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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

Old 08-15-10, 04:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
My preferred route to the North Shore is the Alford St Bridge to Rte 99 up to Lynn Street which passes under Rte 1 to becomes Salem Street, to Cliftondale in Saugus; and I continue on to Lincoln and Boston Streets to Lynn.
I took this route coming back from Beverly a few weeks back, trying to find another way around 107. It seemed to be a much longer route, but I was really exhausted from the heat at the time. There just aren't really good routes through this area. There are some nice rides to be had once you're past the rough bits, though.

I have the opposite problem that you have--most of my rides are north or west. I haven't really looked at routes to the south, as that would mean riding through Boston, and I haven't really looked that hard on how to get across the city.
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Old 08-15-10, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by MacCruiskeen
I took this route coming back from Beverly a few weeks back, trying to find another way around 107. It seemed to be a much longer route, but I was really exhausted from the heat at the time. There just aren't really good routes through this area. There are some nice rides to be had once you're past the rough bits, though.

I have the opposite problem that you have--most of my rides are north or west. I haven't really looked at routes to the south, as that would mean riding through Boston, and I haven't really looked that hard on how to get across the city.
My commute from Kenmore Square southwest to Norwood, whether a basic 14-mile straight shot, or an extended training loop anywhere from 16 to 75 miles, takes me easily through nice parts of the city, though some routes are less so, and are a gateway to some of the nicest cycling areas in the metro area, such as Dover-Sherborn. Do you know Boston?

I describe my four basic 14 mile routes to Norwood as gritty (but safe) urban, pleasant urban, pleasant suburban. and ritzy suburban. In fact I can claim that the first quarter of my route was designed by Frederick Law Ohlmstead (the designer of Boston's Emerald Necklace, NYC's Central Park, Montreal's Mont Royal Park etc.). His office, now a National Historic Site, is on my ritzy suburban route. Send me a PM if you'd like more information. I'm a cartographile by heart.
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Old 08-15-10, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by mastershake16
Hey guys check out my new bike in the Road Cycling forum!
I did check it out. Nice bike! It is, um, a bit different from anything I've ever ridden! For what it's worth, I wouldn't be embarrassed by those toe clips. Plenty of us put down good miles with toe clips. In the old days that's how people won the TDF. Attached is a pic of my speed bike, a '73 Raleigh (with many non-original components).

You got some good advice in that thread. You will get used to the saddle, unless it fits you poorly. Most people feel bruised after their first long ride. It stops being a problem. Shorts may help, may not. (I've never felt the need, but then I don't train for 10,000 miles a year.)

Having jelly legs after 30 miles isn't a surprise either. That's concentrated repetitive exercise for 2 hours, something you probably aren't used to no matter how good a shape you are in. But it may indicate you are pushing too high a gear. Try running a lower gear and spinning faster instead of pumping hard. It works your heart and lungs. It has been said that if your legs hurt, shift down; if your lungs hurt, shift up. You want to find the balance point between saturating your leg muscles with lactic acid and keeping your aerobic capacity at its limit.

Another thing to keep in mind is how far you intend to ride each time you go out. You can afford to push hard if you're only planning to do 10 or 15 miles. If you expect to do 50 miles you need to budget your energy, which generally means going slower or at least ending with a lower average speed. You'll learn how your body works as you ride more.

You asked about shifting in the front. Maybe you've noticed this already, but the front shift is different from the rear in a key way. In the rear the derailleur shifts the portion of the chain that is more or less slack except for the tension of the pulleys to take up the unused links. In the front it shifts the portion of the chain that is under pedaling tension. So it is best to lighten your pedal effort when shifting the front. Also the front shift is usually between gears with a size jump that is much bigger than the jumps in the rear.

So after all that, since this thread is "Good ride today", where'd you go? What kind of roads? How was it? See anything special?
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Old 08-15-10, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
I'll start. It was a beautiful Saturday and I did an approximately 75 mile loop from Kenmore Square to Lexington via Waltham, and then out Rte 225 through the pretty Forge Village to Harvard and back Rte 111 to Rte 27 to Rte 117 through to Waltham and on to Kenmore Square.
Okay, I'll ask. How'd you get from Forge Village to Harvard? More importantly, how'd you get to Harvard at all? You climb 110 from the rt2 bridge? If so, you are the man! That's some hill even for a car.

