Details for 3 glens

DETAILS:
3 Glens: 88 mi., 4500ft.
Date/Time: Sunday February 7th

Start #1: Carroll Park, meet@ 7:55AM, exit@ 8:05 STARTMAP_CP
Route Map (click EXPORT for GPS files): ROUTEMAP
Cue Sheet (print one, or ask me to bring an extra): CUESHEET

Start #2: Dixon Park/BWI, meet@ 8:55AM, exit@ 9:05 STARTMAP_BWI
Route Map (click EXPORT for GPS files): ROUTEMAP
Cue Sheet (print one, or ask me to bring an extra): CUESHEET

Notes:

  • BWI/Dixon to Lunch is 30 miles w/o stop. There’s a gas station and a McDonalds along Crain Hwy if nec.
  • Wear bright clothing and use lights, we’re in trafficky areas
  • Lunch is here: http://www.newdealcafe.com/food/dinner.php
Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments

February ride and January pics

I’ve got our next Ramble scheduled for February 7th. The plan is to ride a shortened winter version of the 3 Glens ride. We’ll start in Balt. City at Carroll Park and ride to Dixon/BWI to meet up with any riders who’d rather start from there. I re-routed the next stretch, shortening it to 30 miles. The idea will be to go from BWI to Greenbelt without another stop. This should shorten our ride time for the day. The 2nd half of the ride remains about the same. Total mileage is now 88 mi. If you haven’t ridden the route before, HERE is the ride report from when we last rode it in 2013.

I’m still putting together the cue so, details are forthcoming. Hope you can make it.

—-

January’s On Again/Off Again shortie turned out great. Everyone got in a fun ride. We stayed fairly close together, re-grouping often, and enjoying a tasty lunch. Thanks all.

IMG_2448_2

PJ on a soggy Cuba rd.

IMG_2452_2

No lines, no cars. Love it. PJ, Tom and fearless leader.

IMG_2453_2

Monkton station in the AM

IMG_2455_2

1st time Rambler, Steve. Great having you along.

IMG_2456_2

There were loads of beautiful roads like this.

IMG_2458_2

Steve and Tom. Another shot of the Hog barn.

IMG_2462_2

You never know what animals you might see on these rides.

IMG_2464_2

Andrew, bringing peace.

IMG_2465_2

Love these shadows. Southbound after lunch.

IMG_2467_2

Tom’s flat. Ugh.

IMG_2468_2

Andrew wins the style award.

IMG_2469_2

We spent a lot of time winding with the river.

IMG_2472_2

Monkton station. The PM stop.

IMG_2478_2

Too cold for lazing about.

IMG_2483_2

Stormy skies threatened us late in the day.

IMG_2484_2

Yikes! No rain thankfully, but the wind became fierce.

IMG_2485_2

Tom and I took the last few miles easy.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Ramble Time: 2016

On Again/Off Again: Sunday, January 10th

I’m not particularly sentimental about year changes, but I really appreciate passing the solstice and the increase in sunlight. So, I’m excited to get out and explore on bike.

Here’s the deal: I’ve got the On Again/Off Again short version scheduled for us. The ride alternates between short stretches of the NCR/Heritage rail trails and the hilly roads on both sides of the trail. I don’t normally consider this a winter route since the trail’s often un-rideable from snow and ice. But with the mild weather this season, I expect we’ll have fun with it. We should warm up on the steep climbs and enjoy the protection of the trail. Lunch is in New Freedom at Seven Bar and Grill. Start is at Meadowood Park.

DETAILS:
On Again/Off Again: 86 mi., 4800ft.
Date/Time: Sunday January 10th 7:50AM meet-up. 8:05 exit
Start: Meadowood Regional Park STARTMAP
Route Map (click EXPORT for GPS files): ROUTEMAP
Cue Sheet (print one, or ask me to bring an extra): CUESHEET

NOTE: If conditions change, I’ll need to substitute another route.

Sign sez it all.

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

It’s all good.

