dateline: Dalton, GA
Slept behind Bear Creek shop, warm & quiet. Nice having permission to stay.
Bought propane & drove up I-75 to Chattanooga to ride raccoon mtn again. First car in parking lot. Nice day but hazy. trail mostly dry. Great riding w/ new bottom bracket & chain & cluster. front brake appears to work OK, rear w/ new rotor is awesome. Megawatt trail @ visitors’ center was closed. Rode across dam & spotted rock work section below me that I couldn’t get to (more later). This piece shortened the ride by almost 5 miles.
I saw several riders ahead of me but I lost them @ visitors center. I made the TH b4 them. When they showed the van sparked a conversation. Andy, manager of Trek store in town, chatted. He invited me down for keg beer that they have in the shop. Sort of appealing. i asked for shower choices and he said the shop had 1 that i could use. Cool now. Beer from brewry in Asheville and a shower. I’m in.
On Andy’s ride was a new rider riding clipless for first time. He made the ride w/o falling. In the parking lot at the information bulletin board a pile of football size rocks protected the board. The guy was reading the notices while clipped in. He lost his balance and fell onto the rock pile. When he picked himself up we all noticed the chain ring gouge on his calf. I don’t have , he got his way early in his riding career. We told him to not wash it. He was also at the store during my stay spoting the unwashed wound. Cool.
Oh, Andy is familiar w/ trail and knew where the trail was so muddy to be closed and he was able to bypass it on the road and drop down to it. I didn’t know that, hence my road ride until I picked up where I knew it would.
Andy & his wife Heather are from Illinois just recently. He says that Chattanooga is a current hot spot for outdoor activity. I didn’t ask him about the Cougars.
Back @Dalton and will drive back to FS site from several days ago for night.