Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Brownfield in August

Thursday August 2nd, 2012

There are a variety of weather forecasts for Thursday, so let's do the Brownfield Loop -- it has options for long or short versions that you can choose from, depending on your energy level and on the rain threat.

Meet: Maine Visitors Center, Fryeburg. It is on the right, just over the NH-ME border on Route 302.

Time: Ready to ride at 9:00 am

Distance 32 or 21 miles

Longer option: Cross route 5/113 and get some hill climbing on the triangle loop. 32 miles total

Shorter, easier option: 21 miles (does not include the hilly triangle on the east side of route 5/113). There are options to make this ride even shorter if desired. 23 miles if we check out Burnt Meadow Pond for a lunch stop.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Unsettled Weather....Kanc and Passaconaway

Thursday, July 26th 2012 DUE to DARK DAMP WEATHER and THREAT of a SHOWER, don't be surprised if nobody shows up today for the ride..... Looks like there may be some showers on Thursday, but most forecasts suggest that they will be in the afternoon or evening. Some forecasts suggest precipitation earlier. I am going to suggest a local ride that can be shortened or lengthened depending on the sky conditions. Meet at the parking lot behind the Kennett Middle School in Conway Village at 8:30 am. We can go up the Kanc as far as we like, then return via Passaconaway Road. It would be nice to get up to Rocky Gorge or the Russell Colbath House. Total mileage can be from 14 miles up to about 35.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Vermont Side of the Connecticut River, Northern Section

Thursday, July 19th, 2012  9:45 am

The weather forecast looks absolutely fantastic for this Thursday, so we need to do an absolutely fantastic ride to celebrate the return of cooler, dryer, bluebird days. I have been waiting for a perfect day to do this ride, and here it is!!! This ride is my favorite ride. Ride alongside the Connecticut River, farm fields, cows, horses, 2 waterfalls, 2 covered bridges, panoramic views, cross the 45th parallel! History - "The Republic of Indian Stream" which declared itself an independent nation in 1832. We will ride over the 3 rivers involved in this border dispute between the US and Canada. (see links for history, below).

The ride starts on Route 102 in Bloomfield, VT at a parking area just south of DeBanville's General Store. The ride is lollipop shaped, gently going up the CT River to Pittsburg, NH. It then turns south climbing an interesting hill with a 20 mile mostly downhill reward back to the car. The climb is like cranking up a roller coaster, then being released at the top for a fabulous downhill. It has been labeled by a friend as a "Disneyland E-ticket". Ride through Colebrook of the way back, and cross the CT river back into VT for a nice downstream cruise back to DeBanville's Store. Of course there will be a tailwind on the way back.

Distance: 58 miles, mostly flat, one climb. This is an easy 58, easier than many 40 milers we have done!! This is the ride to log your longest mileage of the season, or your longest ever!

Shorter version? OK. Many options because you can do out and back on the VT side of the CT River on Route 102. To Canaan, VT and back is 43 gentle, scenic miles. To Colebrook and back is 27 miles. Ride as far as you like in between these towns, then meet the longer route riders in Colebrook at Howard's Diner for some pie.

Ready to ride at 9:45 am.

Carpool from the far end of the Attitash parking lot at 8:00 am. According to the map app, it should be a 1.5 hour drive.

Directions to the start: Route 302 to Twin Mountain, turn right at the light onto route 3. Drive up route 3 through Whitefield, Lancaster and Groveton. Turn left in North Stratford, NH to cross the CT river into Bloomfield, VT on route 105. Take a left onto route 102 immediately after you cross the river, DeBanville's store is on the corner. Drive under the railroad bridge and you will see the dirt parking area with a kiosk describing the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Park here tightly, as there is not a lot of space. Overflow can be on the NH side of the river in North Stratford. Warning-there is no porta potty here.

The map: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/114661305

For info on The Republic of Indian Stream" check these:


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Thursday, July 12th 2012

"Don't Yank the Krank" Bethel to Bryant Pond, Maine Looks like the weather will be great for a ride by the beautiful woods, farms and lakes of Maine!

This ride will take us from Bethel to Bryant Pond, the site of last hand-cranked telephone exchange in the USA. This little town is also famous for a 3-story outhouse. It also has a convenience store, a larger-than-life telephone monument and great lakeside dining.

But Wait... there's more!!!

