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  1. #1
    One less car Jay H's Avatar
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    Touring options from Salisbury, CT to Great Barrington, MA

    A friend and I want to bike from NJ to Great Barrington, staying in New Paltz for a night at a friend's place. We'll be following my own route from here to New Paltz and then take the Adv. Cycling route from New Paltz to Salisbury or Canaan, CT and then head north to Great Barrington, MA. Is there anybody here that knows the roads between the two cities? Obviously bike friendly would be a requirement. My atlas which is not detailed shows two possibilities, from Salisbury, CT we could take County 41 north to County 23 east but there is also a possible route to take County 22 (in NY state) from around Millerton to Rt 23 and towards G.B.

    If anybody is familiar with that area has any suggestions, I'm all ears!

    We'll be loaded touring, staying in tents and stuff...

    Jay

  2. #2
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    Jay,

    I have ridden Rt 41 from about the CT-MA line north to Rt 23 then into GB. A nice ride. 41 is narrow, but no problem riding. Rolls a little but you're going to get that in this area. Going across Rt 23 be sure to stop and read the monument to "Newspaper carriers".

    Don't know what the ADV CYCLING route is from New Paltz to Salisbury, but be sure to check out the "Harlem Valley Rail Trail" that starts in Amenia and heads north to Millerton. This section is about 8 miles or so, all paved. Nice and not much traffic. If you decide to do the rail-trail, take notice of the old Sharon Crossing railroad station. Has been converted to a house, really neat.

    I would recommend a telephone call to Bashbish Bicycle in Copake Falls, just north of Millerton. I think the owner is named Grant. 518-329-4962. Open Wed to Mon 9 to 5, closed Tues. He suggested some beautiful routes to ride in that area.

    http://www.bashbishbicycle.com

    Check with him about Rt 22 north To Rt 23 over to GB. I think you will have to cross the mountain this way, not sure, but check with him.

    Enjoy the trip.

    johnnyk

  3. #3
    One less car Jay H's Avatar
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    Hey, thanks for your reply! I have USGS quadrants for all of the NE (and NY State) from Maptech's Terrain Navigator. I checked the topos between Millerton and Great Barrington and it does appear that going east to Salisbury,CT then on Rt 41 as you say is the less hilly route. If I go Rt 22 north to Rt 23, I go by the Catamount Ski Resort and my topo shows that there is a huge hill right east of the ski resort that is long but not terribly steep except for some 7% grades towards the top.

    The Adv Cycling route from new Paltz basically uses the bridge over the hudson at Poughkeepsie then heads north on Rt 9. I don't have the route maps with me so I don't remember the rest but it basically meanders NE til it gets to Millerton and Salisbury, but then since it is going to Maine and not the Berkshires, it continues east past Canaan and onward.

    Thanks for the rail trail suggestion, we'll be pressed for time on the way to but perhaps we can hit it on the way back... I'll talk to those guys at bashbikes...

    [edit ] Wow, I just checked out HVRT.ORG from bash bikes and it looks like I could take this RT rather than Rt 22 since it appears to parallel the route.. I just emailed the folks at Bash Bikes so I'm waiting for a reply but that rail trail looks like a great idea. I could take Rt 44 to Salisbury and then Rt 41 to Rt 23 to get to great Barrington to avoid the hill east of Catamount and on the way home, can take Rt 23 west all the way to hillsdale and then pick up the HVRT south to Millerton... I think that would be killer!

    Jay
    Last edited by Jay H; 09-10-03 at 06:10 AM.

  4. #4
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    Jay,

    On your return trip-

    1. The HVRT is paved from Copake Falls south for about four miles, then you have to travel by road to Millerton where you can pick-up the trail again. Paved to Amenia, about eight miles.

    Going to GB.

    2. You are better off catching the trail on your way to GB (north bound) It's not out of the way.

    When are you doing this ride? I'll look up the route numbers (directions) tonite when I get home. Or, when you talk to Bash Bish Bicycle, ask him?

    This sounds like a nice trip.

    johnnyk

  5. #5
    One less car Jay H's Avatar
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    1. The HVRT is paved from Copake Falls south for about four miles, then you have to travel by road to Millerton where you can pick-up the trail again. Paved to Amenia, about eight miles.
    On further review, I have noticed that the website says that the section 6 to Hillsdale isn't done (not starting construction til 2005!) so I guess there goes that plan. I believe the section you mention is section 5 which is completed and I can take that somehow off Rt 22 for a short bit and then get back onto Rt 22 to reach Millerton (to go around section 4)

    But yeah, once we get to Millerton we can take the trail from Millerton to Amenia if we can route find from there to New Paltz. I'll have to get out the maps again.

    The reason I was thinking of hitting the HVRT on the way back is that if we were to go north on the RT and take Rt 23 East, we'd have to go up the hill east of Catamount Ski Area. I'm not averse to a few big climbs but it would slow us down alot and I'm not sure how good my friend will be who is a good 20 years older than me (in body but not in mind). I know he should be OK but he would be alot slower.

    If we go Rt 41 we'll avoid the big hill because Rt 41 meets Rt 23 in South Egremont which is already east of Catamount and "the Hill"...

    As for the dates, I'm headed up there Oct 3rd, with one night in New Paltz, NY. I gather it should be about a total of 170 or so miles from where I live.

    Jay

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