Entries for month: October 2011
The state ferries that cross Puget Sound can be a quick and affordable way for bicyclists to escape the urban sprawl and enjoy a rural retreat.
Although these ferry rides are relatively short, I always feel that I've been deposited on a faraway shore with all my cares and worries left behind.
Last week, I rode down to the Seattle Ferry Terminal to begin an overnight bicycle tour to the Key Peninsula, a rather isolated part of the lower Kitsap Peninsula. How isolated? A barista I spoke with near the town of Home said she'd lived there 32 years and was still considered a newcomer.
We cancelled this trip once. Originally scheduled for March, the plan was to get a group campsite at Falls Lake State Recreation Area and invite some folks to pedal the 20-ish miles out to the lake with me. But the fickle North Carolina spring shifted quickly from unseasonably warm to seasonably miserable so we pulled the plug and successfully averted a cold and wet bike overnight. The people with NC State Parks were quite accommodating, and we were able to reschedule for early June, a timeframe that was nearly certain to be a bit more pleasant. "More pleasant" turned out to be an understatement. We saw a repeat of the March weather pattern, unseasonably warm through the week ending in a seasonable weekend, finding that it is a far better formula for a June camping trip than it would be for a March trip. In fact, we enjoyed perfect weather for our bike overnight.
First, I came up with a tour. Next, I invited some buddies to come along. Then, I worried.
The tour grew out of my fascination with a historic tale and trail: the three-month trek of Mary Rowlandson, who, kidnapped by Indians in 1675’s King Philip War, walked with them to the far reaches of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. After years of research, I had pieced together enough of their route to create a four-day bike tour.
I finally got out for my first bikepacking overnight. This is something I had originally planned for early May or June, but with the weather we have had in New Hampshire this spring, this was my fist chance to actually get out and give it a shot. I loaded up the Fargo Thursday night in preparation of leaving straight from work. I kept the concept of this one pretty simple. I was headed to Pawtuckaway State Park to spend the night and then meet my friends, Mia and Martha, at Wallis Sands for a day of lounging on the beach. I figured worst case scenario was that I would suffer through one night and then sleep in my own bed the next night. Turned out the whole thing was a total blast!
When Norma was a teenager — long before bike touring was common practice — she and seven girlfriends took a multi-day bike trip on heavy cruiser bikes.