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  1. #1
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Some VERY MODEST New England Bicycling?

    My wife and I (I am 66yo and the wife is 68yo) are planning a trip to see the fall foliage in Vermont, NH, Maine, etc., around the end of September. I bike about 4,500 miles per year and the wife about 1,500.

    Our current plans are to fly to Boston, rent a car and do a motel tour. So, we would also like to bicycle, and are considering purchasing a couple of WalMart bikes in New England with a bike carrier on the back of the rental car. We would just give away or dump the bikes after our about 2 week tour. Anyone ever get a bicycle rack with a car rental?

    The kind of riding we would be doing would be very modest. Perhaps 10 miles around a lake or down a back road or exploring a small town or something similar. No 30 milers nor speed contests nor anything like that. No "Bike Touring."

    So, some questions:

    1. Anyone here from the New England States who could comment on the possibility of bicycling in the rural areas of NE? Somewhere I heard that either Vermont or NH is bicycling friendly (bike lane and road shoulder-wise) and the other is not.

    2. Anyone have any other suggestions for us in any dimension on this issue?

    This is all new to us. I have never been to New England, and the wife has only been to Maine once for a funeral.

    Your ideas will be greatly appreciated.
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  2. #2
    Dog is my co-pilot 2manybikes's Avatar
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    I do centuries all the time in RI and and southern mass. This is one of the flattest places around. Lots of good cycling. The highest point in Rhode Island Is 900 plus feet. The best is probably Martha's Vineyard Mass., an island. (google it for a bike path map and information, you can rent a bike on Martha's Vineyard.) There is a RI state bike map you can request on line. (Bike R.I.) I have a really nice Rubels map of Massachusetts and all below Boston and out to the cape where I ride. People think my local photos are from N.H. and Vermont. It's less hilly here than N.H. and Vermont. They have lots of good cycling too. Using Boston as a base is a great way to do some riding. Cape Cod has lots of nice cycling.

    Send me a P.M.

    I can link you to some of my ride photos.

    Google "R.I. East Bay Bike Path" to see my local area. There are links to it on "Bike R.I. too.
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  3. #3
    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    I'd look at the Adirondacks. I've done some nice rides into the park (I live on the northern edge), many of the roads are shouldered out for bicycling.



    Lake Placid is a mecca for the tri-guys during the summer, there are a couple of shops right in town. MAybe you could call and inquire as to rentals.
    This is Africa, 1943. War spits out its violence overhead and the sandy graveyard swallows it up. Her name is King Nine, B-25, medium bomber, Twelfth Air Force. On a hot, still morning she took off from Tunisia to bomb the southern tip of Italy. An errant piece of flak tore a hole in a wing tank and, like a wounded bird, this is where she landed, not to return on this day, or any other day.

  4. #4
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    DnvrFox,

    The color in NE will be way up north in late September, and even there I have been told that Columbus Day is the big weekend for leaf peeping. You may want to make sure you get your reservations early, especially if you plan on being there for that weekend!

    FYI - There is a regular poster from New Hampshire in the Classic & Vintage forum that seems to run across bikes somtimes that he rehabs... maybe he could help hook you up with a source... If nothing else, he might have some good advice on riding locations in his area. He is pastorbobnlnh.

    Also, the apples in New Hampshire are wonderful. There are obviously many varieties, and if you have never had one, there is one called Honey Crisp that is wonderful and sweet, but I hear they don't store very well... However, you are going there at about the right time, you should find some freshly harvested.

    Enjoy the trip, and if nothing else turns up, maybe I could be convinced to drive up and loan you a couple of bikes for the time you are there, and of course find some pie.

    ... Darwin
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  5. #5
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2manybikes
    I do centuries all the time in RI and and southern mass.
    Thanks for your thoughts.

    We did Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard by car and walking several years back, and we pretty much have our hearts set on VT, NH and Maine. Pastor Bob is a regular visitor to the 50+ Forum, and I am sure he will chime in sooner or later.

    Apples - sounds yummy!
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  6. #6
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dobber
    I'd look at the Adirondacks.
    Thanks - we will check them out. Too much to do in a couple of weeks!
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  7. #7
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox
    Pastor Bob is a regular visitor to the 50+ Forum, and I am sure he will chime in sooner or later.
    It is so hard to remember all of the interconnections... I do remember that I run across him in more than one forum now.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  8. #8
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Hi,
    New England starts at Fort Kent and ends several hundred miles away at the NY border in Conn.

    Pick an area.

    If you are lucky, the leave may be turning, and there is a lot of pretty countryside to meander through. Be warned that leef peepers clog the roads but don't watch where they are going. They also book the better places months in advance.

    So let's get you started. There are several towns that can be destinations on your trip. Bar Harbor and Camden in Maine are a couple. Middlebury in Vt is another. North Conway is one. Pretty much the whole of the Cape in Mass.