As for getting back east, my maps (DeLorme Street Atlas) show a lot of road options which avoid the numbered routes. Never biked them yet. Too bad about 117, it looks like such a nice road from a car, though it does carry a lot of traffic.
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Old 08-16-10, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
I did check it out. Nice bike! It is, um, a bit different from anything I've ever ridden! For what it's worth, I wouldn't be embarrassed by those toe clips. Plenty of us put down good miles with toe clips. In the old days that's how people won the TDF. Attached is a pic of my speed bike, a '73 Raleigh (with many non-original components).

You got some good advice in that thread. You'll learn how your body works as you ride more.

You asked about shifting in the front.
So after all that, since this thread is "Good ride today", where'd you go? What kind of roads? How was it? See anything special?


Jim,
Your response and guidance is excellent! Spot on technically and very well written. I also like your closing asking about the ride! I know you wrote it for Mastershake but good for us all. BTW, sweet Raleigh!
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Old 08-16-10, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
Okay, I'll ask. How'd you get from Forge Village to Harvard? More importantly, how'd you get to Harvard at all? You climb 110 from the rt2 bridge? If so, you are the man! That's some hill even for a car.

As for getting back east, my maps (DeLorme Street Atlas) show a lot of road options which avoid the numbered routes. Never biked them yet. Too bad about 117, it looks like such a nice road from a car, though it does carry a lot of traffic.
Hi JM,

Thanks for your nice comment. I do recall riding Rte 110 over Rte 2 as a hill, but not a memorably hard one. An impressive hill though was a downhill run on Rte 111 from Harvard to I-495, and then up a seemingly lesser uphill into Boxborough. The route I was trying to retrace from last year actually would have been through Harvard onto Bolton / Harvard Rd down to Rte 117; I recall that road as very nice.

I donít get out to and beyond I-495 much, but the toughest hills I have encountered out there are on Rte 85 from Hudson into Marlborough, Rte 85 from Rte 30 into Hopkinton, and High Street out of West Upton -> Main St in Hopkinton.

My route from Forge Village was Rte 225 into Grafton to the intersection of 119. That was where I met the Father-Daughter pair who let me use their map. Directly across Rte 119 is Westford Road where I saw all the Mass Bikers heading in the opposite direction. Westford Road comes to a T- intersection and I should have turned right down a residential street that comes to a rotary joining 2A-110 to 110-111 south to Harvard. I took the left though, from whence the riders were coming, and I then had to ride 2A-110 for about 2 miles to that rotary, a less pleasant road. All in all it is one of my favorite rides, especially 4-225.
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Old 08-16-10, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler
Your response and guidance is excellent! Spot on technically and very well written... BTW, sweet Raleigh!
Thank you, sbp. And my bike thanks you too.

That's the bike for which I wanted to build a new rear wheel. Still haven't done it, haven't had time. Truth be told, I don't have a 126mm rear hub either! The bike is slightly different now from that pic. Since early in the summer the crank has been a Sugino RT instead of that Maxy. And it now sports a new frame pump. My old Zephal HP still pumps great but the mounting hardware had broken enough that it was bouncing off the frame on the faster hills.
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Old 08-16-10, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
I did check it out. Nice bike! It is, um, a bit different from anything I've ever ridden! For what it's worth, I wouldn't be embarrassed by those toe clips. Plenty of us put down good miles with toe clips. In the old days that's how people won the TDF. Attached is a pic of my speed bike, a '73 Raleigh (with many non-original components).

You got some good advice in that thread. You will get used to the saddle, unless it fits you poorly. Most people feel bruised after their first long ride. It stops being a problem. Shorts may help, may not. (I've never felt the need, but then I don't train for 10,000 miles a year.)

Having jelly legs after 30 miles isn't a surprise either. That's concentrated repetitive exercise for 2 hours, something you probably aren't used to no matter how good a shape you are in. But it may indicate you are pushing too high a gear. Try running a lower gear and spinning faster instead of pumping hard. It works your heart and lungs. It has been said that if your legs hurt, shift down; if your lungs hurt, shift up. You want to find the balance point between saturating your leg muscles with lactic acid and keeping your aerobic capacity at its limit.

Another thing to keep in mind is how far you intend to ride each time you go out. You can afford to push hard if you're only planning to do 10 or 15 miles. If you expect to do 50 miles you need to budget your energy, which generally means going slower or at least ending with a lower average speed. You'll learn how your body works as you ride more.

You asked about shifting in the front. Maybe you've noticed this already, but the front shift is different from the rear in a key way. In the rear the derailleur shifts the portion of the chain that is more or less slack except for the tension of the pulleys to take up the unused links. In the front it shifts the portion of the chain that is under pedaling tension. So it is best to lighten your pedal effort when shifting the front. Also the front shift is usually between gears with a size jump that is much bigger than the jumps in the rear.

