If you're thinking Hick City, think again. To go along with all the natural beauty of Arkansas, Little Rock is a spiffy, energetic, historic and thoroughly modern river-town.
My first stop was River Trail Bike Rentals where my new best bike friend David helped get me oriented and planned the perfect route for BikerBuck's 25th state. (Yup, half-way home as of today.)
The Arkansas River is big, bold and beautiful despite the overcast sky today. And it runs right along Little Rock's downtown, with numerous road and rail bridges connecting the up and coming North side, where I stayed, with the happenin' historic south bank. I took an old fashioned trolley from right next door to my hotel over to downtown and got an historic tour narrated by our indefatigable engineer. The restaurants were jumpin' and there was an all around great vibe from the swank Peabody Hotel to the Cheers-worthy tavern where I had supper and struck up a lively conversation with the traveling liquor salesmen next to me.
Right. Now, where was I...oh the 50k ride. Well I picked up the Trail right across the street from the remarkably affordable Wyndam and headed west to the Big Dam Bridge. And it certainly is. I picked up the South bank trail up to Twin Rivers Island and enjoyed the pristine park with its special treats...
...like this nature park loop that doubles as a jogging trail and great classroom venues for outdoor ed.
Did I mention that Bill and Hilary keep a house in Little Rock? (So he can bop in to his new Library when he's in town and be home in time for supper.) I think that's their place in this photo, on the ridge above the trail.
Where is it written that every nice river or lake trail must be accompanied by a golf course? We saw that in Topeka, and also Iowa and in OK City and near the Fox River in IL, and now Little Rock. I smell a politico quid pro quo. Ya think?
And while we're at it I must confess my own obsession with mansions on river bank ridges. Like in Knoxville, now Little Rock, and lots more you haven't seen. I'll admit I'm a sucker for an ocean view...guess there are lots like me, but with no ocean handy the river will have to do.
I'm in Dover TN tonight, planning to ride a piece of The Trace on the KY part of Land Between the Lakes NRA in the morning. Rain's in the forecast. Welcome to BikerBuck's Water World.