Saturday, September 15, 2012

Texas Gap, Vermont S360

breakfast at the Red Hen
back trail through waterbury
back roads from moretown to waitsfield
Mike going up
neat old water works for moretown
old supports for viaduct for moretown
didn't see it
falls in granville gulf
at the bottom of the gulf

gratuitous bike shot #1
gratuitous bike shot #2
Mike on the road to dinner
we'll be in hancock soon for dinner
Texas Falls
gratuitous bike shot #3
my new hennessey hammock, it was great
Mike's tarptent contrail
also breakfast
packing up
hey, this road stops here! guess we'll go back
let's walk a bit

this was interesting on the pacer with 28's
it was
no bridge
but we walked the excavator trail
Also, Mike took a million pictures (98) that you can check out here...

On Friday I took care of a few last minute work details and then I left home around 9:30 am and rode from Plainfield to Montpelier on rt.2. and then along some gravel on the River Road to the Red Hen in Middlesex. It was sunny and cool with a fair amount of traffic since it was a Friday. I had a breakfast of ham and cheese croissant and oatmeal raisin cookie with coffee. My wife observed that it is really all about the food since every time I contacted her I told her where we were and what we were eating but nothing else. She might be a little bit correct on that one.

Then I rode on to Waterbury and met Mike at the green/park and we had a hot dog/chips snack and rode on. We took a nifty little back road/trail to some more gravel as we headed back to Middlesex. From there we took rt 100 to Moretown, opting to skip the hefty climb on the gravel with our camping gear. After a hydro stop in Moretown we jumped onto a nice gravel run down to Waitsfield on Pony Farm Road. From there we headed to Warren on rt. 100. It was getting hot and we both felt foggy so we stopped at the gas station near Warren for water etc. Then we rode straight on to Granville Gulf and up and over.

The ride through the Gulf is beautiful. It is a long gradual climb up and down. There are rocky, clear and cold little streams alongside with numerous pools and waterfalls. After that we rolled on to Hancock and the sun was getting lower. We stopped at the Hotel/Restaurant there (which has amazing brunch) and had a great dinner. We learned from the guy there that we lucked out in that we missed the Rainbow gathering by 1 week. They were up in the gap the week before. Nothing against peace and love and drumming and such but not exactly what we had in mind when we planned a quiet bike camping trip into the National Forest.

Leaving Hancock we rolled west on rt. 125 for a bit and then turned north onto Texas Falls road. Along the way we collected trash for kindling to make a fire. We got a 6 pack holder, some Halloween Peeps cardboard and about 100' of toilet paper. We got to camp and set up our gear. I had a quick second time setup of my new Hennessey hammock. What they say is true. They are comfy, dry and easy. We made a fire and hung out until around 10 and then went to bed. It was a windy night with rain. The hammock barely swayed and was completely dry.

In the morning we ate, drank VIA and then headed out. My Jetboil had a few starting issues which I am attributing to the wind and the free can of demo fuel I got when I bought it which was probably 5 years old. It certainly boiled quickly though. We headed back through the forest on some roads, snowmobile trails and single track. The federal forest land are great. Tons of gravel and nice camping spots. Moose. Pheasant. It was quite an adventure on the Pacer. I couldn't climb the single track but descending was no problem.

I felt great. Mike was riding strong, pushing fat mini knobbies and about 20 lbs more than me and hammering along at 13-14 MPH on the hilly tough roads. Definitely more bike camping in my future.

Monday, September 3, 2012

New World Festival ride...

breakfast yum

breakfast spot

historic spot in Barre

back roads of Barre

back roads of Barre again

power station

back roads of Barre

the Big Dig of Barre

Main St Barre under massive redo

more coffee in Barre

downhill reward into Northfield

Clifton's latest, the Heron

Clifton on Heron

Nice water

Long downhill into Randolph

our kids at the fest
The Irregulars, the young band, really good

Irish VT dance

 This weekend I rode to Barre and met Clifton and we rode on to Randolph, VT for the New World Festival. It is a family friendly Celtic music festival where they close off the street and have music and fun for folks. It was a nice ride and a good time with the families. Our kids have known each other since they were 2 so it's always a nice easy get together. There was amazing music with lots of fiddles, pipes and such. There was a young group that put in a few of their own tunes with a nice twist or 2. Also some great storytelling and puppeteering.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Papa/kid ride...

On the old rail bridge

Trail A Bike setup

Along the rail trail

"did you see those jumps back there!?"

Rusted beauty

Rotting beauty

Rotting and rusted beauty

Resting on the return trip

 We took off on a Thursday morning the week before school started. I played hookey and we rode down the rail bed to town and had breakfast at The Dancing Goat. I had a great breakfast burrito with chorizo sausage from a farm a few miles down the road. Keenan had a great breakfast sandwich with a big sausage patty from the same place. YUM.

It was a perfect day and a great Trail-A-Bike ride.