After a leisurely breakfast of “expired” bacon (I should have been suspicious when the Marathon station only had one package, but I didn’t notice the “best by 9/15/2011” till this morning), fried potatoes and oatmeal, where I managed to not quite burn down the picnic table, I checked out the showers (highly recommended) and rolled south. In Lake City I stopped at Chickadee Cafe for a pulled pork sandwich and apple bread pudding, a la mode. The sandwich was ok, albeit small; the bread pudding was excellent.
Then it proceeded to rain intermittently for the rest of the day.
After 54 miles of wet headwinds & hills I made it to Merrick State Park, after hours, where a sign at the self registration station informed me the showers would be shut off at 9 am on October 12th. Oh well. Then I proceeded ride through the entire campground in search of the $14 campsite I had paid for. The entire North loop was electric only (read=more expensive). The South loop seemed to be either the more expensive “island” campsites or table-less. As the sun finally fell below the horizon, I gave up, turned around and set up at the first site with a table.
Cooking diner in the dark I discovered my Trangia alcohol stove is still not behaving, but I didn’t manage to get pics of any of the fireballs. I also made the really stupid mistake of unscrewing the cap from my fuel bottle and taking a big swig. Fortunately I realized the taste was wrong and spit it out before swallowing it. If I show up blind or eyebrow-less next time you see me you’ll know why. :-)
The sounds of wildlife, the water and the falling leaves made it strangely hard to sleep. Fortunately, trying to post via “swype” on my touchscreen phone was exhausting enough to remedy that.