MO2NO Day 6: Kosciusko, MS to Ridgeland, MS

Since I’d already reserved a hotel room in Ridgeland, I didn’t change my plans, even though I’d ridden 30 miles of what should have been today’s ride yesterday.  I just let this be the short day.  So, I set the alarm clock for 6 AM, since I figured I had time to sleep in a bit, and dawdled around a little getting ready.  Finally I had the trailer all packed, so I took it out on the sidewalk in front of my room, and then brought out the bike, and then… discovered that my back tire was flat.

Not a problem.  I brought two spare tubes.  I took off the wheel, took out the punctured tube, felt around on the inside of the tire until I found a sharp piece of flint that had come through.  I got that out, installed the replacement tube, which has been riding around in my underseat bag for ages, and started inflating it.  Hmmm.  Can’t get the CO2 pump to work.  Tried a new cylinder — I brought spares.  Still won’t work.  Damn.  Okay, I have a hand pump also, so I pumped up the tire.  Pssssssssssssssssssst….

Yeah, the spare tube had a leak.  I took it out and put in the OTHER spare tube.  Then I pumped it up with the hand pump, put the wheel back on, went in and washed grease off myself, repacked the trailer (that’s where the second spare tube was), and got on the road.  8:04 AM.

The trip down the Trace was uneventful; I’ve ridden most of this section before, in the Natchez Trace Century.  At one stop I was looking at some of the Old Trace when a group of motorcyclists pulled up.  They were very interested in my bike and trailer, and wanted to know about the clipless pedals, and so on.  We had a nice chat; they were also going to New Orleans, but I think they’re likely to beat me.

I got to Ridgeland (a suburb of Jackson) about 1 PM, and pulled up to the Comfort Suites.  I stayed there last March for the Natchez Trace Century, and I’d made a reservation for a 1st floor room a month ago.  Naturally, this gets you nothing.  They were full, and the manager asked me if I could possibly go to the Comfort _Inn_ just down the road, owned by the same company.  Being a good sport, I agreed.  Okay, I was grumpy, but I agreed.  He assured me that it was 1/4 mile down the frontage road.

This man should ride my bike pulling a trailer that “1/4 mile”.  It was at least a mile — btw, my bike computer has quit; I think there’s a bad connection in the wiring harness — and I was seriously grumpy by the time I got there.  They didn’t have a first floor room; the woman at the counter helpfully got me a second floor room, although once you’ve got the bike on the elevator, it doesn’t make much difference.  Anyway, I got in.

Afterward I left the trailer and rode the bike to the local bike shop, Indian Cycles, which I’ve visited before.  I bought another tube, and a new pair of gloves with lots of padding in the palms.*  Then I went to a Seafood Restaurant that turned out to have Chinese owners, where I got 2 Pan Trout and shrimp fried rice to go.  And now, I’m going back up to my room, where the beer I bought at a convenience store has been chilling, and I’m going to eat my Chinese seafood.

*I’m going to write a little essay about the varieties of pain one experience on a long bike trip, but not just now.

4 Responses to “MO2NO Day 6: Kosciusko, MS to Ridgeland, MS”

  1. Travis says:

    I wish I was on the road.

    Glad you’re having a good trip.

  2. Patrick says:

    Allen,
    You are my hero…I wish I could do that kind of ride. Alas someday.

    Patrick

  3. Reno says:

    It sounds great so far!

    Regarding your hands, there’s a reason I plan to do the trans-Nevada ride (now postponed to next summer) on a recumbent.

  4. Bio Vic says:

    Allen,

    I’ve been reading the blog and enjoying your commentary. Sounds like overall you are having a great time. You’ll have lots to tell when you get back. BTW, I became Grandma 2nd time yesterday. You have pictures in your e-mail.

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