is taking a 5-6 week "Ramble up the Atlantic Coast".   We chatted for a few minutes, and when we got back to our room, I read about his adventure on Crazy Guy on a Bike.  It was interesting to read because he had been to so many of the same places we had.  


One would think that the standards for a US Route (think US-17)  would be national standards,  and not vary by state.  One would be wrong.  

Having just established that there are no national standards, one might reasonably assume that there are state-level standards for national routes.  Again one would be wrong.  

It appears that the standards for national (and state) routes are set at the county level.  Today was a perfect example of this.  

Leaving Charleston, we had a great shoulder on US-17, as long as we were in Charleston County.  As soon as we crossed the South Santee River and entered Georgetown County, the shoulder went to hell.   We went from a nice wide shoulder to a narrow shoulder with a wide rumble strip.   The rumble strip took up all but about 8" of the shoulder and there at least a 3" drop from the asphalt  to the grass.  Needless to say, we were forced to ride in the 60 MPH traffic lane.  The saving grace  was: 

1) The traffic was fairly light.

2)  Jeanna did a great job of keeping her eyes glued to the mirror and warning me when the traffic did not move over (which was infrequent).

3) The bad shoulder only lasted for about 8 miles.

Enough - Kerry

Today's ride: 63 miles (101 km)
Total: 578 miles (930 km)

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