I had been thinking of riding the Silver Comet trail for a while, but first I needed to up my mileage. The original plan was to ride with a friend, but he had to back out. Since the trail seems fairly safe and well-traveled, I decided to go it alone.
On April 13, Amber dropped me off at the Anniston, AL trailhead of the Chief Ladiga trail. With all my things in my Camelbak Mule NV, I was ready to ride the longest distances I had ever done.
Here’s what I packed:
- Plenty of Power and Clif bars for snack and lunch
- Energy gels
- 100oz water (with GU Brew electrolyte tablets) reservoir in the hydration pack
- 25oz water bottle
- Tube patch kit
- Tire levers
- Mini pump
- An extra tube
- Bike lock
- Garmin Oregon 450 GPS
- Chamois Butt’r
- Rain jacket
- Rain shell pants, which I also wore when I went for dinner etc.
The one thing I forgot was sunscreen. Portions of the Chief Ladiga trail don’t have much tree cover and I did get tanned a lot.
I rode 45.3 miles the first day to Cedartown, GA. I went at a comfortable, slow speed and stopped a bunch of times to enjoy the scenery.
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I stayed the night at the Holiday Inn Express there which is about 1.5 miles from the trail. The hotel let me keep my bicycle in the room which was nice.
The next morning, I had the complementary breakfast at the hotel and headed out. Sitting on the bike seat hurt at first but I got comfortable soon.
The weather started out as cool and nice.
Right out of Cedartown, the trail left the old rail tracks and got hilly for a few miles. I was glad because I am used to rolling hill rides around home.
The Silver Comet had a lot more people, cycling, walking and running, than the Chief Ladiga trail.
Around Dallas, GA, it started raining. I was glad I had my rain jacket and rain cover for my backpack. But I still got completely soaked and had to ride the last 20 miles in the rain.
Finally, I reached the Highland Center Shopping Center on the Connector trail (about a mile long) where Amber was waiting to pick me up.
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I rode a total of 54.4 miles on Sunday, thus totaling 99.7 miles for the weekend.