Northeast - Route from Manhattan to Provincetown (through Orient Point/New London Ferry)
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07-19-09, 05:11 PM
I apologize if this is already posted, but I haven't been able to find a route through the search functions.
During the first week of August, I want to ride from Manhattan in NYC to Orient Point in Long Island, then take the ferry (with my bike!) to New London, CT and continue through RI and MA to Cape Cod and out to Provincetown.
I've been able to piece together parts of routes (Suffolk in LI is easy), but if anyone has existing maps, cue sheets, etc. that might help, I would really appreciate it.
Many thanks! :)
07-19-09, 06:16 PM
>>>....then take the ferry (with my bike!) to New London, CT and continue through RI and MA to Cape Cod and out to Provincetown.<<<<
Have you searched older threads on this discussion board with regard to routes from New London into Rhode Island. I've posted mine a couple of times and others have improved on it.
Also, if you're not married to riding across Long Island, I prefer the Connecticut shoreline (and I'm a Long Islander). Have you considered it?
07-19-09, 07:46 PM
Thanks for the quick reply, Papa Tom. I'm afraid I am committed to the Orient Point route, as I need to meet up with folks out there first.
I'm also afraid that I've literally spent the last two hours searching on this site -- maybe I just don't know how -- but if you can provide any links or more details for the New London into Rhode Island ride, I would be in your debt.
The Five Boro Bike Club has a Day ride (http://5bbc.org/rides.shtml)listed on their website for this past Saturday, Manhattan to Greenport. Maybe if you contact the leaders, firstname.lastname@example.org, they'd be willing to share a cue-sheet.
07-20-09, 06:21 AM
Thanks, Stacy. That sounds like a great tip. I'll follow up and let you know how it goes.
Anyone else for the New London to Cape Cod piece -- or New London to Providence, and then Providence to Cape Cod?
07-20-09, 06:43 AM
In checking over old posts, I realized that the discussions about riding north from New London are scattered all over the place. Here is my basic cue sheet starting from the New London ferry terminal. Note that my rides are often extended to take in waterside views. Where I detoured to Scenic Rt. A1A, you can always just stay on Rt. 1.
Pt. 1 (New London to Atlantic House Hotel in Narragansett - A nice location, right on the water.)
Exit ferry lot, cross RR tracks, make 1st right onto Water Street.
Next right onto Crystal Avenue to State Pier Rd. Make left.
At Mill Street (unmarked right that goes under parkway and passes Olde Towne Mill), make right.
Make first left (end of road) onto Cole Street.
Follow Cole to Williams Street.
Right onto Williams to Bailey Circle (Mr. Gs Pizza in 2002). Left to bridge path.
At end of bridge, make sharp left onto Rt. 1.
Take Rt. 1 ~17 miles to Westerly. At Westerly, bear right and follow signs to Rt.1A
At ~ ½ mile, bear right at fork onto Main.
At 2.5 miles, make left onto Winnapaug (aka Airport).
At 1/10 mile, bear right to stay on Winnapaug. Continue 1.5 miles to waterfront.
Make left and pass Misquamicut Beach area. At Wawalcom (snack bar) go straight into residential area on Weekapaug (uphill!).
At end of public road, make left onto Noyes Neck Rd.
Go ~1 mile, pass farm on left, to STOP sign (Rt. 1A - no sign), and make right.
Follow Rt. 1A ~ 1 mile to Rt. 1.
Continue ~2.5 miles to Texaco Station and convenience store. Fill up water bottles!
~ 7-8 miles, pass Ninigret Park, look for sign that says Rt. 1A Old Post Rd. NORTH (its the 2nd one dont get on Rt. 1 SOUTH!!!)
~1 mile and reconnect with Rt. 1 around Charlestown.
~ 8 miles to Wakefield. Look for sign: Narragansett/Point Judith.
Exit and make right onto South Pier Rd. Cross Rt. 108 and continue all the way to the water. At stone well, turn left to Atlantic House Hotel.
Of course, you can skip Narragansett and continue on Rt. 1 toward your destination. I prefer to move on next to Newport ("Rack-n-Ride" service on buses required to cross bridges) and then to the East Bay Bike Path, which goes from Bristol, RI to East Providence. I haven't ridden beyond there.
Are you set with the Long Island portion of the ride? If not, here's a good alternative to 25A and/or the Long Island Expressway (495) service road between Woodbury and Port Jefferson:
Woodbury Road to Pulaski Rd. 13 miles to Rt. 25A in Kings Park.
