Northern Tier 2010

September 1, 2010


Filed under: New York, Section 10 — Henry Scott @ 4:00 pm

I slept for nine hours straight last night. It cooled off considerably, which made it easy to sleep, but the relative humidity must have approached 100% because my gear was soaked from condensation when I awoke. I had a leisurely convenience-store breakfast at the Hilltop Market and got on my way. It was a foggy morning with poor visibility, so I stopped after just seven miles to do laundry and dry my camping equipment in Boonville.

By the time my clothes came out of the drier, the fog was clearing, and I continued toward the Adirondacks. I followed Moose River Road, but I didn’t catch many glimpses of the river until near McKeever — there isn’t much of a town there, but it marks where the route turns onto Highway 28, and where I first got a sense for just how pretty the Adirondacks are. I also started to notice outcroppings of the igneous and metamorphic rocks which form the structural foundation for these mountains.

I also caught up with Arlete at the intersection with 28. She is recently retired and has been following the Northern Tier with her husband, Dick, since May 7th. By riding fewer miles each day they’ve been able to cook just about all of their meals and really take in the sights. After reaching Bar Harbor, the couple plans to spend the rest of their retirement sailing. I felt truly inspired by their story.

From there I rode into Old Forge, which many use as a gateway town for Adirondack activities. It is very touristy and packed with cafes and gift shops. It also marks the western edge of the beautiful Fulton Chain Lakes, which I followed for the next twenty miles.

Along the way I went through Inlet, and I stopped at the library and an outdoor store. I meant for the outdoor store to be a very brief break, but I got to talking with the owner — he was incredibly enthusiastic and provided a wealth of information about things to see and places to camp. He also told me that another eastbound rider was just ahead of me, so off I went, in the hope of catching up.

I met up with Travis at Raquette Lake — he’s riding from Ithaca to Maine. We decided to ride together for the rest of the day and made it to Blue Mountain Lake which, as the name implies, is right at the foot of Blue Mountain.

We’re camped behind the Blue Mountain Inn, where the owner allows cyclists to camp and get a shower for a nominal fee. Soon after we arrived we were joined by Gabriel, a rider on his way back home to Quebec City. As bonuses, the proprietor of the inn brought us some leftover chocolate cake, and we we’re being treated to live music from a group of musicians playing on the porch.

Travis and I are planning to start together tomorrow, but he’s nursing an injured knee and anticipating a short and slow day. I’m hoping to reach Bar Harbor on the 8th because that will give me a couple of days to visit Acadia before my parents meet me on the 10th, so I will likely go on ahead.

That said, I have a little less than 500 miles to go, so my intention is only cover about seventy miles per day for the remainder of the trip. Much of the riding will be over steep terrain, but I think it will be quite manageable at that daily mileage. Although I’m anxious to see Acadia, and return home to Jennifer, it is a bit sad to realize that the end of this trip is so clearly within sight.


1 Comment »

  1. Holy cow! The end is truly in sight! You are awesome . . . enjoy these last few days, take in all of Acadia (I was there in the ’90s) and relish the thought that you’ve accomplished something that will set you apart from the rest of us lowly daily commuters. Cheers my friend. There’s a beer in the fridge with your name on it awaiting your arrival back in The Bend!

    Comment by Bruce Spitzer — September 3, 2010 @ 12:56 am

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