I lingered a bit longer at the bagel shop in Federal Hill, enjoying my coffee and gazing out the window. There was a guy outside being patient with his geriatric Chesapeake Bay retriever. The dog was not a graceful one, stumbling with arthritic joints. Nonetheless, he managed to wag his tail, give a little squirt to a nearby tree, and look excitedly up the leash to his friend. I think he knew it was a good day to get outside and see what life might bring.

I put on my jacket, helmet, gloves and headed up the hill. No one was near the entrance, but I could see a group of riders in the corner of the park. A lot more riders than I expected. What’s up? Ramble riders? Yep. At ride start time there were 15 riders ready to go.

New faces at the start

New faces at the start

Off we went. First stop: a locked gate at Fort McHenry. I checked my watch to be sure it was after 8AM and then noticed the big sign announcing the new gate time of 9AM. Apparently, gov’t sequestration caused the later open time. Turning around we quickly got onto the harbor promenade rolling along the waters edge. Once on Clinton st, I looked across the harbor to the inaccessible Fort McHenry. I love that you can see many of the points on this ride from previous or later points.

After passing the marine terminals we roll through Dundalk and head to Sparrows Pt. on the long and straight Peninsula Pkwy. The 40 story high Bethlehem Steel furnace is gone, but the remaining property is still striking. The backdrop of the Key Bridge and the mouth of the Patapsco makes a spectacular view into Baltimore’s steel-making history. Another u-turn and we head to the tip of the peninsula at North Pt. state park. The newly renovated jetty gives us a view nearly due east across the upper bay towards the eastern shore. Each of these viewing breaks give us the chance to chat and enjoy the nice December weather. It also eats up valuable riding time while it’s still light. Always a balance. I like it.

Hands up at North Pt. park

Hands up at North Pt. park

From North Pt. we dodge traffic a bit, finding the small roads within the maze of highways in the Essex area. We continue further down the road to Rocky Pt. Here you get a nice view of Cuckolds Pt., around the corner from North Pt. State Park. Directly across the water is Hart-Miller island, a party boat destination in summer months and to the north we see the mouth of Middle River, where our lunch spot lies. Making me hungry.

Rocky Pt. looking south to Cuckolds

Rocky Pt. looking south to Cuckolds

The miles are taking their toll on some of us. It’s a flat route, but with rugged roads, traffic and perhaps too much stop and start. We’ve got more shore line to cover and north we go, across this finger of land and up to Bowleys Quarters on Middle River. Our riverside lunch stop is a good one: Sunset Cove, quiet today, and happy to get the business from a bunch of sweaty bikers.

Sunset Cove Restaurant

Sunset Cove Restaurant

It’s nearly 2pm when we gather to get riding again. Luckily, we don’t have many more miles to go and should be back before dark. Further north on Eastern ave we roll up to Chase, MD and the Hammerman area of Big Gunpowder state park. There’s a nice scenic circle around the park- no need to stop. Out of the park, we roll down Ebenezer and Bird River rds, breaking into smaller groups, chatting and getting lost.

The scenic views are mostly over. It’s just a ride back home. Legs are tired, but Jeff and I make it to the final point, Fells Pt., to get a drink and a plate of oysters. Charlie and Dave join us a few minutes later. Some riders weren’t able to finish the whole ride, but any miles exploring on the bike are good miles in my book. I hope everyone enjoyed their day out. See ya for the next ride, January 10th, route TBD.

 

Fruits de la mer

Fruits de la Chesapeake

 

More pics:

Posted in Point to Point | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Point to Point and repeat.

This Sunday, we ride Point to Point, a cycling exploration of the western shore of the Chesapeake from Baltimore to Chase, MD. Earlier this year, PJ, Tom and I rode this one. I had changed it quite a bit and hadn’t been on many of those roads for years. The new routing and a cold, foggy day made the ride extra mysterious.

15583289794_d8b05e61ce_k

view of Cuckolds Point from Rocky Point

I’ve improved the route since last January, shortening it to 83 miles and changing our lunch spot. If you’ve got the right clothing for late season cycling, but don’t necessarily have the conditioning for a long hilly ride, this is a good flat one. We ought to make it back well before sundown, but you should ALWAYS HAVE STRONG FRONT AND REAR LIGHTS for this time of year. I’ll let you decide whether to linger longer at the scenic spots or get back sooner for a beer in Fells Point.