2 miles to fork, straight onto ROSE STREET
To LANDING AVENUE. Make RIGHT
2 miles to EDGEWOOD in Smithtown. Make LEFT
2 miles to 25A
4 miles to fork in Stony Brook. Bear left
½ mile to fork. Bear RIGHT and stay on 25A
5.75 miles, pass Setauket, into Pt. Jefferson
From Pt. Jeff, you can either piece together some small streets to stay near the shore, or you can just get on 25A all the way to Sound Avenue, which will take you to Orient Point. Stock up on liquids and other necessities before you get to Eastern Long Island, as the services thin out significantly once you're on Sound Avenue.
As far as the Manhattan to Nassau County portion, I would take the 59th Street Bridge and then use one of the avenues in the 20's to get to the Flushing Bay Promenade, which begins across the Grand Central Parkway from LaGuardia Airport and dumps you near Main Street in Flushing. From here, because a recent construction project pretty much eliminated a safe route over the Flushing/Northern Blvd Bridge, you'll have to ask someone how to get on 25A/aka Northern Blvd heading east. This will be a bit taxing, as downtown Flushing (Chinatown) can get pretty busy.
Once you're on 25A, there's a way to get to another bike path along the Cross Island Parkway. I'd have to reverse my directions to present them to you, so let me know if you are interested before I do it. (Sorry, it's just a really busy morning. Otherwise, I wouldn't bother to question whether you really intend to use this route!)
07-20-09, 07:31 AM
What a generous reply, Papa Tom! Thanks so much for taking the time and effort. I particularly like the Narragansset suggestion, as previously I was looking to go up to Providence from New London and down and around (i.e., ride East Bay in the Providence to Bristol direction). But you are correct -- research shows that the #64 bus runs pretty regularly (except for Sundays) to get me across the various Newport bridges on the RI "rack and ride" program, and I think that will be preferable and prettier. But I'll skip East Bay in the Bristol to Providence direction, as that will really take me away from my final destination.
Thank you for the offer, but no need to describe the Cross Island Parkway path -- I do have the 2009 NYC Bicycling Map, which covers paths as far East as the Queens/Nassau border. It's always been the Nassau portion of the ride that has struck me as problematic....
Last piece -- Anyone with suggestions for getting from Bristol, RI to Provincetown, Cape Cod?
This is a great forum -- once my ride is done, I'll make sure to come back and post my full route for the benefit (I hope not detriment!) of all.
07-20-09, 07:58 AM
>>>once my ride is done, I'll make sure to come back and post my full route for the benefit (I hope not detriment!) of all.<<<
Please don't forget! I usually bring a small digital voice recorder on these trips to record modifications to my route, places to stop, etc. But then I never seem to get around to copying these into my cue sheets or posting them on the forums!
If you need some help with Nassau County, feel free to ask away, as that's where I live. You can also e-mail me through my web site, listed in my signature.
With regard to the hotels in Narragansett, Atlantic House and Ocean Rose Inn are both kind of dumpy, but the location is primo. Atlantic House has a deck on the second floor that looks right over the ocean. Across the street and a short walk away is the Coast Guard House, where you can enjoy a breezy, scenic lunch or dinner on the upper deck. Around the corner, Crazy Burger serves up some good vegetarian food. Sometime during the summer, the Narragansett Lion's Club has a big outdoor festival within a few blocks of these hotels. There's usually a great band and lots of beer. The beach at Narragansett, also just a short walk or ride away, cost $5 for the day a few years ago. It may be $6-7 now, but it's a great beach.
Note that the ride from Narragansett to Newport is short, but very hilly. The Best Western in Newport is a bit of a distance from the downtown area, but it's about the only fairly affordable hotel in the area.
Are you SURE you can't meet your Long Island friends somewhere other than Orient Point? Perhaps they'd like to take a nice ferry ride across the sound and meet you in New London? My 2001 ride along the Connecticut shore to Narragansett was probably the best ride I've ever taken!
07-20-09, 08:05 AM
Papa Tom, you're tempting me! I could be convinced to do the CT shore ride -- do you have cue sheets or general directions that I could be follow? Where did you start from?
Please post any cue sheets or information in this thread. I find this ride to be very enticing!
07-20-09, 09:10 AM
Stacy, your tip on 5BBC came through. Thanks again. I'll ask whether they would be OK with my posting their cue sheet -- but if not, others at this forum could email them as well for the NYC (actually, Kew Gardens) to Greenport route.
