Day 41 – Bardstown to Berea

Fri 16th July 2010

From this point on we only have to average 70 miles per day but in the heat and terrain that will still be a tough challenge. We have covered over 180 miles in the past two days in extremely high temperatures and ever increasing hills. It’s also 11 days since we had a rest day and added together has left Chris quite exhausted to the point that he just wants to be at the end. We will probably bring our next rest day forward and take it in a couple of days time, maybe sooner depending on how Chris is feeling.

Rural Kentucky

Today's route took us through some very rural areas


These Alpacas were very cute

We were on the road again at first light and the first 40 miles today were pretty good. We had some cloud cover which kept the heat of the sun off us but the humidity has to be experienced to be believed. Sweat was just pouring off us all day. In the afternoon the sun came out and some longer, steeper hills made the last 30 miles hard work.

Grocery store

The first grocery store for 40 miles. We were almost out of water when we found this.

At a place called Mackville we passed some ‘Road Closed’ signs and as usual we ignored them. So when we got to the road works we were quite surprised to find that the bridge that should have been there wasn’t. Luckily the workmen building the new bridge were and they assisted us to get across in one piece. They were a good bunch and we had a few laughs with them before we carried on. We asked them to have a joke with Ed (the other cyclist we’ve been with for the last few days) and tell him, when he reached there, that he would have to go back and take a 20 mile detour. They liked that idea but we’ve yet to speak to Ed to see what happened.


The end of the road - literally

This guy carried our bikes to save us getting covered in mud. That's Sherman fully loaded - he deserves a medal.

Reaching Berea today is a boost for me and it’s a shame Chris isn’t feeling the same way just now. Berea is the gateway to the Apellachian Mountains which is our next and final challenge of this ride. It may also prove to be the most testing if the tales of woe we’ve heard from all the Westbound cyclists prove to be true. I can’t believe they’ll be any worst than cycling over the Pyrenees so it should be a piece of cake! Time will tell.

We had a few more half hearted dog chases today but it’s been so hot I don’t think the dogs can be bothered. I hope they get their act together because we spent $15 on pepper spray and we need to use it up before we finish :-)

If we ride tomorrow our destination will be Booneville approx 60 miles away.

Dail Mileage – 95.35 miles

Time in Saddle – 8 hrs 28 mins

Total Climbing – 5,619 ft


  1. Oh, my! Can’t imagine how you can continue in that heat! Seems you have been getting the worst of the weather from coast to coast, from unrelenting rain to record-breaking heat and high humidity. Thankfully, us folks west of the Rockies don’t have to contend with high humidity, it likes to hang out in the eastern United States. Chris, so sorry to hear you are feeling poorly. But you’re on the home stretch, so hang in there!

  2. Oh I love the alpacas – you know I have wanted one for ages, can you get one in your pannier?

  3. ahhhhh nearly there, not far to go now – tell Chris to try and enjoy it and not to dwell on the tiredness, its such an amazing journey – Im so envious! And with any luck you might be able to take it a bit easier from now on? although the Appalachian mountains might be a bit of drawback, Im looking forward to the pictures you will take there…!
    Keep pedalling guys, and enjoy the scenery, you will all too soon, be back in boring old Blighty (where i might add, it has been raining constantly for the last few days) …… ;)
    Les xxx

  4. Chris,I bet you can almost smell the sea air.Not far now mate.Enjoy the last bit.Sandy

  5. Dad, take your rest day if you need it! 11 days not having a day off is too much in that heat!! How are you managing it! you need a break!
    I really dont envy you!!

    Thinking of you
    Love you

  6. Cycling in that heat must be unbearable but your doing good, but dont wear yourself out.

  7. Hey Chris and Alan,
    It’s hot here too, but we don’t have to deal with the humidity, thank goodness. You have come such a long way, and we appreciate how tired you must be, but the beautiful Appalachians beckon and may well be the highlight of your tour. We would love to see those “mountains” with you (nothing like the Rockies). Someday I’ll (Jude) get there, I hope. Chris, if it’ll make you feel better, I’ll (Jude again) be crippled by the time I get my Sportster to Sturgis, but by golly, I’m going to ride the whole way, if only to be able to say I did it! Keep the end in sight, but don’t let it mar your experience along the way. Hang in there boys! We’re rooting for you all the way!

  8. Safely in Swanage!!

  9. Hello guys great to read your blogs.Just to let you know Penny your old mucker cycled to the air show today and i conquered Hannington Hill ! (bet your impressed ?) Sorry mate but weve eaten all our strawberries but i will save you a lettuce ! Not long to go now guys so dig deep penny and show that us old boys from Blunsdon can last the pace!!! All the best to you both.

  10. Hi Alan and Chris
    Well done so far.
    Just to let you know its my birthday today and its raining as usual. I’ll have a drink for both of you.
    Cheers Bob