May 22:  Dover, TN to Grand Rivers, KY  54 miles

The forecast was for cool air in the morning warming to the mid 70s by midday with cloud cover on and off.  The route promised no dogs due to the fact that the majority of the day would be spent in a national recreation area where dogs off leash are forbidden!  So another hearty breakfast and off  the group rode.  This is the sixth straight day of riding, so the legs are beginning to slow down, but everyone was determined to enjoy the day.

We are in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains so quadriceps building, hamstring strengthen is the norm on the day.  With each push there is an accompanying groan just before the pull!  The mind starts to play a huge roll in the assistance of getting the body to the top of the next ridge.  "I know I can, I know I can, -- okay, just get to the top!"  The first third of the ride seemed to be going more uphill, then down, but logic kept saying there has to be a long down somewhere.  And there were -- long, well paved, slightly winding coasts down through the forests and fields.  There is nothing better on a bike after a long hard climb, then a long, long gentle coast down.  The heart resumes a normal beat, the lungs stop panting, the legs just relax and the smile returns to the face.  So for every little bit of work there is a reward!!

The Land Between the Lakes is a national recreation area that is situated between the Kentucky Lake (made by the Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River) and Lake Barkley (made by the damming of the Cumberland River).  While primarily a natural habitat with no commercialization, there are a few points of man-made interest.  One is the Homeplace, a replica of a 19th century working farm complete with livestock.  Another is an old furnace that was used in the 1800s to process iron ore from the surrounding hills.  During these times the people of the area (predominately Scottish heritage) used whatever resources they needed with no regard for possibly running out or polluting the land.  When the crops failed or the ore disappeared, they merely moved on.

Bison roam free on the prairies protected from the general public by high wire fences.  At first it would appear the fences were there to keep the animals off the roads, out of the campsites, etc. but no -- it is to keep them safe from humans!!

The park is beautiful with its wide parkway (Trace, in this part of the country!), little to no traffic, and gorgeous forests and meadows.  The spring flowers are in bloom coloring the fields in yellow.  The raspberry bushes are in blossom along side wild rose bushes.  If one looks carefully onto the forest floor, the woodland flowers are trying to peek out at the passersby.

Grand Rivers (pop 343) is situated at the junction of the two rivers at the north end of the recreation area.  To get to our home away from home we needed to cross over the Kentucky Dam which is a two lane busy highway with no shoulder to speak of.  Fortunately for some of the riders, large trucks took pity and slowly followed them across preventing the traffic from behind from speeding by. 

Interestingly, the highway's name in the Andrew Jackson Smith Highway.  He was s a black Union Army soldier during the Civil War and a recipient of America's highest military decoration the Medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Honey Hill.  Sadly, he died in 1932 and didn't received the honor until President Clintion bestowed it on him in 2001.  He is buried in Grand Rivers, KY.

The Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park Lodge is our home for the next two nights.  After a long beautiful week, we now have earned a day of rest!

Anne & Frankie Doing Those Hills

Judy Too!



Entrance to Land Between the Lakes

Old Iron Furnace


Even the Oxen Were Tired!

Homeplace Child

Homeplace Ducks!

Okay, Can They Really Plow This Field?

The Group on an Investigative Detail!

Bison Grazing

Bison Napping!


Laurie Tired!!!!

Sue & Rebecca:  "Are We There Yet?"

Lois:  "Yes, I Can See the End of My Cue Sheet!!"

Cumberland River


Tennessee River

Kentucky Dam

Dam Roadway!

Our Patio Mate

And His Friends!!