Monday, June 28, 2010

Franconia Notch Bike Path

Thursday, July 1

The weather forecast for Thursday looks good (for a change...), so lets do an "away" ride over the hill to Lincoln and Franconia Notch. There have been requests for this ride over the past year or so and Thursday looks like a great day for it.

The bike path is wonderful - a paved path though the woods, great views, interesting stops along the way (view of where the Old Man used-to-be, The Basin, The New England Ski Museum, climbers on the sheer cliffs, the lakes, Cannon Mt.).

For the longer ride (approximately 32 miles), start out of the Loon Ski Area parking lot, ride on a quiet back road in residential Lincoln avoiding the busy Main Street (Pollard Rd; turn right of the Kanc by The Common Man Restaurant), then out onto Route 3 by Clark's Trading Post. Ride up Route 3 by the 1950's style motels and cabins and Indian Head to The Flume parking area where the bike path begins. It is about 6 miles to this point. The bike path starts at the upper, northern end of the parking lot; turn left as you enter the lot and ride up to the entrance way.

The bike path IS NOT a rail trail - it IS NOT flat - it will be a great use of all of the gears that you have on your bike. There are some short sharp ups, and short sharp downs, some sweeping turns, bridges and tunnels - all lending itself to a wonderful Disney World attraction for us. The way back is a smiling mostly downhill cruise. This is a great time of the year to ride this, as there are not many tourists, walkers, baby carriages, etc. on the path to get in our way!

For the shorter ride, just do the bike path. It is about 19 miles round trip from the Flume parking lot. Turn around earlier if you like.

For the Longer Ride: Ready-to-ride at the Loon Ski Area parking lot at 10:00 am

Enter the Loon parking lot at the Main entrance (by the train engine), cross the bridge then bear left up towards the main lodge. There is lots of parking available on the right side of the lot.

For the shorter ride: Meet the longer riders at The Flume Parking Lot near the bike path entrance between 10:45 and 11:00 am.

Carpooling: Meet at the Attitash Parking lot at 8:45 am to load up. Pull out of the lot NO LATER than 8:50 am. Drive to Loon via Bear Notch Road and the Kanc.

There are bathroom facilities at The Flume and at various parking lots along the Bike Path. There is a snack bar/ice cream near the Ski Museum at Cannon Mt. but I am not sure if it is open yet. Bring water, food and snacks for a picnic either at the Ski Museum or by the lake.

This should be a great day!

Here is a map:

View Interactive Map on

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Weather Issues, Again. Ride Cancelled

Thursday, June 24th

Sorry I am taking so long to decide what to do about tomorrow's ride. I just refuse to believe that there can be bad weather on a Thursday for 4 weeks in a row. I have been checking for a good forecast, but I am afraid that no matter what I plan, we will get hit with showers and thunderstorms. So, I give up, and I am cancelling the ride for this week.

Stay tuned for next week!!! We have to have good weather!!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

What will the weather be?

Thursday, June 24th

Tune in tomorrow evening for the info on the Thursday Ride. The weather forecast is not cooperating -- again!! Can it be 4 weeks in a row??? I hope not!! Hopefully tomorrow's forecast will make it easier to put together a ride plan....

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

June Wildflowers in Randolph and Jefferson

Thursday, June 17th

8:00 am update:

RIDE CANCELLED! How about tomorrow??
The weather just won't clear early enough for this ride today.

Anyone want to do it tomorrow on a beautiful sunny day???
Meet at the Jackson parking lot, across from the J-Town Deli at 9:00 am on Friday June 18th.

New Ride!

If you have not been up in the Randolph-Jefferson area lately, you have not seen the amazing displays of lupine, daises, wild iris, and an assortment of yellow, red and white blossoms. I just have to put a ride up there for this Thursday, as it is well worth the visit.

The weather looks good for this ride. The rain is over early and the clouds will clear out completely as the day goes along. It is worth some clouds in the morning for the scenery on this ride!

I decided to test out a new route, to stir up some adventure and to try to ride by some of the best displays of panoramic scenery and lupine fields in the area. The ride includes the entire length of Valley Road, a hidden treasure, running in the valley, parallel to Route 2 but without the traffic. Valley Road lacks pavement for about 2 miles. but the riding on it is just fine (better, in fact, than a lot of pavement we have around here...). Durand Road is a terrific ride also, lined with summer houses from the 30's and their nice gardens.