Good folks over at 5BBC!!
07-20-09, 09:51 AM
I did this ride in two stages: The 2001 ride was from Bridgeport, CT to Newport (and on to the East Bay Bike Path). A few years later, I rode a short distance from Bridgeport to Darien, CT to visit my son. Being that you are coming from Manhattan, you can either ride Long Island as far as Pt. Jefferson and take a ferry from there to Bridgeport, or you can get to Darien, CT from Manhattan (someone else will have to help you with that!) and then reverse my directions to Bridgeport. From there, my directions will get you to
Pt. 1: Bridgeport to Darien (REVERSE THESE TO GET FROM DARIEN TO BRIDGEPORT!!!)
Ferry Access Road south, becomes RR Avenue. Follow RR Avenue east 1.5 miles
Turn left on Fairfield Avenue and go 4.5 miles to Pequot
Turn left on Pequot and go 1.5 miles to fork. Bear left onto Beachside Avenue
1.2 miles and turn right onto New Creek
Quick left onto Greens Farms Road
2.5 miles and bear right/straight onto Bridge Street
½ mile, cross water and turn left on Riverside Ave
Go under 95 and make right onto Charles St/Park St (Rt.136)
At fork, go left on Park.
Bear left onto Sagatauk Ave (becomes Winfield St)
2.25 miles to East Ave (E. Norwalk train station)
Left on East Avenue to Van Zant Street
Right on Van Zant and go ½ mile to Ft. Point Street/Washington St
Left on Fort Point, 7 miles to Flax Hill Road
Left on Flax Hill Road and go 2.5 miles (becomes Old Kings Hwy) to Rt. 1 in Darien
NOTE: Rt. 1 will probably be the road that leads you much of the way to Manhattan.
Pt 2: Bridgeport to
From ferry, cross water at Congress Street
Look for Crescent Ave. after crossing and continue north
At end of Crescent (1 mile) turn right, ½ mile to Connecticut Ave.
Left onto Connecticut, ½ mile to Hollister
Right onto Hollister
½ mile, go under Rt. 95 and bear left onto Lordship (113 south)
1 mile to Access Road
Left on Access road
1 mile to 113 North
Left on 113 North
1.5 miles to Rt. 1
As you enter Milford, look for North Street and head south (right). Name changes to Plymouth Place, then Prospect Street before you reach Rt. 162 North.
Make a left on 162 North. From here, you can start Googling shoreline routes, a tool I didn't have when I planned my trip. As a result, I missed a lot of coastline views. Basically, you will pass through the quaint little New England towns of Branford, Indian Neck, Pine Orchard, Leetes Island, Madison, Clinton, Grove Beach, the Lymes, Old Saybrook, Black Hall, Sound View, Niantic, and Waterford before reaching New London, where you can pick up with the directions I posted earlier. After New London, you've got Mystic, with it's seaport museum and historic drawbridge (skip Mystic Pizza), Stonington Village, Westerly, Misquamicut Beach, Narragansett, Newport, etc.
Of course, one man's lifetime daydream can be another's lifetime horror story, so speak to others about this before taking my word for it. I've ridden both the north coast of Long Island AND the south coast of Connecticut to reach New London and I much preferred the CT route. Sorry, fellow Long Islanders. The main difference is that there are more water views and cool Sound breezes to catch on the Connecticut shore.
With regard to meeting your Long Island friends, Port Jefferson is a much nicer place to get together for lunch or drinks than Orient Point. Perhaps a good compromise would be to ride Long Island as far as Pt. Jeff, meet your friends, and make your Sound crossing there?
07-20-09, 09:55 AM
The other thing I forgot to mention....
If you have some time while you're on the Cape, take a ferry to Martha's Vineyard and ride the great beach path there. Details are on my website, listed below.
The Cape Cod Rail Trail is nothing spectacular, but there is another bike path along a river, right under one of the main bridges leading onto Cape Cod...can't think of the bridge OR the river...I never rode this path, but I'd like to some day.
Also, the last time I was in Provincetown, I had to buy a sweatshirt. I guess it's something about the ocean up there that creates a pretty good chill, even when the weather elsewhere on the cape is in the 80's and 90's.
07-20-09, 10:06 AM
Papa Tom, thanks once more for all your suggestions and help. I'll definitely now research the CT route more thoroughly and then decide which way to go. I've ridden from NYC to Larchmont pretty painlessly (in terms of route), so getting to Darien shouldn't be too much harder...
