Day 30: Wilmington to Shallotte

After writing this morning’s blog post, I got my things ready and bid farewell to Mary Beth. It was around 8:30 when I started riding south to the Fort Fisher Ferry so that I can take the ferry to Southport. It’s about 20 miles to get there and I joined the East Coast Greenway route not too far from Steve’s house.

Back on the Greenway

I didn’t take my allergy pills for the last two days. This makes me think I’m over the tree pollen areas. It’s also worth mentioning that there aren’t many hills south of Durham. Today and yesterday, the road was mostly flat. And since I’ll be cycling along the coast there shouldn’t be steep hills.

I passed by Kure Beach and arrived at Fort Fisher Ferry at 10:02 AM. I missed the boat by only two minutes! The next one is at 10:45 so I rested a bit.

Kure Beach

I realized that the bike mechanic in Wilmington didn’t screw in the presta valve on my rear wheel and didn’t put on the valve cap. I got lucky that no air escaped. After finding a cap on my spare tire, I put the cap on the wheel.

When the boat arrived, I wheeled my bike on after all the cars went in. I chatted briefly with one older gentleman who had done a lot of cycle touring before. He wished me good luck.

On the ferry

The ferry took about 30 minutes to reach Southport. I cycled a few miles to get into downtown. After looking on Yelp, I decided to have fish and chips again for lunch. This time at the Moore Street Oyster Bar.

The young waiter was curious when I told him about my cycling trip to Florida. I think I must have sparked something inside of him. When I was done with my meal, he brought over the check and told me he already paid half of it. I was surprised, to say the least. This is the third time on this trip that a stranger paid for my meal. The waiter’s name is Brady and he’s 22 years young. I told him that he’ll get far in life because he is so kind.

Brady of Moore Street Oyster Bar

After this delight surprise, I rode out of Southport only to meet with heavy traffic. I rode on route 211, also known as Southport Supply Road, for 15 miles. This road only had two lanes, one for each direction. There was a skinny shoulder that I used, but sometimes the large trucks would me by very closely. Not only that, there was construction on the right side of the road. There were some piles of white powder on the road that every time a car went over it a cloud of dust would fill the air. I also had to be careful of a truck spraying water on the road. By chance, when I got closer to that truck it stopped spraying. I thought about the song “Highway to Hell” by ACDC as I rode on this road, except this is more like highway of hell.

Spilled white powder

I saw a Dollar General store on the side of the road so I stopped to buy a bag of beef jerky and an ice cream bar. I also needed a break from riding on this boring and dangerous road.

After the 15 miles, I made a left turn and cycled on quieter roads until I reached Shallotte. It was 3 PM and I had ridden just shy of 50 miles. So I decided to stay in this town for the day.

Looking at Google Maps, I spotted Mulberry Park. I went over and saw that it has a bathroom and wifi. This might be a good spot to camp for the night. But I was hungry so I went to the Wing and Fish Company next door to get a shrimp po boy.

After my meal, I decided to ride to the fire station to see if I can camp there since it’s safer than the park and I might get to use their shower, if they have one.

A firefighter named Dan, along with the chief, agreed that I can camp by the side of the station, so I will camp there tonight instead of the park.

It was only 4 PM, I rode back to Mulberry Park to use the internet to write this blog post and charge my phone. Not sure what to do until dusk. The town has a busy road that cuts right through it and there doesn’t seem to have anything else interesting. I guess I’ll just have to twiddle my thumb until the sun sets.


  1. Continued thanks for your journal. It’s a great read.


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