DETAILS:
Point to Point: 83 mi., 2000ft.
Date/Time: Sunday December 6th 7:50AM meet-up. 8:05 exit
Start: Federal Hill Park STARTMAP
Route Map (click EXPORT for GPS files): ROUTEMAP
Cue Sheet (print one, or ask me to bring an extra): CUESHEET

Posted in Point to Point, Uncategorized | Tagged | 10 Comments

“If you missed it, you missed out” -Dave Hopkins

NOTE: next ramble is Sunday, Dec. 6th. the Point to Point ride. 82 miles along the waterfront from Baltimore to Middle River. Details to come.

Certain Ramble routes just seem to have it all. Every time I ride it, the Pancake Interception is full of adventure, mystery, struggle, beauty, accomplishment, and of course, pancakes. Like reading a favorite book again, you know what happens next, but it’s still so nice to read on.

We had clear, crisp weather for this great Autumn ride. Sam, PJ and myself started from Mt. Washington. Jon, Tom and Moji met us in Sykesville. Dave and Andrew had begun an hour earlier. The long roll on Marriottsville rd early in the morning really sets the mood for this ride. On the steep grind up Henryton rd, I hear squirrels and birds hopping in the dry leaves, and off in the distance, the sound of the Patapsco river rushing. After a quick stop in Sykesville we head off in search of Sam’s Creek rd: a road so pleasant, I’d enjoy riding it in the worst of weather. I follow Moji’s lead through the twists and turns, crunching leaves and bouncing a bit on the unpaved surface. Too much fun. Quickly, we arrive in Union Bridge. Dave, Andrew and a pile of food waiting for us. The Firehouse’s breakfast is always a treat. Also very fun meeting the other groups of cyclists coming from different places.

After breakfast, the long and difficult third part of the ride opens up the distances between riders and becomes, for me, more of a solo experience. The geography opens up to more farmland and less woodland. I always seemed to have Tom or Jon in sight. So nice watching another cyclist far up ahead, parsing the landscape for you. We regrouped quickly at the last rest stop- the ice cream stop, and then made our way back past the historic homes and white fences of Worthington Valley, to Mt. Washington. We were back well before sundown and celebrated with beer and oysters at the the Nickel Taphouse.

Thanks all.

Along Sam's Creek

Along Sam’s Creek

Ready for breakfast

Ready for breakfast

home of the Pancakes.

home of the Pancakes.

So lovely, you barely know you're climbing.

So lovely, you barely know you’re climbing.

Coon Club rd. Look at those colors!

Coon Club rd. Look at those colors!

Tom and Jon in the distance

Tom and Jon in the distance

Horses smell the barn

Horses smelling the barn

 

Posted in The Pancake Interception, Uncategorized | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Back on Track with the Pancake Intercept

The ride this Sunday is the Pancake Intercept, a ride up to Union Bridge for an all-you-can-eat breakfast at the firehouse. Rolling through old farms and craggy woods of Carroll county makes this a great Autumn ride. Somehow, it’s gotten more off-schedule than on. This puts it back in it proper season.

If you’re new to this ride, then you need to know a few things: it’s hilly, not crazy, but taxing for sure. There are unpaved sections on this ride- maybe 5-10 miles total. There can be some gravely parts or sections slippery with leaves, but it’s super fun and beautiful on any bike. You need $8 cash for breakfast. There is no ATM and nowhere else to eat in Union Bridge. The beginning of the ride is quick, in order to get to breakfast in time, the 3rd section is a long stretch with a break in Boring, MD. The last stretch will be familiar Balt. county roads home. Also, you will absolutely need strong lighting, front and rear.

DETAILS:
The Pancake Interception 97 mi., 5900ft. (hilly)
Date/Time: Sunday November 8th 7:50AM meet-up. 8:05 exit
Start: Mt. Washington Starbucks STARTMAP
Route Map (click EXPORT for GPS files): ROUTEMAP
Cue Sheet (print one, or ask me to bring an extra): CUESHEET

Just look at that happy guy!

Just look at that happy guy!

Posted in The Pancake Interception, Uncategorized | Tagged | 3 Comments