07-20-09, 01:04 PM
There's someone named RumRunner on this forum who has been writing about riding the Cape Cod Rail Trail recently. He/she might have some info for the Massachusetts portion of your trip!
08-24-09, 09:22 AM
Thanks to everyone for their help! I completed this ride on August 8th (taking 6 days and covering exactly 400 miles) and ended up going through LI and taking the New London ferry (although, if I were to redo it, I would try the CT shoreline as Papa Tom recommends). I've put my rides on Map My Ride as 3 separate routes (2 days each). The routes are not perfect (I'd strongly recommend taking/having Google Maps with you on your phone to check your bearings), but it was great fun! Here are the links:
08-24-09, 10:19 AM
how did that dip in the bay feel at the end?
08-24-09, 12:38 PM
The maps look a little screwy to me, but it appears you pretty much used my routes from Syosset to Port Jefferson, then North Country Rd/Sound Avenue to Orient Point. The route on the map deviates pretty significantly from it at some points, but I assume these are errors with the program, rather than mistakes you made on your ride. Otherwise, you went WAY out of your way in some spots!
I also see you opted to pass through Narragansett, one of my favorite riding destinations. Is that a cool waterside ride, or what? Unfortunately, it's pretty much the last view you get until you reach the bridges to Jamestown and Newport. Did you visit any of those restaurants I told you about?
Regardless, I hope you enjoyed the trip and your short visit to Long Island.
08-24-09, 03:25 PM
I kept a diary and emailed it to my friends -- thought I'd share some impressions with the rest of you:
Dear Family and Friends (sounds like a t-mobile ad):
Time for a brief first report from the road on my way to Cape Cod by bicycle. I'm writing from the relative tranquility of the Swan View Manor in Cold Spring Harbor, LI - the location of my first overnight stay - and where I arrived at around 3 pm today.
Let me say first that the room is very pleasant and, more importantly, has a lot of hangers and places to dry things (including a sun lamp and hair
dryer) - a very essential need today!
Started reasonably at about 7:30 and headed out over the Queensboro Bridge, with a clear threat of rain, but not much actually happening. A lovely start. Who knew NYC had so many (and so well-marked) greenways? Queens was a total delight - not something I'm used to saying every day....
Nassau was a different story, as the heavy storms arrived and the greenways disappeared. Flooded roads (which hid the potholes and pushed you away from the shoulder), non-stop pouring rains, and a shorted-out odometer (so mileage markers were not determinable), were a bit of a test, but once I hit a certain threshold of wetness (and I certainly did), further wetness/rain kind of becomes irrelevant.
VERY glad I put new tires and brake pads on before leaving. I have never had such good wet weather control on a bike.
How did one survive before google maps on your phone? Notwithstanding my best efforts with zip-locs, my cue sheets got pretty soggy, with the effect that I definitely made a few wrong turns here and there. But, pull out google maps on your mobile and you can find out where you are with a push of a button, and then scroll or search to find where you want to be. Truly remarkable and invaluable! The only downside is my phone got pretty wet from all the usage (water under the screen - ugh), so I hope it holds out for the rest of the trip.
Feeling physically very good and looking forward (hoping?) for better weather tomorrow - and a good meal tonight.
50 miles down and about 300 to go!
Yours from the road,
Here's Day 2:
Today's report will be brief because I'm kinda whupped. Total mileage was 70 miles (OK, 69.8, but are you going to begrudge me the round up?), going from Cold Harbor Spring, LI, to our weekend home in Mattituck, LI, where I will be "roughing" it for the night.
No rain. Hurray! Hot sun! Hmm, mixed blessing - definitely more fatiguing in an odd way - both the prolonged exposure to the heat (I started today at 8:30 and arrived a tad past 4:30) and the lack of adrenaline from not constantly having to navigate treacherous rainy conditions. But don't mistake me - I'll take the clear skies (tomorrow's forecast - yes!) every time - it's ultimately much more pleasant.
Don't let anyone tell you LI is completely flat. Some serious hills today, made more serious by traveling with fully loaded panniers (they add about 20 lbs). Did learn that when a road has "Landing" or "Hill" in its name, there is usually a solid geographic (or should I say, topographic) reason!
Only mechanical issue of the day occurred about 3 miles from the end, when a rotational clicking noise began that definitely shouldn't have been there. Fortunately, all it was was a wheel spoke reflector that had worked its way loose and was flicking the chainstay with each revolution. A quick shove back into place, and a tighten of a screw, and voila. Would that all mysterious bike noises were that easy to diagnose and fix!
