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We saw a series of fast food restaurants and opted to stop at a Steak ‘n Shake to get a snack and have our water bottles refilled. The Beast measured herself at the doorway criminal height chart … still not quite 5 feet tall. When we left, we followed what we thought was the bike path and somehow ended up in the back parking lot of Sandcastle Water park. Ugh!
We brought her bike to the sidewalk where she assessed her scrapes. She thanked us for stopping and we all made introductions. Frankenbutt saw numerous scrapes and retrieved our first aid kit. We gave Nicole a few alcohol wipes to help clean the wounds on her leg and arm. Frankenbutt asked if she had a spare tube since her front tire was flat. She did and Frankenbutt offered to change it for her. Once her tire was changed, we wished one another well and we got back to riding since the sun was getting lower in the sky.
Our GPS put us on Carson Street which had very little shoulder. When a sidewalk opened up ahead of us, we were hopeful that we were going to have a better riding circumstance. It was short lived. The sidewalk grew more and more narrow and crowded with foliage from the side and the ground. When it reached the point of less than 18” wide of space, it suddenly ended with an iron gate. We backed our bikes back (through branches that scraped our arms) to the last intersection. We crossed the street to an equally bad sidewalk and made our way through the rush hour traffic on Carson Street.
When we came to a shopping center, we consulted the GPS to find the closest hotel or campground. Like most large cities, Pittsburgh did not have campgrounds within the city limits. We found an Econo Lodge, called and the manager said he would hold a room for us without a credit card after he heard we were bicycling. After winding our way through construction and climbing a ridiculously long uphill, we arrived at the Econo Lodge. It was 8:15 pm and we were exhausted.
Tomorrow we hope to cross into Ohio and ride towards Ohio Dreams, where the Beast is scheduled to attend BMX camp starting this Sunday. Now, I’m going to sleep.