So after all that, since this thread is "Good ride today", where'd you go? What kind of roads? How was it? See anything special?
Beautiful bike!

For my ride. I literally cannot stop riding. I am not kidding. I told myself after the 30 miles ride, I'd take the next day off. Got up, so sore I couldn't even sit on the bike. My friend wanted me to meet him at his house so I did. Soreness kinda went away, then he wanted to go for a ride on his longboard. So I joined, then suddenly I realized we had gone pretty far and I had been going up and down all kinds of streets trying to delay myself for him. Rode 15 miles I'd say. So Sunday HAS to be a rest day. Well, last night we all went out on our bikes to a local country store. Rode about another 15. (I love riding at night) THEN today I went out and bought shorts ( I think they make a difference but I'm still really sore so ill be able to tell once I rest up), and I eventually did 25 miles with my buddies. They were all on mopeds as I was trying to draft off of them etc etc. Was fun but I had my first fall today. Legs a little bruised but w/e. Scraped derailleur and tore a little bar tape. Almost got hit by a car, but it stopped in time while I was on the ground.

PLENTY of hills of course

30 mile ride was amazing. I just kept going. honestly, I was pedaling in the gear that I could spin fastest while it still had an effect. Maybe I need to go up a gear, and just make myself turn it faster. I did it in a little over 2 hours. Tons of hills that really hurt but it was so worth it. What sucked was that I rode by at least 10 houses that had parties and BBQ grills going. It was tantalizing. I also got extremely hungry when I was around my 25th mile. I got home and literally ate a whole pizza, and some yogurt. I felt awesome and exhausted at the same time. Endorphins or w/e.

Tried a GU tonight, was great. Probably will buy more when I get money...

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Water bottle cage
Gu Gels
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Old 08-16-10, 10:11 PM
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Originally Posted by mastershake16
30 mile ride was amazing. I just kept going. honestly, I was pedaling in the gear that I could spin fastest while it still had an effect. Maybe I need to go up a gear, and just make myself turn it faster. I did it in a little over 2 hours. ... What sucked was that I rode by at least 10 houses that had parties and BBQ grills going. It was tantalizing. I also got extremely hungry when I was around my 25th mile.
Well done! 30 miles is a good ride, enough to feel like you've done something, not too hard but non-trivial. And 2 hrs is a very good time for it. The way to make good time, as you have discovered, is just to keep going. And the 25 mile point is a likely distance to start getting hungry! I like to eat a banana or some other fruit, or one of those all-natural-ingredients power bars. Not apples though.

As you have also discovered, the joy of biking includes the sights and smells of the things you encounter along the way. Even if you can't stop and eat some of it!

Originally Posted by mastershake16
I felt awesome and exhausted at the same time.
Welcome to biking. Ain't it grand?
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Old 08-17-10, 08:00 AM
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Been seeing a lot of hawks on my rides lately. Cycling past the back side of Old North Bridge in Concord, I watched a red tailed hawk swoop in low and slow, like an owl, in a failed attempt to snag a bird in the bush (bracing myself for puns now). Next day, while in quiet neighborhood in Weston, cycled within 4 feet of a more successful red-tail enjoying his breakfast on the side of the road.

J.M. you need to give us your (music) schedule. I'm thinking a cycling road trip with some nice music at the end might be in store!
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Old 08-17-10, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by bikinggrrrl
Cycling past the back side of Old North Bridge in Concord, I watched a red tailed hawk swoop in low and slow, like an owl, in a failed attempt to snag a bird in the bush (bracing myself for puns now).

J.M. you need to give us your (music) schedule. I'm thinking a cycling road trip with some nice music at the end might be in store!
I see you have the hawk situation well in hand.

It is kind of you to ask about the music schedule. In fact, a few of the shows coming up would be great bike destinations. Our website and complete schedule can be found here's:
https://www.SouthernRail.com
https://www.SouthernRail.com/sr_sched.html
Maybe we'll see you at one!
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Old 08-17-10, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
I see you have the hawk situation well in hand.

