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Where To Go Next for Friday, August 1



Today's Travel News

Friday-Sunday, August 1-3, 2008

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Bike Touring: It's All About Geography and People


By Rich Steck

When you're ending the last exhausting 68 miles of a weeklong 450-mile bicycle tour and welcoming you at the finish line is a gravedigger, you sort of wonder if, somewhere along the way, you "crossed over."

Actually, the gravedigger awaiting us was one of the famous monster trucks of the same name. An automotive giant that started life as a modest panel truck that now sits high atop a "monster" chassis with tires as tall as the cyclists who grinned in awe as they pedaled across the finish line.

It was a great way to end the 2007 Cycle North Carolina (CNC) tour from West Jefferson cross state to Currituck on the Outer Banks.

A thousand bike riders, aged two (often napping in a little trailer hitched to her dad's bike) to 84 made the trek during last October's ninth annual CNC ride - 30 riders had made all nine.

Number ten heads out September 27 this year from beautiful Black Mountain and ends a week later on the sandy beaches of Oak Island. Overnight stops will be in Morganton, Lincolnton, Concord, Wingate, Laurel Hill and White Lake. CNC also offers daily jaunts and two- and three-day rides, as well as two days with 100-mile options - they call them "centuries," a great challenge to the 20-something crowd but mostly avoided by the rest of us.



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