Friday, June 20, 2008

The nice part of the C&O

I was glad to leave Cumberland, after being there for only 10 hours (and sleeping for 6 of that). It has a bad vibe to it. So bad that I saw a buzzard circling overhead downtown Cumberland looking for food, perhaps me. It feels like a mix of industrial wasteland, rust belt town meets the wild west. And just when I thought I was escaping, I only came upon something worse...

The C&O canal was nice... for about 10 feet. Shortly after that it turned into a soup of water, dirt, and rocks. My little 20 centimeter road bike tires weren't happy with this and neither was I. The 19 miles I was riding on the trail took twice as long as I had hoped. The trail bruised and battered my ego, how was I going to get to the cabin 80 miles away if I can't get done with the first 19 miles? It felt like it would never end, as I was caked with layer upon layer of mud trying to dodge the worst mudholes. Several hours later, I made it to the bridge in Oldtown, MD to cross into WV. I was excited, but by this point my ankle was burning and aching to an almost unbearable level. I knew that the only way to fix my ankle was rest, which would be 60 miles and 6 hours away from where I now was.

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