The start is on the other side of The Mountain, towards the Randolph end of the Pinkham B Road. There is parking right next to where the Presidential Rail Trail crosses Pinkham B. Pinkham B was recently graded, so the dirt portions are good driving (or riding, if you want to add a hill and a few extra miles to your day). The pavement portions are as usual, pick-a-path. Access Pinkham B road from the Dolly Copp Campground entrance off of Route 16.

As you drive down the hill on Pinkham B and come out of the woods, where there are 2 houses on the left, the rail trail crosses the road at a public works department building. There is parking on the left side near the rail trail. If you don't want to do Pinkham B, drive route 16 to Gorham, follow it towards Berlin and take a left on Route 2 at the traffic light. Go up the hill and down the other side (being glad you did not have to climb it on a bike...). Just after the hill flattens, Pinkham B Road will be on your left. Take the left and drive about 0.5 mile to the parking area near the rail trail on the right.

The ride will go down Pinkham B to Route 2, crosses Route 2 and enters Durand Road, a scenic quite road parallel to Route 2. If you have hiked the Randolph Mountain Clubs trail systems, you have likely used the many trialheads on this road. At the end of Durand Road, we ride Route 2 on a wide shoulder for a short distance then have to deal with 0.25 mile of road construction. The good news here is that there is a flagman directing traffic on a 1 lane road, so we can go through as a group and have to road to ourselves. It is packed, quite smooth dirt.

Immediately after the construction, Valley Road is on the left. We ride Valley Road our to Jefferson Meadows. We can then decide whether to do some extra miles and ride up to Jefferson where we typically go for lunch at the convenience store/gas station (longer ride option), or we can lunch near the Israel River Campground and stop at their snack shop.

Start time: 10:00 am ready to ride at the parking lot on the west end of Pinkham B Road

Carpool: Meet at the Jackson Ski Touring/Wentworth Golf Club parking area across the street from the J-Town Deli at 9:15am.

Ride length: 26 miles

Longer option to Jefferson store: 32 miles

View Interactive Map on

The Durand Road area is rich in history, particularly for hikers.

For an interesting view of Randolph, the link below has a chapter from The History of Coös County, New Hampshire by George Drew Merrill; Syracuse, N.Y.: W.A. Fergusson & Co., published in 1888

For an interesting history of hiking in the White Mountains, which highlights the Randolph area and its inhabitants, check this link:

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Rain in the Forecast for Thursday: Ride Cancelled


Yes, unfortunately, again.
I am cancelling the ride for the second week in a row.

Get the work done around the house and enjoy the outdoors on Friday and Saturday!!

For Saturday - check out the Velo club ride -- it is the "Beautiful Brownfield" ride that starts out of the Maine Visitor's Center on route 302.

Here is the info copied from the velo club website:

Saturday Club Bike Ride- click on June 12th.

Mike and Denise Saches:
Start time 9:30Place:
Maine Visitors Center, Fryeburg. It is on the right, just over the NH border on Route 302. It looks like a railroad station - has bathrooms.

Ride: 23 miles, (can be 18 or 30)

It is about 5.5 miles on Haleytown Road to the intersection with Hampshire Rd. Ride to the intersection with route 113 and you have about 9 miles. Turn right onto 113 for about 100 yards, then right again on Pig Street (flattest road in town), back to Hampshire (also called Main Street), then, at about 11 miles, bear left onto Merrill Corner Road (NOT Dugway Road. Merrill Corner if after Dugway, just before crossing a bridge). This is a gradual uphill grade (good early season spin).
Shorten the ride about 5 miles by staying on Hampshire and riding back to Haleytown -- but you miss the views!). Turn left onto Old County Road for another gradual climb, then a right onto Sam Brown Hill Road. Enjoy the view and the downhill! Right onto Porter, right onto Hampshire (at the bottom of Asparagus Hill! Smile, you won't be climbing it!), then left back onto Haleytown to the parking lot. There are options for a longer ride..which will be discussed at the start.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Ride Cancelled for June 3rd

Thursday June 2nd

The forecast for Thursday contains showers and thunderstorms. It looks like a storm in the morning, and it is not clear to me from the weather forecasts when it might clear up for a ride, so I give up! -- I cancel the ride for tomorrow.

I wanted to set up some fun away rides -- like the Franconia Notch Bike path, Sugar Hill and the Vermont Side of the Connecticut River - if there is good weather for next Thursday, I will set up one of these rides!

Also, if anyone is interested in a 1 week supported bike tour in the Adirondacks (July 17-24)-- check this site:

This tour is run by the same group that does the Bon Ton Roulet (in NY State, around the Finger Lakes). Tom and I and Jackie and Lisa did the Bon Ton Roulet last summer, and we will try the Adirondack tour this year!