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Four Corners - Day 21

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Start Location: Homestead, FL
Ending Location: Homestead, FL
Miles Today: 261
Trip Miles: 6277
States Visited: 23
Provinces Visited: 3
Low Temp: 88 degrees
High Temp: 93 degrees
Min Elevation: -28'
Max Elevation: 73'

Route Map:

We are headed to Key West this morning and our expectationsare not high. We have been there before and don't remember it as a place we wanted to revisit. Maybe we will be pleasantly surprised. The beginning of the trip is not very scenic. The road is lined on either side with trees and it is like going down an alley.

The view improves after about 30 miles. We see some debris along the road left over from the hurricane, but not as much as expected. We go by a store that has an incredible amount of junk outside and I can't imagine what happened to it all when the hurricane came through last week. It must have taken hours to move it all. We also go by a store that sells inflatible toys for kids and think Mike and Karin need them for the pool, but space is limited.

Shortly after leaving Marathon, we come to 7 Mile Bridge. It is just that. There is an old bridge that is no longer in use. They have a very subtle way of taking a bridge out of operation. We need a break, stop along the side of the road, walk to the water and see a crab. It was a lot easier than taking a picture under water of a crab.

A short while later we enter an endangered species area.This is only noteworthy because it is for deer. Just how did the deer get here in the first place. It must have been an awfully long swim. We also see more electrical trucks headed to try and restore power to areas that have been out since last Thursday.

Eventually we get to Key West. It is just as depressing as we remembered. In all fairness, we are not in the best part of town. We did find the monument marking the southernmost point in the US. We also found a place to take a picture to prove we are in Key West. It is just across the street from where we stop for lunch. We didn't take an pictures but there was a lot of local color in the form of homeless people. Near there we saw this truck.

We turn around and head back to Homestead. There are lots of places to rent scooters and bicycles. Rentals must be good because there are people on them everywhere. Then I spot a sign that certainly takes on new meaning this week and reminds us of all the damage and destruction of Katrina. For those of you who are not familiar with this area, there is only one road (US 1)that runs from Key Largo to Key West. With that in mind, I find this sign very strange. Why would you need to identify an evacuation route. I would think it would be very obvious. I see one more sign today that advertised ultralight rentals. The sign says $25, but I'm not sure that isn't for the jet skis.

Several days ago Mark and Deb sent us a picture that Deb took from the back of the motorcycle when they were in Scotland showing herself in the rear view mirror. Without realizing what I was doing, I did the same thing today. I had been thinkng that I would try to do this on a slow picture day, like in Texas, but I will have to think up something else.

There is a terrible smell along most of the route today. We don't know if it is a result of the hurricane washing up debris or if it is always like this.

We are back in Homestead tonight and are trying to plan the next several days. We are having a very difficult time deciding how far north to go in order to avoid all the aftermath of Katrina. We are not sure where those evacuated have gone or where aid workers will be staying. It sounds like there is now a mandatory evacuation for all of New Orleans. I have no idea where all of these people will go. Maybe toworrow night we will know more.