Day started in a Kankakee hotel where I discovered the elevator was broken. This meant unloading the bike, carrying it down from my room on the 3rd floor to the lobby, then 3 more trips to get all bags on the bike. Ok – already tired.
The trip out of Bradley was easy as the road followed a thundering river. Last night this area got 3 inches of rain, and flooding was evident everywhere. As I started down secondary gravel roads, the clouds let loose once again and wind came straight from the west.
Darn Rumble Strips
On four occasions I’ve traveled down a back road only to have to backtrack to busy SR17 as water flowed quickly across roads from flooded farm fields carrying debris. The state road was challenging as it had a 12-inch shoulder with a rumble strip right down the middle.
I either had to ride in the traffic lane or maintain a difficult 6-inch strip without rattling teeth loose on the rumbles or going into water filled ditches. Took a lot of focus and was tiring. Department of transportation, please, please quit adding rumble strips to edges!
Enough is Enough!
Finally, I had had enough of backtracking when I came across another flooded road. I stripped down to bike shorts since they we’re already wet and put my pannier straps over my head and waded the stream! And survived.
I rode approximately 75 miles to Streator, IL. The sun came out and flooding was no more, so I rode faster and finished with 75 miles.
Went to Kroger and bought a salad and fancy fruit juice drink and ate it outside where I found an outlet to charge my phone.
Then I went to a park behind Walmart called Marila park and pushed my bike across a creek through some woods and into an overgrown field for camp.
My buddy and fellow killer bike rider friend texted me that all epic adventures have challenges. Clay is so right! What do you think? What challenges have you had to overcome on an adventure?