Sep 14, 2009 - Bicycle Ride Reviews    Comments Off on Riding Smithville to Silver Point – great ride ALMOST!

Riding Smithville to Silver Point – great ride ALMOST!

Spent the weekend in Smithville celebrating Duke’s birthday.  As many times as I’ve been to Smithville, I’ve always wanted to ride from town out to Silver Point and back via SR56.  So, I did it this weekend and I don’t know why I haven’t ridden it yet!
TN SR56 zig zags north-south through Tennessee.  The section I rode is from Smithville to Silver Point, which is a exit on I40, BLOS is probably a C, wide shoulders, very curvy, 55mph speed limit, moderate traffic.  The road is pretty much flat from Smithville to the descent to Hurricane Bridge  then a long ascent to small up-and-down.  About 16 miles one way to Silver Point, there’s a picnic table by the Rose Garden Meat-n-three for a rest stop.  Only complaint is the driveways crossing the shoulder on 56 are humped, so each driveway has a bump to cross.  No rumble strips yet.
What a great ride, almost!  As the sun was setting, I turned around, completed the very fast descent back towards Hurricane Bridge.  My bike computer was removed, but I looked over and a passenger in a car waved at me, not passing me!  When I reached the bottom of the descent, I stopped on the bridge and enjoyed the view.  You really can’t do this in a car.  It might even be illegal.  I realized again that being out on my bike and experiencing something like this is really what makes me happy.  But the ride wasn’t perfect…
After ascending teh 2.5 mile gradual climb from Hurricane Bridge, I continued on with little incident.  I was cruising along, about to reach Smithville, taking the middle of a very wide shoulder, a SUV swerved, crossing over the white line into the shoulder and blew its horn, barely missing me.  Of course the driver was harrassing me, but he didn’t realize that he had put me in serious danger.  I thought I saw where he had turned off.  I made a few passes up and down some roads but luckily I never found him.  With this kind of behavior, we have some advocacy work to do around Smithville.
Anyhow, it was a great ride regardless of the a$$hole, and I hope more folks will give it a shot as a simple but challenging ride while visiting the area.  Donna and I left Smithville by car this morning and scouted some backroads southwest of Smithville, which should make for a beautiful loop with Snows Hill mixed in.  I’ll give it a shot and post a report next time I’m over there.

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