    In many of these places you can rent bikes. In Bar Harbor you can rent pretty good bikes to ride the famous Carriage Trails. This is lovely any time of year, I like fall up there a lot, the crowds have left, but it's still gorgeous. If you decide to go there I can reccomend some places.

    Cape Cod can get quite unpleasant in the fall, that ocean breeze that is so wonderful in the heat of summer is just as effective at drawing the heat off you
    in the cool of fall. If it's still warm, then it's an option.

    Some ski mountains run their chair lifts and you can ride to the top.

    About your question.... some roads are bike friendly and some are not, and that I would imagine is true in any state.

  9. #9
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by late
    Hi,
    New England starts at Fort Kent and ends several hundred miles away at the NY border in Conn.

    Pick an area.

    If you are lucky, the leave may be turning, and there is a lot of pretty countryside to meander through. Be warned that leef peepers clog the roads but don't watch where they are going. They also book the better places months in advance.

    So let's get you started. There are several towns that can be destinations on your trip. Bar Harbor and Camden in Maine are a couple. Middlebury in Vt is another. North Conway is one. Pretty much the whole of the Cape in Mass.

    In many of these places you can rent bikes. In Bar Harbor you can rent pretty good bikes to ride the famous Carriage Trails. This is lovely any time of year, I like fall up there a lot, the crowds have left, but it's still gorgeous. If you decide to go there I can reccomend some places.
    Current thought is to find about 3 bases and spend 3-4 days at each, as we do not enjoy packing and unpacking every day.

    Rent bikes at each location as appropriate.

    Bar Harbor sounds great as do the carriage trails. Lots to do there.

    Conway is on the bus tour, so it must be ok.

    Middlebury?

    Others?

    Yes, we will make the reservations ASAP. We are not fans of B&B's, but enjoy Comfort Inns and related. As of today, they still had rooms available. ChoiceHotels (Comfort, Sleep, Rodeway, etc.) has great 60+ rates (cheaper than the senior rates, but not always available, and you must book through their 800 number, not on the internet.)
    Almost gone from the 50+ forum. - Email me at dnvrfox@aol.com for another fun new group of 50+ folks

  10. #10
    Dog is my co-pilot 2manybikes's Avatar
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    This is nice, just do a piece of it if you want it shorter. We did Mass to Maine along the water and back, it is very scenic. Route 1 A

    Ride photos.

    http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/dad029...AUGLFBaKEdwpLN
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Shemp's Avatar
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    If you're used to riding your own bikes THAT much, and you can afford to just buy and dump bikes, wouldn't it make more sense to ship your own bikes to yourself?

    Anyhow, the ACA Green Mountain Loop is mostly easy with some modifications and still a couple climbs, but motels may be interesting to come by in parts. With enough planning, there are plenty of B&B's to supplement motels, but that time of year, any room is going to be hard to come by I would imagine.

    We just did that loop a week ago, and the Vermont drivers were incredibly courteous, but if you go for fall foliage, you're going to have a lot of non-attentive out-of-state peepers to contend with.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Shemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dobber
    I'd look at the Adirondacks. I've done some nice rides into the park (I live on the northern edge), many of the roads are shouldered out for bicycling.



    Lake Placid is a mecca for the tri-guys during the summer, there are a couple of shops right in town. MAybe you could call and inquire as to rentals.
    I just drove down that road on my way home from Vermont last week... the road surface is much more suited for mountain bikes these days!

  13. #13
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    OKAY - Ready to start booking motels.

    Here is our planned itinerary. Any thoughts or comments?

    Itinerary for New England Trip

    September 20 - Air to Manchester, stay in Manchester

    September 21, 22 - Pick up bikes from Rev Bob. Saty in Rockland Maine - ferry to North Haven Island, state park, explore along coastal villages

    September 23, 24, 25, 26 - Bar Harbor Maine - Ferry Trips, Carriage Roads, Free tour bus, Day Excursions

    September 27, 28 - North Conway - Cog Railroad to Mt Wshington, Railroad trip(s). Scenis Highway 112 to Montpelier.

    September 29 - Montpelier and visit Stowe (My wife is a Sound of Music nut)

    September 30, October 1 - Middlebury VT

    October 2 - Woodstock, VT

    October 3 - Return Bikes, stay in Manchester

    October 4 - Leave by air for Denver
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  14. #14
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    As to bikes, you might consider spending extra and going with Dahon folding bikes. Or pay the same and get Downtube folding bikes (the sell direct from ebay).

    Make sure you know how to replace a tube, and have the tubes and tools. Consider flat restisting products like Mr Tuffy (these can be tricky to install, have the people you buy them from install them), Slime tubes, or better tires.
    2000 Montague CX, I do not recommend it, but still ride it.
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    Wieleder CARiBIKE (folding), decent frame.

