We crossed from Ashland, West Virginia into Kentucky and were transported into a Kentucky world of it's own. Peaking hills and mountians that are so beautiful they often caught my attention long enought to put me in the ditch.
Shortly after entering into Kentucky, we realized that the dogs here were not fenced or tied up as they had been in past states but that they were allowed to run free and chase what or whomever their little doggy hearts desired. One occation stood out to both David and me. We were riding along hwy 80 (I think) when a gang of three dogs caught our pungent scent and started sprinting towards us barking in unison. Our habit during these most frequent dog chases has been to not look or speek to the offending canine. This usually would ward off a chase past their property line. In the case that the dog/s make it to our heals, we would scream together "go home!" which seems to do the trick. Well this Kentucky group of three wasn't having it and they continued to chase us from the opposit side of the road. Before long, as it is quite common in Kentucky, a six wheel truck came barrelling down the opposite side of the road. David and I both tried to communicate with him to slow down and that there were dogs up ahead. I assume that he took our elaborate jestures to mean "we are cyclists, don't drive fast beside us". Naturally the motorist sped up. I quickly everted my animal loving eyes but didn't have time to plug my ears before i heard what could be best described as an animal exploding. His two doggy friends made it out unscathed but I know one cyclist chaser who will not live to chase another day. Perhaps a good reason to contain our pets.
Our first stop in Kentucky was Carter Caves where they were asking $18/night to pitch a tent. It was 6pm with rain forecast for the evening but I would rather bike all night than pay $18 to sleep. I thanked Dorene, the staff member but told her that we don't pay for camping and ventured back outside to break it to David softly that we weren't done biking yet. Seconds later Dorene asked me to come back inside where she advised me that she would let us stay for free and because of Huricane Sandy (which had slipped our radar), she advised us to take two free nights. Dorene is an animal lover who has done a lot for stray dogs in the area, usually finding them homes with guests at Carter Caves. She works with an organization called "Help for Animals". You can find out more about the work they do on their website www.helpforanimals.net.
As if free camping wasn't enough Dorene spoiled us with warm breakfast, extra rain clothing and dog food. Milo even got a wool sweater.
From Carter Caves we went westwards but in rainy conditions we didn't get further then Morehead, or Rodburn Recreation area to be more specific. Washrooms, running water and a Picnic shelter to pitch our tent under, what more can one ask for? We love Kentucky! Xo H