1-It’s the off-season!
Lodging is cheap in Corolla NC; free hot cookies are available at the hotel, roads are empty, bicycle trails are empty and the routes for riding are unlimited. We began our ride 5 miles north of Duck, and headed north along Route 12 following what appeared to be a bicycle trail. Then, we deliberately got lost.
2-Maps aren’t needed
But it didn’t take long to take a right and a left and leave the bike trail behind to just wander along deserted roads. I confess, I created a bicycle route, to get from point A to point B. Thanks to the unlimited opportunities to just wing-it, we turned off the digital maps and just meandered. Eventually we returned to our bike trail, but not before gazing at the scenic views of Currituck Sound, and listening to the ocean waves crash ashore.
Yes, we made note of the few coffee shops with an ‘open-for-business-sign’, but who needs coffee when you can visit historic Corolla, take a walk-a-bout in a Currituck Park with stunning views of a vast waterway that is no more than 5′ deep, and enter into wild horse territory — if only, by accident. Our bicycles tried their hardest to fit the requirements of a 4 wheel all terrain vehicle, but in the end, the 2′ deep soft sand won.
4-One with nature – what’s not to love?
We rode for hours, not a care in the world about ‘what time is it’, experienced tailwinds, headwinds and several micro-climates (10 degree drops in temperatures the closer we rode to the ocean), breathed in deep doses of salty air, occasionally saw the sun and mostly saw clouds and none of that mattered one-bit, because we were outdoors, one with nature, and all life-cares disappeared.
5-No, just kidding – it IS about the food! (and coffee)
We stopped riding just before the rains arrived, and landed at a coffee shop. It met all of the basic requirements – (a) it was open for business (b) the coffee was strong and bold and (c) it was part-hippie-used-bookstore, so sipping coffee had an educational component.
But coffee was just the precursor to food, and we found a Duck dive called Roadside that took art, hippie, food quality and customer service seriously. The bar has been set high on Day 1 — Biking the Banks during the off-season.