  15. #15
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geo8rge
    As to bikes, you might consider spending extra and going with Dahon folding bikes. Or pay the same and get Downtube folding bikes (the sell direct from ebay).

    Make sure you know how to replace a tube, and have the tubes and tools. Consider flat restisting products like Mr Tuffy (these can be tricky to install, have the people you buy them from install them), Slime tubes, or better tires.
    Thanks - we are going to borrow bikes from a member of the 50+ forum in Manchester. As to tubes, etc., I am pretty knowledgeable in those areas. I appreciate your response!
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  16. #16
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    September 20 - Air to Manchester, stay in Manchester

    September 21, 22 - Pick up bikes from Rev Bob. Saty in Rockland Maine - ferry to North Haven Island, state park, explore along coastal villages

    Eat at Moody's Diner in Waldoboro. It has a website. The Walnut Cream Pie is
    not to be missed. If you stay at Camden we always stay at the Cedar Crest, nice pool. There is a very short hike up Mt Battie (it's a big hill) but the view in the very early morning can be quite nice. Nice sporting goods store just south of town.



    September 23, 24, 25, 26 - Bar Harbor Maine - Ferry Trips, Carriage Roads, Free tour bus, Day Excursions

    Have lunch at the Jordan Pond Teahouse, Popovers and chowder, trust me on this. We usually ride the carriage roads, starting there, and eat when we are done. If you like mexican, Miguel's is the best in Maine. Two Cats is a fancy breakfast joint, large cups of very strong coffee, and good biscuits. Very filling,
    but good. Don't plan on hopping on the bike immediately after eating there....
    The internet cafe in town has excellent goodies if you like coffee and dessert.
    Now, if you like beer, find Lompoch's and try the Blueberry Ale, I know, just try it.


    September 27, 28 - North Conway - Cog Railroad to Mt Wshington, Railroad trip(s). Scenis Highway 112 to Montpelier.

    We usually stay at the Conway Grand Hotel, but there are a number of nice places. There are a number of LL Bean outlets, one in Conway, and Freeport,Portland, and one just outside Acadia. You can find some good bargains if you're lucky. Conway used to have a couple great restaurants, but they're gone now. Most are good, nothing jumps out at me. I do like the Indian restaurant there. Another among the reasonably priced is the steak joint next door to the LL Bean outlet, typical family restaurant. The better ones tend to be pricey. There is a Pearl Izumi outlet in town.
    There is a 10 minute hike on the Black Cat trail behind town that overlooks the valley. It is the best view for 10 minutes of walking you'll find. The Kancamangus Highway starts nearby, and is one of the prettiest roads in the state.

    September 29 - Montpelier and visit Stowe (My wife is a Sound of Music nut)
    Ben and Jerry's tour!

    September 30, October 1 - Middlebury VT
    Really nice restaurant overlooking the river just around the corner from the movie theater. I don't think the town has motels, but there are B+B. It has 2 bike shops. You are not terribly far from Fort Ticoneroga, and that is worth a visit. First restaurant as you come into town on the way to the Fort is very good.


    October 2 - Woodstock, VT

    October 3 - Return Bikes, stay in Manchester

    October 4 - Leave by air for Denver

  17. #17
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by late
    September 20 - Air to Manchester, stay in Manchester

    September 21, 22 - Pick up bikes from Rev Bob. Saty in Rockland Maine - ferry to North Haven Island, state park, explore along coastal villages

    Eat at Moody's Diner in Waldoboro. It has a website. The Walnut Cream Pie is
    not to be missed. If you stay at Camden we always stay at the Cedar Crest, nice pool. There is a very short hike up Mt Battie (it's a big hill) but the view in the very early morning can be quite nice. Nice sporting goods store just south of town.
    Thanks for all the great suggestions.

    We were unable to book in Middlebury, so are staying in Brandon, instead. Seems there is some big student/parent thing going on in Middlebury.
    Almost gone from the 50+ forum. - Email me at dnvrfox@aol.com for another fun new group of 50+ folks

  18. #18
    Senior Member Shemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox
    Thanks for all the great suggestions.

    We were unable to book in Middlebury, so are staying in Brandon, instead. Seems there is some big student/parent thing going on in Middlebury.
    If you still want to stay in Middlebury, call the chamber and ask for the number to Kane's Place. They're a married couple who cycle and enjoy having cyclists. We stayed there July 3rd and they have a beautiful room/studio they rent out above their garage. Everything in it is new and very nice. If they hook you up, you'll have to tell them the young married couple with the cancer survivor referred you!

  19. #19
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shemp
    If you still want to stay in Middlebury, call the chamber and ask for the number to Kane's Place. They're a married couple who cycle and enjoy having cyclists. We stayed there July 3rd and they have a beautiful room/studio they rent out above their garage. Everything in it is new and very nice. If they hook you up, you'll have to tell them the young married couple with the cancer survivor referred you!
    Thanks for the info. I appreciate the referral.
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