I was visited last night by a raccoon. It had climbed up into my trunk bag and ripped open a bag of home-made trailmix. The mess was unfortunate, but the trailmix was too dry and won't be missed.
I was feeling sluggish and took my time, eating, reorganizing, and taking pictures until 11am. The difference between my last two nights seems astounding - one spent safe, dry, and comfortable in a luxurious, expensive campground. The other I spent in a tiny clearing behind a parking lot for ATV trailers, sweaty and mosquito bitten, but still safe and comfortable with everything I needed in walking distance. Even the candy bars in the KOA office building where a rip-off. I wasn't so resentful that I refused to enjoy myself, but I hope I don't have to do anything like this again for a long time.
The dry, cloudy morning developed into a damp, sticky, stifling hot day. I never quite had enough energy. Rain and thunderstorms where being predicted in the early afternoon. There where few places to stop and rest. All my food was too dry and dense and I had a horrible time forcing it down. At one point my jaw seemingly rebelled and I couldn't chew a Clif bar. All I wanted was something fresh and juicy - the thought of a green pepper made my mouth water.
Now that I got most of the bad out of the way, I'll acknowledge the first time I've biked into a national forest. It means as much to me as state lines or significant sequences of numbers on my odometer.
Eventually I came across a sign for a bait and tackle shop, two miles off my road. It advertised having having snacks and produce, no way am I passing that up. As I rode towards it, the sky even began to look suspiciously blue. Sure enough, my weather radio confirms that the storm clouds where heading off to Minnesota. I also found two relatively fresh-looking green peppers, which restored my appetite.
Finally, the cloud of sluggishness lifted. I sat out in front of the shop and sliced up one pepper to store for later, and ate the other on the spot. I ended up buying a bag of milky ways and some jerky, and eating most of that too.