If you had told me a few days ago I would have spent the night on a boat during this trip, I would have laughed. To be honest, it still seems surreal that I have spent the night on a boat whilst on a camping trip, but that’s what happened. Let me explain………..

I pulled into a town called Grand River, I still had a couple of hours cycling planned but I thought it would be nice to stop and grab an ice cream. A nice Magnum or similar is just what I fancied to power me down the road.

Upon entering Grand River I realised the town was quite touristy so decided to go looking for postcards too. Which is when I met Mike and Cindy; Mike and Cindy are a month into their 12 month sailing trip around America, the Grand Loop. We had a brief chat about our respective trips and Mike and Cindy invited me to spend the night with them on their boat Aurora . As I was well into my day I decided the 20 remaining miles could wait and accepted their offer (you can follow Mike and Cindy’s adventure at

Me, Mike and Cindy

It seems there is a hidden community of boaters in the USA, all undertaking the mammoth journey that is the great loop.

After freshening up, I accompanied Mike and Cindy to a “Docktails” event.. I understand this is a nightly event, all the ‘loopers’ (i.e. people doing the Grand Loop) bring along their own drinks and sit around and have a chat. I was presented to the group and had a magical night hearing all about everyone’s journeys and recounting a few of my tales from the road. I was welcomed with open arms by the group and this night will be another treasured memory from my trip.

After my night with the loopers, It seems that cyclists and sailors have a lot in common. Like all the other cyclists I have met, everyone has their own individual journey and experiences; no day is ever the same so somebody doing the same route a day later will have a completely different story to tell. Oh, and we spend a lot of our days seated!

Me, Holly and Aurora

Writing this blog, I just realised I never did get that ice cream.

Me and Cindy aboard ‘Aurora’

Our friend Richard Boxhall (@richardonabike) is currently cycling 5,000 miles across the USA to raise money for ShelterBox UK and is currently blogging about life on the road, the places he sees and the people he meets . 

You can read a full account of his travels at

Support Richard Here

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