There’s no place in Florida to adequately train for a bicycle ride up a long mountain trail like the spectacular climb to the Hai Van Pass in Vietnam. The ride takes you up 1,627 feet from nearly sea level, through a lush forest, to a windy overlook with photo-inspiring views of the South China Sea. The abandoned bunkers at the pass are sober reminders that French and then American soldiers fought there in the mid 20th Century.
There’s no “Welcome to Florida” sign on the Suwannee River. No message from Gov. Rick Scott saying Florida is “Open for Business.” And that’s probably appropriate. We saw no signs of commerce and few signs of other people last weekend on a 42-mile kayak trip that started at the river’s source at the edge of the Okefenokee Swamp in south Georgia.
After I left The Ledger in July, I had time for a trip I’d been wanting to take for several years. It seems several other people wanted to take it, too, and told me they enjoyed following my journeys on Facebook. Here are some highlights: