Day 7: Silver Comet Trail

Breakfast with Fay:
Leaving the Ragsdale Inn for the final segment of the Silver Comet Trail:

The end of the Silver Comet, but also the beginning of a connector trail which took us to the hotel where Billie’s car was parked.

Miles = 26. Total miles = 199. In 7 days!

Billie, “How many grandmas do you know who can do something like this?”

We loaded our bikes and gear onto Billie’s pollen-covered car and drove to Greenville South Carolina.

Day 6: Silver Comet Trail

This should have been the day we pushed our bikes up several hills, but we found a way to avoid them! Doug Woods and his wife picked us up at 6:30 am
and drove us to Rockmart. When we tried to give him some money, he refused. Trail angel!
Because it was only 37 degrees, we had a very long breakfast at Linda’s Place.
By 10 am, it was in the low 50s and it was time to ride. 2 miles later we were in downtown Rockmart.
It must be time to eat again! A cookie for the road:
And coffee at South Marble.

Brushy Mountain Tunnel:

On the porch at the Ragsdale Inn.
Miles = 21

Day 4: Rest

Our hotel is VERY nice.
Ginger Marsh, owner, did all the decorating.
We walked around downtown Anniston today and had lunch at Noble Street Deli. Peach cobbler cupcakes came with our meal. Yum!
Then we stopped at an art gallery which featured the works of 25 local artists. The owner Ann gave us some good news: the Chief Ladiga Trail will soon be extended all the way to Anniston. And we met Jay Ingram, a totally charmimg and funny guy.Jay, now in his 90s started working at this Rexall drugstore when he was 15 years old. He and the owners got along really well. Jay took on more and more tasks and learned the business quickly. By the time he graduated from high school, he owned 25% of the business. Eventually he owned it all and sold it only when he retired.
Another famous Anniston landmark established in 1899. The brothel was upstairs.

Day 3: Chief Ladiga Trail

9 am and it’s 41 degrees. We were each wearing 5 layers of clothing and still cold. Riding warmed us up fairly quickly. We took Subway sandwiches because we weren’t sure what services would be available, especially since it’s Sunday and most businesses are closed.
We are always concerned about wildlife encounters (my scariest was riding past a watchful bear) so when Billie said, “What’s that down the trail? Is it an animal?” I don’t know. It looked like a tiny buffalo but maybe it was a huge dog. It didn’t move, we approached cautiously. The tiny buffalo:
At the state line, the Silver Comet Trail ended
and the Chief Ladiga (luh-DIE-guh) Trail began:
Terrapin Creek:

Duggar Mountain, second highest point in Alabama:

The end of trail in Weaver with an immediate welcome sign for Anniston which was still 6 miles away.
We rode until the shoulder disappeared on the 4-lane, high-speed road into town. It just wasn’t safe so we called the local taxi company who sent a van to pick us up. A $10 solution! There was a bar at our hotel! We had a great time talking with Jessica, the front desk manager and bartender. Then more patons arrived.
We really enjoyed meeting Dan and Sharon who live just 30 miles away. Then we visited with some other cyclists (the photo-bomb guy).
Miles = 48 and 52 degrees at 4pm.

Day 2: Silver Comet Trail

A more challenging day: more miles, too-steep-to-ride hills, a 10 mph headwind, and a frustrating process to get into our room. The day started out great, a very good breakfast at the Ragsdale Inn and perfect weather.

Besides having cameras pointing up and down the trail, the local sheriff’s office has 3 officers who patrol in these tiny vehicles.
There are many trestle crossings.
Brushy Mountain Tunnel:

The trail goes through the middle of Rockmart, another picturesque small town:

Then we had to do some climbing. This was the first hill we had to walk up, followed by at least 5 more. Ugh!

In between the hills, bucolic countryside:

Billie to the heavens above, “If I could have just one wish, please drop down an ice cold cappuccino to me right now.”
Arrived! Cedartown.
Sadly, it took us 2 hours at the front desk to get into a room despite our reservation. The first room hadn’t been cleaned and still had someone’s belongings inside. Skipping to the conclusion: we ended up in suite and it was comped.

Miles = 34

Day 1: Silver Comet Trail

It was a bit chilly this morning so we decided to leave at 55 degrees, about 9:30.C65916B0-7894-4477-86B6-12737779571F

We are in the South now!
The Ragsdale Inn in Dallas GA. We are the only guests tonight.

We thought we could have dinner at this diner, but it was fake. It’s part of a movie being filmed here, Stargirl.
Dessert on the porch:
Miles = 26.

From Smyrna Georgia

Yesterday I flew to Roanoke Virginia where Billie lives. Today we drove south to Smyrna. Sheetz is one of my favorite places in the south. You order at a computer terminal – super easy – go pay, then pick up your freshly-prepared food. The selection of food and drinks (including fancy coffees) is huge and the prices are low.
Welcome to the freeways around Atlanta. Our exit is 9 miles away and it will only take 30 minutes to get there.
Tomorrow we will begin riding the Silver Comet Trail.