the Big and Beautiful Holtwood Conowingo Loop

The Holtwood Conowingo Loop


“The ride was hard work, but if it was easy, just ole anybody would do it!!!”   -Tom Fedewa

“Bob,  Yer an effin sadist.” -Isaias O’Daniell

Tom, Isaias and I cruised out of Baltimore on Easter Sunday in bike ride perfect weather. We put 110 miles of road under our tires and climbed over 10,000ft while rolling through some stunning views of Baltimore, Harford, Lancaster and Cecil counties.

This is tough terrain to be riding through. No matter your choice of roads from back country single lanes to wide shouldered multi-lanes, you are still moving through very hilly terrain. We had some wild speedy descents, but always knowing we’d have to pay for it on the way back up. So yeah, this ride was hard work, but there were a whole lot of plusses that made it all worth while. Here’s some:

1. This is definitely the right weather in which to be attempting a 10k+ century. Not too hot not too cold. We had sunny skies all day.
2. Winds were not too bad (maybe 10-15), but in the right direction- in our face outbound and our backs heading home.
3. There were some fantastic vistas along the way: deep rolling farmland along Sharon and Sharon Acres, “top-of-the-world” views of the Susquehanna valley from River rd in Cecil county, historic stone houses south of Delta, PA, and dark green meandering valleys along Cosner rd.
4. Great ride buddies: Tom and Isaias were in great physical shape for this ride and were willing to put up with the unrelenting menu of sharp climbing that this ride gave us.

There was a friendly bit of group misery at the last rest stop in Fallston. The convenience store there was closed for Easter. I was lying on my back on the sidewalk, Isaias was giving emergency treatment to his various cramps and Tom was over-heating and worried about where to get water. It all worked out and we all felt good to have accomplished it.

I’ll make a couple of changes to the route before I ride it again. And, I think I would ride this again, just not till next year.

Next Ramble is “Monument to Monument” on May 2nd. Don’t miss it.


About randoramble

long distance bike rider
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