4/25/23 – Hollywood through Charleston to Mt. Pleasant, SC

Miles: 38.65 Today / 959.22 Total
Elevation Gain: 525 ft. Today / 8131 ft. Total

We got to sleep in today, because extra time was built into the schedule for enjoying Charleston. I took a break from my routine last night to call my sister Janette, so I needed a little bit more sleep this morning. And it’s about time I had a rest day, so this short 38-mile day will have to be that for now.

Before we pulled out of the campground, I noticed a mother duck hanging out by the fence I had set my tent up near last night. And the reason she was hanging out was that she had a little clutch of ducklings she was running herd on. It’s hard to see them in this photo, but there were about 6 of them, andthey had yellow bodies and black heads. She seemed to be digging up worms and feeding them to them. They were so cute!

I spent the entire day riding and sight seeing on my own. Putzing around at my own pace and spending as much or as little time as I want to checking out statues, landmarks and shops suites me. I did run into one person from our group in Charlestown–our head ride leader, Jade. She had parked at an intersection near “The Battery”, in case anyone needed anything from the rider support van, which none of us did, but I was nearby, so popped over to say Hi.

Here’s how my day went. Shortly after beginning my ride, I found myself on the North Ashley Greenway, a rail trail that took me over halfway to Charleston on a nice smooth pathway, with no traffic. Once in Charleston, the traffic situation worsened, but in the historic parts of town, there were so many tour groups and tour busses, that all the cars were moving slowly, and it was easy to get around them.

I started out at White Point Gardens, a shaded park with a central walkway lined with numerous statues and monuments.

Then I rode around “The Battery,” which is a defensive seawall and promenade named for a Civil War artillery battery that was located at that site. It is lined with historic antebellum mansions, and the promenade is a 1.2 mile walkway along the seawall in front of the mansions and White Point Gardens. Here’s a photo taken on a day when there wasn’t a 14 mph wind whipping up waves and blowing people on bicycles all over the place.

After riding “The Battery”, I took the recommendations of a bike mounted tourist host and rode down Broad and Meeting streets to see how the real people lived.

Then I headed to the City Market, where I was hoping to see some produce and baked goods, but I had that wrong. It was mostly cheap jewellery, weird craft items, chincy souvenir items, etc.—not my thing. But it was surrounded by restaurants, and I ended up sampling some cookies and stopping in a little Italian place for a delicious Calzone.

By now, it was close to 3:00 PM, so I hopped on my bike and headed out for Mt. Pleasant, where we were to camp at St. Peters Church. It was pretty windy out, and at times, when I was riding into a headwind, I felt like I was barely moving. As I crossed the 2.5 mile long Cooper River Bridge, there was a 14 mph cross wind with gusts that almost knocked me over a few times. I was in a pedestrian bike lane, separated from traffic by a concrete barrier, and the wind was blowing away from the bridge railing, so being blown over wouldn’t have killed me, but it was pretty scary just the same.

The route took a little long cut up to Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms, probably to subject me to more head and cross winds, but I was glad to see those parts of the world. But now I was really wanting to get to the church and get settled for the evening.

And that’s when I saw a sign for a Target store, and was needing a few food items and a new fork and spoon (can’t find mine), so I pulled in. In the course of rounding up the cocoa, lunch and snack food, I noticed a new Ben & Jerry’s flavor I’ve never tasted and bought myself a pint. Let’s see now, I had 3.9 miles left to go to get to the church, and I was moving at about 12 mph. If I waited 20 minutes to eat the ice cream, it would be melted, so I sat down on the bench in front of Target and downed the entire pint. That bench seemed like an appropriate place to call my sister Catherine, so before moving on, I talked to her for a while and had some laughs over the latest firings of news personalities.

St. Peters Church’s accommodations for us? A big barn for people willing to sleep on a concrete floor (me) and a beautiful grassy area lined with tall trees for folks who like to set up their tents. Pretty cool accommodations, don’t you think?

2 thoughts on “4/25/23 – Hollywood through Charleston to Mt. Pleasant, SC

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