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Friday, May 19, 2017

Day 14 - Sat May 20

7 Mile Bridge Looking North towards Marathon - We're going South
Sunset last night at Lor-e-Lei was great. Jack is doing great. I have sun-poisoning. Wouldn't you know it - two days to go and I get a disease. Today's ride takes us from Islamorada to Marathon - a distance of  33.4 miles. As we leave the Island of Islamorada, we will pass a little island off to the Oceanside called Terra Key. It’s an island with a large house, tennis courts, dock and an area for a helicopter to land. Gene Hackman use to stay there. Gene Hackman is over 80 and still an avid cyclist. Once, while he was on a bike path here in the Keys, a motorist not paying attention bumped into the rear of his bike causing his rim to look like a taco. He flew from his bike and hit the ground. He got up and brushed it off. Now that's the coach I remember from Hoosiers! At the 72 mile marker we come to our first REAL bridge crossing. It’s Channel 5 Bridge and it’s almost 2 miles. The shoulder is about 5 feet wide. That takes us into Layton. Layton is an interesting little town. It’s actually incorporated, has a mayor, a volunteer fire department and it contracts with the Sheriff’s office to keep an empty patrol car parked out on the highway near it’s flashing light to slow traffic down. When the weeds grow too high, they move the empty patrol car across the street until public works can mow the grass, then back to it’s original location. The locals say that the patrol car should be voted officer of the year. Depending on the weather, the wind , the traffic and our bodies, we will either stop in Marathon or continue across the longest bridge in the Keys - The Iconic 7-mile Bridge. If we decide to cross, the ride today will be a 40.4 mile day. Jack's been across on a motorcycle and I've been across in a car and on foot (7 Mile Bridge Run back in the 80's), but neither of us have crossed it on a bicycle. The bridge is actually 6.8 mile long. Yes, someone from the government lied to us! The shoulder is about 5 feet wide. Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in a film called “True Lies” that was shot partially in the Keys, involving a sequence of helicopter stunts and an explosion on the old Seven Mile Bridge - which is still there and used as a pedestrian/fishing bridge. We plan to stay at Banana Bay Resort & Marina - 4590 Overseas Hwy, Marathon, FL 33050 - (305) 743-3500

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