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It was already warm when I took off this morning. No need for a jacket today. I think the temperature was in the 60's at 8:30 am when I got back on Hwy 105. The road today was fabulous. The shoulder was wide and the asphalt was smooth. There was a light tailwind and the conditions were perfect.
The landscape took a dramatic change today. For the first time on my southern US tour I was riding in lush surroundings. Most of Texas is suffering a serious and unrelenting drought. Not here. There is water everywhere. The grasses are thick and dark green. This area is also very poor. Most properties were occupied with rundown trailers and RV's. There were very few actual homes. Dogs were barking furiously everywhere but none gave chase. The area is also very religious. I'm not sure I've ever seen so many churches in trailers.
At the 26 mile mark I pulled into the parking lot of a Baptist Church when I spotted a table outside. No one was around. There were also many electrical outlets. I charged up while I ate food I prepared this morning. Thanks Baptists! My new thing is tabouli. All the ingredients are easily available as is hummus and avocados. If I can't find pita bread I use sandwich rounds and make 2 open face sandwiches for lunch. Delicious and I feel like I'm getting good nutrition.
After an hour I got going down Hwy 105 again. The views of Davis Bayou and the Trinity River were terrific. I can feel the influence of Louisiana which is only 2 days ride away. Beyond Batson I turned on Hwy 770 which had even less traffic. I got to say the roads in Texas have been surprisingly good. After Saratoga I entered the Big Thicket Reserve. Being Texas there were also lots of oil and gas drills. Hwy 770 ends at Hwy 326 which I took only a few miles before reaching my destination.
After 5 hours of cycling I entered Kountze. This town has an interesting bit of history. Charles Bilal was mayor of Kountze in 1991. He was the first Muslim mayor in the country. He was also African-American. In Texas no less. I checked into the Super 8 for $53. I also got the AARP 20% discount.
Cleveland to Kountze, TX