The ride is nice and quiet, along the Androscoggin River (essentially a continuation of the North Road experience), fields, farms and forest plus shore side riding on North Lake in Locke Mills. No Notches! This will be a welcome relief from the traffic and noise around the Mt. Washington Valley in tourist season.

This ride starts out of the riverside park in Bethel -- the picnic destination on the North Road ride. The first 12 miles follows Intervale Road which parallels the Androscoggin River as it flows north towards Rumford. We turn east towards Bryant Pond, go through the village, try to find that famous outhouse, pay our respects at the Hand Crank Telephone Monument, then go to the lake for our picnic lunch. The return is by North Pond in Locke Mills, then by East Bethel Road (look for some interesting sculptures on the left), then back to the cars via Intervale Road.

The ride will start at 9:30 am at the Bethel town park on the Androscoggin River at the intersection of the bike path and Route 26 (where we always eat lunch on the North Road Ride).

Drive to Bethel via Route 2 and take a right on Bridge Street, at the flashing light (soon before crossing the bridge over the Androscoggin). Drive about 0.5 mile to the park, on the left at the stop sign.

Ride distance is 40 miles.

Ready to ride at 9:30 am!!

If you want carpool, meet at the Jackson Ski Touring/Wentworth Golf Club parking area across the street from the J-Town Deli at 8:15 am. Otherwise, see you in Bethel!

See map link at the bottom of this post...

Here is some info on Bryant Pond:



"Bryant Pond achieved some national fame and media attention beginning in the mid-1970s when its family-owned Bryant Pond Telephone Company became the last hand-crank telephone exchange in operation in the United States. When in 1981 the local company, operating from a two-position magneto switchboard in the living room of owners Barbara and Elden Hathaway, was purchased by the Oxford County Telephone & Telegraph Company, a nearby larger independent company. A movement called "Don't Yank The Crank" was organized by David Perham and Brad Hooper in a valiant but futile effort to keep their beloved crank phones. The effort was not ultimately successful, and the last "crank" calls took place on 11 October 1983, when a modern dial exchange was placed in service."

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Kezar Lake Narrows 9:00 am

Thursday, July 5th 2012 Let's get away from the traffic in the valley and get off the busy roads. Let's try the Kezar Narrows Loop starting in North Fryeburg. If we get an early start we should have pleasant temperatures. Union Hill Road has some dirt and sand on it, but we can pick our way through it and walk if necessary. I hear that there are mosquitos out there in Maine, so be prepared. Mosquitos? Sand? Can it be worse than July 4th holiday week traffic jams and tourist drivers in their "Rent Me" motor homes? Start the ride at the park next to the North Fryeburg Fire Station (as you know, park away from the fire station where the firefighters may need to park). Ready to ride at 9:00 am. The ride goes through the farm fields via Cornshop, Fish and McNeil, cross the Red Iron Bridge, up Union Hill Road, and over (bearing right at forks in the road) to the Kezar Lake Narrows. Just before the steel lattice bridge at the Narrows and before the snack shop at the Narrows is a narrow road leading to a shady narrow picnic area on the narrow part of the lake. Picnic tables and porta potties are there. Return is is by Christian Hill Road to Lovell and then a short ride on Route 5 to Shave Hill Road and back onto Harbor Road to the parking area. Be sure to stop and enjoy the views before dropping down into Lovell. Total ride is 26 miles, relatively short but you get a few short hills to climb. We should be done before it gets too hot.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Bartlett 4th of July Parade

I just returned from CT and have not had time to put together a good ride for Thursday yet....stay tuned, I will post it tomorrow. In the mean time, if you have never been to the Bartlett 4th of July Parade, it is worth a trip. What a hoot!! It drips with small town charm. Lots of fire trucks, old cars and "floats". Miss Mt Washinton Valleys in tiaras perched in convertibles. It starts at 11:00. This is a big deal --- they actually close route 302 for this event, causing a huge traffic jam of confused, surprised and cranky tourists (and locals). But the show must go on! Best way to see this spectacle is by bike. If you want some entertainment tomorrow morning, meet at the Attitash parking lot at 10:15 am, ready to ride, at the far end of the lot in the shade. We can ride over to Bartlett Village before 302 turns into a linear parking lot of annoyed drivers. We can see the festivities and parade, and get a bowl full of strawberry shortcake made by the church ladies, and then ride River Road until 302 relaxes. Maybe next year Thursdaybikers can enter the decorated bike contest.