Tomorrow should be an interesting and challenging day. First, about 25 miles to get to Orient Point, the tip of the North Fork, to catch the one and a half hour ferry ride to New London, CT. Then about 50 miles more until evening lodgings near the shore in Warwick, RI.
Until then, be well everyone.
Yours from the road,
And Day 3:
This will be a tough day to beat. Gorgeous weather, good roads, polite motorists and lovely seaside and farm vistas.
It didn't start off too great, as I managed to somehow mangle the setting of not one, but two alarms - proof once again (which will not come as a surprise to the lawyers among us) that mental acuity diminishes when the body is exhausted.
I had wanted to make the 8:00 a.m. ferry to New London, so given the 22 mile distance from where I was staying in Mattituck, I was planning on a 5:40 a.m. departure (which included time for breakfast and buying a ticket). Instead, I only just woke up at 5:40 and found myself scrambling (not eggs) to make it. My legs were surprisingly fresh (fueled only by two quickly-wolfed power bars, alas), and I got there in time while covering the distance at a respectable (albeit not Tour de France) 16 mph pace.
It was quite foggy for this portion - not just your typical morning mist.
But it made the ride kind of magical, as the sun was up, trying to cut through it, and the mists hung over North Fork sod farms and vineyards.
I made an important adjustment overnight by shedding about 6lbs of weight - no, not me, I've been trying that forever without much success - but from the bicycle or, more precisely the bicycle load. Basically I left behind my locks - which I hadn't used to date (taking my prized machine into every deli I stopped at) and consolidated everything else into a single pannier, abandoning the other. I also abandoned the maps of Queens and LI that I had already used, as well as a small, but surprisingly heavy chain rivet remover (let's face it, if I ended up having chain problems, I was heading to the closest bike shop).
The difference was remarkable - both physically and, I suspect, psychologically. But the hill climbing today (where extra weight really makes a difference) was a lot easier, and not because the terrain was any kinder. Maybe my legs are also getting into bike shape!
The ferry crossing was uneventful, except the fog was so thick the visibility could not have been more than 20 feet. Let's hear it again for radar (we passed very close to - and very slowly by - a number of other large boats).
New London, however, was sunny - and the bike path across the river well-marked (see photo at midway point). Then down into Groton, past multiple General Dynamics sub and other facilities - all with strict warnings about trespassing and taking pictures. Very much a downtrodden feeling to the area - and yet lovely, empty streets, right next to the water (when there wasn't a defense facility in the way), delightful for biking.
Speaking of which, let me say a word in praise of CT drivers. They really know how to pass a bicycle on the road! They wait for an opportunity, and then pull out and pass. Maybe those "Share the Road" signs really educate?
By contrast, and at the risks of both showing my rank prejudices and potentially offending some, if not all, of you, my experience is that PA plates are the worst (aggressive, fast and close), followed closely by NJ (clueless) and with very erratic and hard to predict performances from NY plates. MA plates are right up there in bike passing etiquette with CT - a theory that will be tested in two days - and RI Plates only a notch below.
The biking through CT and into RI was consistently good and charming - enough so that I added about 10 miles of alternative routes to go on smaller roads or get closer to the water.
Mystic, CT was thoroughly charming, with some great ice cream (no, I didn't sample the pizza). Watch Hill, RI is a bastion of privilege like I have rarely seen - let me just say that there is no recession apparent among the lawn care workers there, whose vans and trailers were in evidence at just about every other estate. But it all made for great biking - empty, meandering roads and beautiful vistas (not just estates - see other attached pictue).
Got to the Admiral Dewey Inn (est. 1895) in Manutuck (not to be confused with Mattituck) at around 4 p.m., having covered 75 miles in all for the day (yes, rounded up again!). Immediately went for a swim in the Atlantic and then chilled out on the beach.
All in all, not a bad day!
Yours from the road,
08-24-09, 06:13 PM
>>>New London, however, was sunny - and the bike path across the river well-marked (see photo at midway point).<<<<
I couldn't find your photo. Have they actually MARKED a bike path that leads from the ferry to the Gold Star Bridge? You used to have to know some secrets to find it!
Did you, by any chance, ride the loop around Mystic Harbor? Stop in Stonington Village (just north of Mystic)? Visit Misquamicut Beach?
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