Day 32 – “La Grange”, “Legs” ZZ Top

Bastrop to La Grange, TX

41 miles

Shorter mileage day today meant we left a bit later than usual. Our start time was 9!  The mornings that we have a more relaxed start are a treat. Ate breakfast at the Hampton Inn which had a little bit of everything to choose from.  Very nice.

The first portion of our ride took us to Bastrop State Park where we weaved our way through the park roads for 12 miles. The roads were in pretty good shape with little or no traffic. During our map meeting, Carol told us there would be a few steep rollers – hmmm, I never like the sound of that.  A few were true rollers where you could head down at full force and find yourself up and around the other side. These are the kind of hills that you squeal “wheeeeeeee!” when riding.   And the other handful well, one had an 18% grade. And the word that I was screaming was not quite “wheeee”.   And, yes, I walked up that one.  When you are pedaling so hard with all of your might that you end up lifting the front wheel up off the ground, that is a good indication that it is time to get off the bike before you come to a complete standstill and fall over.   I do wear bike shoes that clip into the pedals, and you have to know when to unclip, or as I like to think of it-bail !  I have had one fall on this trip-a not very glamorous spill in the Mickey D’s parking lot in El Paso. I was nearly at a standstill and I unclipped my left foot, but had a brain fart and leaned right.   Plop. On the ground with my handlebars leaving a fine imprint on my angry ass.

Bastrop State Park had a fire in 2011 that devastated half of the park.  It is amazing to me the damage that can be done with one cigarette!  There are signs of life again in the damaged area – the renewal from a burn can be beneficial- so I try to think about the positive.




Found a fun sign to take a pic with




The wildflowers were brilliant today – one more pic of them –


Holy Moly!  As I write this, a crazy storm is battering us!  Rain, wind, lightening – beating against the window, causing the lights to flicker, and the cable to go out for a bit!  My room overlooks the pool, and the tables and chairs have been blown over.  I am thankful that it arrived tonight and not while we were on the road.  Local news station says there was hail reported -none here.  In between I was able to watch the RedSox/Rangers game on ESPN.

Tomorrow is 70 miles to Navasota!



8 thoughts on “Day 32 – “La Grange”, “Legs” ZZ Top

  1. Yes, that spill at McDonalds definitely left a mark! Glad you had time this morning to actually wake up before heading out, and a good nights sleep without a snoring roommate!

  2. Even though I winced at your McDonald’s fall, you had me in stitches the way you described it.
    The park ride looks great, if a little burnt at times.
    I’m glad you missed the storm.
    Ride on!

  3. Dear Karen, We’re friends of Jane Johnston and trying to follow you across on your ride. We did the Southern Route fully loaded in 1998 and our luck sounds a lot like yours, hail and all. We missed seeing wildflowers. It took us 25 days to get through Texas but you are covering more mileage than we could do in a day. I love seeing your blogs. Please stay safe, and say hi to Jane for us. — Rosemary and Blake

  4. I love that you said this — “There are signs of life again in the damaged area – the renewal from a burn can be beneficial- so I try to think about the positive.” I haven’t been able to keep up with your journey as I cry every time I read something. You are making such a difference on this trip to so many people, but sharing this experience in the way that you do is changing all our lifes…giving us hope….and forcing us to go on and appreciate our lives. I love you my friend

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