The Southern Georgia Cotton Picking Good Time Weekend

Thanksgiving Weekend is a special time for a lot of people in the United States. Friends and families travel – or not – to assemble for a meal, socializing and a nice respite from the drudgery of working a regular job. I’m no exception to that rule. I may be an Australian bloke who has made a life here in the US of A, but I do imbibe in many of the customs, including Thanksgiving – or Friendsgiving as I prefer to call it, considering I don’t have any family in the United States.

I spent my Thanksgiving day with many good friends – thank you, Esther and Bryan, for hosting! – and generally ate too much, which is part of the Thanksgiving / Friendsgiving traditions. For those who are fortunate and not required to work, Thanksgiving day and the Friday that follow are often paid holidays, which is the perfect segue into a long weekend. For some, part of that long weekend is about early Christmas season shopping or scoring a deal from one of the countless Black Friday sales offered up by retailers. For others, it’s about getting away from it all. I tend to fall into the latter category.

In the back of my mind, I’d made some loosely formed plans to head out of town for a couple of days, namely to explore more of Southern Georgia, USA. If you didn’t catch it, I spent the prior weekend on a bike packing / slack packing ride, the Sasquatch 125 / 200. It was hard to ignore the blooms of the cotton fields during that ride, which inspired me to ride more of the area, but on routes of my own design. My routes normally incorporate as many dirt and gravel roads as possible, which may or may not include the crossing of some private land – which is another reason I seldom upload my rides to Strava. I don’t need people following in my tracks and potentially getting into trouble!

Following my Thanksgiving day chow fest, I hurriedly packed the Lynskey PRO GR review bike, clothing, cameras, food, a pile of other crap and a car camping bed, into my trusty Honda Element for a late night departure. Rolling out of Gravel Cyclist HQ around 11:30pm with a two and a half to three-hour drive ahead of you isn’t necessarily wise, but waking up uber early the next morning doesn’t always appeal either.

I’ll spare readers the specifics of my logistics in this article, but allow my photos to tell the story of my two-day getaway.

The Southern Georgia Photo Essay – Day 1

Not just a ride, but an opportunity to capture footage for a bike review.

Another review item. Atom Composites carbon wheels.

Cotton harvest time.

A super smooth, super hard packed clay road.
Way off the beaten track.
Way off the beaten track part two.
Sometimes, you have to go bush bashing.

At left, vultures / buzzards circling.
Late in the day.

Black birds!
Car camping, but a wee bit messy just after a ride. Reorganized later for sleeping.

The Southern Georgia Photo Essay – Day 2

Railway line, dirt and gravel road and a sweet machine.

Gateway to the Enchanted Forest.
But first, you must cross this rotted out bridge.
The Enchanted Forest.
Pecan groves.
A whole lot of cotton.
Abandoned railway tracks. A rare sight in the USA.

Another amazing day of riding draws to a close.

There may or may not be a video produced from this trip. It all depends on how much time I have available.

Thanks for reading!

12 comments on “The Southern Georgia Cotton Picking Good Time Weekend

  1. Some very nice pics JOM. Coming from a farming background and actually living on a family farm I must say that I have never seen a cotton bale. All we have up North here is hay and straw bales. When I retire in 2 years I see a road trip down South to ride with you some weekend. I might also have to get some pointers on how you get all that stuff in the back of your car. lol Is that gravel traveling 101?

  2. Jom was going to ask if you were riding by yourself how did you get those pics? With the drone? Nice report and some lovely pics. Glad you can enjoy some of our American traditions like stuffing yourself too much on turkey day. I didn’t do that this year but glad you had a great Thanksgiving.

    1. Larry, photos were a combination of drone video captures, smart phone and my GoPro. Much of the video I took is going to be used for a future review of the Lynskey PRO GR.

      The funny thing about Thanksgiving… I don’t eat meat, but enjoy pigging out, veggie style haha.

  3. Ok, we need to saddle up the team (and a few other nutty friends) and ride with you up there. That cotton bale looks like a giant Twinkie.
    Ok, off to find Twinkies now………

    Snack Dogg

  4. JOM, K-Dogg any chances of you guys saddling up the team and doing a ride down South somewhere on the weekend of Jan 20th – Jan 21st. I would be flying down Jan 19th. I have a vacation day to use and a Southwest Airlines voucher to use up(yes it has to be somewhat close to somewhere Southwest flies) I probably should have all the bugs worked out of my new Raleigh Roker by then. Weather forecast here is in a week and a half of Pa. turning into the tundra land highs in the low 30’s during the day and low 20’s at night. So yeah I looking froward to a trip down South.

  5. Close to me in my thinking would be within 100 miles of an airport.


    1. Larry,
      check out the GC calendar for January 20th. That is when The Tour of The Quilt Country #5 gravel ride (not race) happens here in Gainesville Florida. Perfect timing. Jacksonville Florida it the closest airport but Orlando or Tampa/St. Pete may be cheaper.

      I am trying to convince the team to do the January Dead Man Grave 2 in Mississippi
      the same day but it is a long drive.

  6. Thanks K-Dogg as the only race I saw was the Everglades 100 which was only a metric ride. I am not flying to FL. for a metric ride. I have until something like March 18 to use the voucher up. What is drawing you to the Dead Man Grave 2 ride in Mississippi? Will check both rides out. Thanks

    1. The Tour of the Gravel Country gives you the choice of 60 or 100 miles. It is usually quite windy. You will be tired as it often turns into a contest if not a race.

      Dead man 2 draws us because new races don’t draw the same talent as old races…thus there are lots of people there who suck more than we do. 🙂

      I’m just sayin’


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