Sunday, November 27, 2016

Florida in November.

It’s been more than a few weeks since the last update.  For the most part, it’s been quiet and not too cold.  Here’s the recap, pictures in no particular order.

In South Carolina I spent some quality time with my brother Jim and got to see a couple old friends.  Good times were had by all, I assure you.  I camped a a few nights at the Brick House Campground in the Sumter National Forest.  One day  I took off on my KTM and got seriously lost in the woods.  All roads lead nowhere for a while.  Adventure!  I found my way out using a compass and watching for power lines that led to a road and a locked gate.  I was already on the wrong side of the gate but was able to get under gate with little effort.  

Getting new tires in Florida

I raced through Georgia.  Due to time constraints caused by bad planning, I had to miss out on seeing some distant friends (although I’m not gone yet) and finally made it to Florida where I managed to keep the appointment I’d made many months ago: dinner with a nephew to celebrate our respective birthdays.  He vaguely remembered the plan I’d rushed across the country for….

Camping near Gainesville.

Then I made a short trip back to the mountains of north Georgia to tear up some new tires on the Ducati while the frost remained at bay.   After a couple of days,  a fork seal let go and there was a bit of oil everywhere.  And some frost in the mornings, as it must.  So south again, to the Ocala National Forest while parts were on order, from Italy.  There I picked up a rusty old nail in the rear tire on the KTM, forcing a road-side tube change.  At least I had the supplies I needed with me!  It was about 6 miles back to camp.

North Georgia Mountains in November.

Bit of fork oil.  Not a good sign.

It’s deer season in Florida, so for my own safety, I was camping in a designated campground.   It’s not so bad if you don’t mined neighbors with generators.  I mind a little, but it’s deer season and the sound of a generator is better than being shot near.

So a few more weeks bouncing around Florida before I depart, heading back out west.  Future plans include finishing the Great Divide Mountain bike route.  If you haven’t already, go to this Tumblr account to see pictures from last May on the Great Divide. Paul's Tumblr

Two-Striped Walking Stick can shoot caustic juice that can burn skin and eyes.  I figured as much since they were obvious and oblivious.  Other names for the same bug (and I'm not making these up): devil's riding horse, prairie alligator, stick bug, witches horse, devil's darning needle, scorpion, and the musk mare.  

Alligator not pictured.

Flat tire.

Rusty nail.

road-side repairs

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