2012 Bike Sojourn – Day 4
42 miles from Williamsport MD to Little Orleans
It was super hot today – upper 90s. Heat index near 100. I broke camp very early and joined up with Jim, a guy I met yesterday. We got out before breakfast was served to try to avoid the worst of the heat. This proved to be a very good strategy.
By 9:30, we had already arrived in Hancock MD about 2 hours ahead of schedule and had a huge breakfast at a diner we found called “The Potomac Grill”. The cool, air-conditioned restaurant was a welcome sight and the food was excellent. After breakfast/brunch, we scooted out and promptly got back to the trail.
The C&O path is heavily canopied with trees, so it helped to keep me cool. A few miles in, we arrived at Fort Fredrick and wandered around. The downside to our ‘leave extra early’ strategy was that the Fort was still closed when we arrived. So we just looked a bit and stretched our legs.
After departing the fort, we were able to join the Western Maryland Rail Trail for about 22 miles, which parallels the C&O path … but is paved! Those miles went pretty easily. The conditions on the path were a much welcomed break from the bumpy forest C&O path, but it wasn’t quite as nicely canopied, so it was a bit more hot.
A few miles later, we arrived at Little Orleans, MD. Very hot. Very sweaty. I had consumed about three quarts of Gatorade already and have drunk a fourth while sitting down.
Little Orleans is a very tiny town. I am sitting at “Bill’s”, a (the only?) local place that appears to be somewhat famous on the C&O path. People come and put dollar bills on the ceiling and stock up on everything from food, beer, worms, and local news. It has a character all its own. And it is the only place along the towpath for 20 miles in either direction! I gave Bill a dollar to post on the ceiling with my name on it, so look for it there.
As I sit here cooling off, I am really not looking forward to heading to the camp sight and setting up camp in 97 degree weather. Perhaps another bottle of water here at Bill’s would be a better idea.
Aside from the Fort, there weren’t many tourist spots along the way. Lots of pretty scenery, but not much to write about.
My upper back started hurting from where I stressed it unloading bags from the truck on Sunday. As I write this, it feels pretty sore.
I don’t have any cell signal, so I’ll post my blog and pictures later. By the time you are reading this, I’m already a day or two ahead.
Until then, keep praying for cooler weather and that my back feels better soon.
Peace & Blessings!
– Dc. Matt