Archive for April, 2011

Fernandina Beach to St. Augustine

59 miles

Total so far:  59

This is Bob, Sallie's husband. He's filling the role of being in charge of the command post in Fernandina, a vital function

Some times there’s just too much preparation involved in these rides.  Our equipment list is exhaustive, packing everything in four bags requires careful weighing and whatever can be done to remember where things are (I keep a list on the other side of my map case, and have to refer to it until about two weeks into the ride when I have it all down).

Regardless of all the prep, we left this morning and had a glorious ride down the coast.  The winds were up a little coming from the south-east (and of course that was where we were going).

Even with the wind and the resultant slower pace because of it, it was nearly a flawless ride.  Until that is, a

The starting point - Bob and Sallie's house in Fernandina

passenger in a passing car thought it would be cute to yell something out his open window as they drove by.  Of course this is meant to scare us, but we’ve seen that original trick before, so it’s just not scary once you’ve gone through the drill a number of times.

I have a lot of experience in dealing with rude passengers unfortunately.  Every cop has.  Most of the time you can just about bet if someone is likely to get out of control on a traffic stop, and begin challenging an officer’s qualifications with a speed measuring devices, knowledge of the law, etc., it’s the passenger.  That reminds me of good joke about passengers, but it’s far too early in this blog for that.  Remind me in a month or so.

It’s worth mentioning that we started out and rode a whole day south-east along the coast, when overall, we are supposed to be going pretty much north-west.  We will start our westward trek from here in St. Augustine — this is the beginning of the “Southern Tier Trans America

The flora of North Florida - it's what I always thought the South should look like

Route” on maps we use from the Adventure Cycling Association.  We will take it west as far as Mobile, Alabama and then go north for a ways on the “Underground Railroad Route” to Kentucky, then turn west on the traditional Trans America Route.

This is Jeff from Seattle. He pulled over on the road to speak to us. Jeff flew to Key West, is riding north to the Blue Ridge Trail, and then joining the Trans America route to return to Washington.


Tomorrow’s ride will be dedicated to Abay Lattin

My son was a humorous, intelligent, determined young man. His life was music and he used his talents to highlight Phoenix, and AZ on a national level. He had returned to AZ. from New York to do a series of concerts over a 4 day period with his group Silver Medallion-He was killed by a drunk driver.
He will be greatly be missed by many.

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No miles, but good waves…

April 24

Tomorrow we begin.

This ride has been a long time in planning.   We were going to do this in the summer of 2009.  Life’s interruptions did not kill the dream though and the time is here.  There is a lull in my schedule that allows the leave I need.  Sallie is already retired, so we are free, we are trained, and we are more than ready.

The gear is assembled, we are packed and we will likely struggle with sleep tonight as the excitement and anticipation is almost overwhelming us.


It's not been all work for us though, we took a break and walked over to the beach for an hour's session on the boogie boards.

By the way, regarding my tweet today about the Texas Lotto?  No, I didn’t win, so we’ll be camping.


Tomorrow’s ride is dedicated to Brenda Collins Newman

Brenda Collins Newman

My daughter, Brenda Newman and 7 1/2 month old unborn grandson Cian, were killed by a drunk driver just outside of Douglas, WY on October 30, 2008.  I hugged her that day before telling her to drive safely.  She always did.  She was struck avoiding a head-on collision by a drunk driver travelling 85 to 90 mph.  “I hate myself because if I had hugged her a few seconds more or a few seconds less they might be alive.”

Thank you and your sister for your efforts in bringing awareness to the tragic results of impaired driving.  -Deanna Hill, Cheyenne, WY

Brenda was a beautiful, vibrant young 37 year old woman who dedicated her life to her family, friends, and pets.  Brenda loved animals of all sizes including cats, dogs, turtles, and fish.  -Lesley A. Collins

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An Invitation

A Journey Forward

with Carl and Sallie McDonald

This will be a forward journey, with an obtainable destination, but far away from our starting place.  Not unlike our lives.

My sister Sallie and I will be riding bicycles from Florida to Oregon in the summer of 2011.   We will ride in the memory of warmer summers.

Each day will be dedicated to those whose lives are affected by the preventable crime of drunk driving.  Each pedal stroke, each turn of the tire, will be from two who carry a very personal loss of our own.

Please join us as we travel the back roads of America.  We begin April 25.


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