Day 22. Nashville, Tennessee.
Solo in Tennessee. Time to leave our great little campsite in Tellico Plains, and continue to Nashville. We had agreed to meet our Airbnb owner between 3 and 4pm, so we decided that Jane would head straight to Nashville while Mark rode 50 miles in the opposite direction to get his tyre changed.
Mark was escorted back across the Cherohala Skyway by Rich, Paul, and Mike from the neighbouring cabin, and went for a big American breakfast with them while the tyre was replaced. Apparently the tyre was worn down the canvas by the time he got to the garage, and was put on the 'pile of shame'. He then headed back up the Tail of the Dragon (again) and continued to Nashville via the interstate, getting drenched in a thunderstorm on the way.
Meanwhile I headed west along Route 68 towards Crossville. I think this is the first time I've ridden on my own, since learning to ride (other than a few short trips).
As I headed out of Tellico Plains I hit the first straight road for about 10 days. Unfortunately we're leaving the Appalachians now, so it's going to get a lot flatter and straighter for a while.
After about 75 miles I reached Crossville. I was surprised to find that despite leaving at 8:45am it was only 9:15! Although I hadn't seen any signs, I'd crossed from Eastern to Central time, so had gained an hour.
Like most medium-sized towns we've visited, there wasn't much in Downtown Crossville, but I did find a nice coffee shop. Somehow my sat-nav managed to re-set itself to walk mode while I was stopped, which caused a few problems finding my way out of Crossville. It was predicting 20 hours to Nashville, and trying to take me down gravel tracks. Once I figured out and corrected the problem things got a lot easier, and I was soon on Route 70 - the 'Promised Land' Byway. The name seemed a bit surprising as the scenery was relatively uninspiring compared with recent days, but apparently is a reference to the route followed by the early settlers.
I stopped in Smithville to fill up the petrol. I usually go into pay for the fuel while Mark fills up both bikes, so I didn't actually know how to use the pumps - luckily the local sheriff was also filling up and came over to help!
The final bit of the journey was a bit of a challenge as my sat-nav lost reception!
Anyway, we both made it to Nashville in the end.
Tonight we went to the Grand Ole Opry - a live country music radio show which has been running every week for about 90 years. Lots of cowboy hats and boots!