No. We’re not going to the Decoy Festival.
Sunday, the 6th of June. 7:50 meet up, 8:10AM push off.
Start: Canton Park. see here: http://tinyurl.com/283ejec
I was lucky to get in the “pre-ride” for the next Ramble on a stunningly beautiful spring day last month. So, I am biased in claiming that this ride is the prettiest I’ve routed yet.
It’s got everything except a visit to Grandmother’s house.
Ride ingredients include:
• 109 miles. You’ll be on the saddle for about an hour longer than our last ride, M2M.
• About 6,000ft. of climbing. Not a whole lot more than M2M however, most of the hills are in the last 20 miles. One of the worst being Satyr Hill at mile 97. You don’t need to mention it here, Isaias has already called me an “effin’ sadist” for that one.
• Start is at Canton Park. There are bathrooms, but they always seem to be locked. If necessary, you can relieve yourself at or on the nearby Starbucks. Easy parking, if absolutely necessary.
• Typical of my rides, the first and last 5 miles are urban riding- kinda harsh, kinda trafficky, kinda glassy. Outbound, we will be headed through the older industrial areas of SE Baltimore and the working class neighborhoods that abut them. You’ll get nice views of Charm City over your shoulder on the way out of town.
• Soon after crossing over Back River, we’re in the eastern ‘burbs of Essex. A few miles further, and we’ll be seeing fields of young corn and soy along Bird River and Vincent roads.
• This same alternation of working class suburbs and farmland is most of what we’ll get on our outbound stretch. We parallel the Baltimore National Pike and ride through the covered bridge on Jericho rd. We duck into lush protected woodlands, brush past the Bush River, cruise through Aberdeen and make a fast descent into the home city of the Decoy Museum, Havre de Grace, MD for our lunch break.
• Your dessert after lunch will be the 2nd worst hill of the day. It’s not steep, but it is a long grind up and out of HdG to the north. Really we’re just cresting a big lump of land separating the headwaters of the bay from the lower Susquehanna. The descent down to the river on the other side is as beautiful as it is rollicking and transitions to a long flat stretch running next to the river. The ascent away from the river is nice and gradual.
• At this point the ride gets really interesting. What that means is “WARNING: BOB IS TAKING US SOMEWHERE CRAZY” We cross the bridge over Deer Creek and quickly drop down to a beautiful stretch that runs along the creek. Most of this section is paved, but some is not. 1/3 mile along Glenville and 1.5 miles along Harmony Church are the unpaved parts. They are flat, hard-packed dirt with occasional loose gravel. It’s not difficult or dangerous (even if wet), but must be taken at slower speed. The day I rode it, it was just too beautiful to take out of the route.
• We abruptly come out of the woods and into the bright sunlight and the farms and suburbs near Bel Air, including a long and lazy section along the East West Hwy.
• Veering south we snake through Baltimore County, a few more hills, and numerous horse farms eventually dropping into Loch Raven.
• The aforementioned Satyr Hill rd gets us up to Harford rd, taking us into the city, past Patterson Park and back to the harbor in Canton.
I hope our weather is at least half as nice as it was for me during the pre-ride. You’ll like this route. I’ll buy the first round at Mahaffeys after the ride.
What you looking at?