Posted by: rustymccain | July 20, 2011

The Dudes of Hazard!

Tonight we are the Dudes of Hazard! We are in another tough stretch.We have long days, due to the lack of accommodations. And the hills make them difficult days. We are going somewhere between 90 and 100 miles for the next two days in territory that other cyclists have warned us is challenging. We started today in more hot, humid weather. We stayed last night just shy of Berea. So the first few miles of our ride was a cruise into downtown. And what a treat! Berea is a beautiful little town and home to Berea College. It looks like the quintessential small college town. I have it marked in my mind for a return visit. Seems like a stay in the Boone Tavern Inn would make for a great weekend.

Big Hill near Berea, KY

Not long after we left the town, reality hit us. We are approaching mountains again. We hit one of our biggest climbs in a while on the way to the village of Big Hill. I guess that name should tell you something! That first climb let us know that we are back in the big leagues again.

While the hills are getting steeper and there are a lot of them, we both noted that this is a beautiful part of the country. We witnessed some of the poverty of this region as we rode, but we marveled at its natural beauty. And, mid-morning, we passed the 3,000 mile mark of our adventure!

3000 Miles!

We took it pretty easy this morning because what we knew of the route. Miles were going by slowly but surely. We arrived in the town of Booneville just before lunch. By the time we got to Booneville, dark clouds were gathering to our north and we knew we couldn’t outrun these. We didn’t.

It started raining while we ate. We pulled out into the rain and began the second half of our day’s journey. It started raining pretty hard. I was thinking at the time that someone needed to text Moses and let him know that he needs to start gathering the animals. This is the second straight day of rain, so we only have 38 days left!

The rain today was actually turned our to be a blessing. It became a gentle rain, not a thunderstorm with lightning. While it made the going a bit dicey going downhill, it was really quite refreshing.

Church in Buckhorn

Down the road, we cruised into the town of Buckhorn. There wasn’t much there except a majestic old church built over 100 years ago and an old general store, complete with several locals who were as nice as they could be. We had a great visit in the store as we had a few snacks. We got a little local history, a preview of the three climbs we had left and made some new friends.

We left Buckhorn and started our last leg on wet roads, but no longer in the rain. We rode into Hazard, or at least the outskirts and quickly realized why it is called Hazard. We ran into the worst traffic we have had on our trip. It is a Hazard to ride here. I don’t know what it was, but it seemed like everyone who owned a car here was out and about. We finally located our motel and are now safe and secure, with 96 miles in the book.

Tomorrow, we make it one step closer to our last state. We are starting to smell the salt air!


  1. Text Moses …now that made me laugh !

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