It is kind of you to ask about the music schedule. In fact, a few of the shows coming up would be great bike destinations. Our website and complete schedule can be found here's:
https://www.SouthernRail.com
https://www.SouthernRail.com/sr_sched.html
Maybe we'll see you at one!
I love your beard. Much respect!
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Old 08-17-10, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by mastershake16
Hey guys check out my new bike in the Road Cycling forum!
sweet bike! Glad you are enjoying your new ride. And I am totally enjoying your positive energy and enthusiasm.
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Old 08-19-10, 04:09 PM
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Slow, hard ride up from Carlisle, through Concord, Stow, up that dang HoneyPot Hill, back home via Acton and Pope Road. I miss the longer rides we used to do but with a not-so-little guy in tow, riding is just so much harder and lengthy rides are just out of the question. Nice day out but after yesterday's hammerfest on the shorter route, my legs just didn't have much play left in them.
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Old 08-19-10, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by bikinggrrrl
Slow, hard ride up from Carlisle, through Concord, Stow, up that dang HoneyPot Hill, back home via Acton and Pope Road. I miss the longer rides we used to do but with a not-so-little guy in tow, riding is just so much harder and lengthy rides are just out of the question. Nice day out but after yesterday's hammerfest on the shorter route, my legs just didn't have much play left in them.
"That dang HoneyPot Hill", would that be the road north of the farm or the road west? I've biked over the hill to the west. The one to the north is worthy of being called "dang". Nice to hear you went out not-so-young'un and all.

I'll probably have to bail out riding this weekend. The knee is much better but my better half, a.k.a. my sweetie, wants to climb Monadnock on Saturday and go blueberry picking on Sunday, plus take the canoe out, terrorize farm stands, walk along the Charles River, and play in the garden. T'aint enough hours in the day, nor days in the weekend, if you ask me. Jus' can't do it all. So I'll be biking on foot this weekend.
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Old 08-20-10, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by bikinggrrrl
Slow, hard ride up from Carlisle, through Concord, Stow, up that dang HoneyPot Hill, back home via Acton and Pope Road. I miss the longer rides we used to do but with a not-so-little guy in tow, riding is just so much harder and lengthy rides are just out of the question. Nice day out but after yesterday's hammerfest on the shorter route, my legs just didn't have much play left in them.
When the tow is getting not-so-little, all seems right with the way of things. From tow to kid seat then tandem third wheel then .... ah well. My first graduate from that progression biked across country last year. All I did was blink. The second just rode the Prouty in NH with me. The third is taking drivers education and not much interested in bikes right now.
Say, BG could you describe the fabled Honey Pot Hill route a bit more? I'm a way too devout looper of Monument and Concord/Lowell roads. There are advantages to being able to cruise (with eyes closed) through Concord Center, stop at Ferns to free up another package of Fig Newtons and reach the Concord water fountain just at the end of the second bottle. Me being a southern Metro West-er, this is the northern end of a long loop. A western swing through Acton sounds nice.
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Old 08-20-10, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler
When the tow is getting not-so-little, all seems right with the way of things. From tow to kid seat then tandem third wheel then .... ah well. My first graduate from that progression biked across country last year. All I did was blink. The second just rode the Prouty in NH with me. The third is taking drivers education and not much interested in bikes right now.
Say, BG could you describe the fabled Honey Pot Hill route a bit more? I'm a way too devout looper of Monument and Concord/Lowell roads. There are advantages to being able to cruise (with eyes closed) through Concord Center, stop at Ferns to free up another package of Fig Newtons and reach the Concord water fountain just at the end of the second bottle. Me being a southern Metro West-er, this is the northern end of a long loop. A western swing through Acton sounds nice.
I'm going to third more info on this honey-pot hill route...

I've just discovered riding in the Concord area with the quad cycles folks and I'm slowly expanding my knowledge.
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Old 08-20-10, 08:20 AM
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ugh. I don't know whats going on!

I was going to go for a ride yesterday, but on my way to my friends house I just tightened up and my knees feel like crap. On my way home this morning the same thing happened. It's only 3 miles to his house. At the 2 mile mark my quads were very tight and my knees never got "loose", they just feel stiff.

Do I need to ride more to loosen up? Or rest more?
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Old 08-20-10, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by mastershake16
ugh. I don't know whats going on!

I was going to go for a ride yesterday, but on my way to my friends house I just tightened up and my knees feel like crap. On my way home this morning the same thing happened. It's only 3 miles to his house. At the 2 mile mark my quads were very tight and my knees never got "loose", they just feel stiff.

Do I need to ride more to loosen up? Or rest more?
Did your knee just tighten up? Or was it more knee pain?

From your posts it seems like you've been riding a ton, so there's a good chance you're tired. Also, it's not a bad idea to get a bit of a warm up in before a hard effort. I notice a big difference in how I ride when I start a longer ride with 20 minutes of easyish spinning, versus my shorter rides where I'm usually riding pretty hard after a 5 minute warm up.
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Old 08-20-10, 10:39 AM
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You guys forced me to learn something new today. I never tried map-my-ride before but here is the HoneyPot Hill route... Pick and choose what works for you.
https://www.mapmyride.com/route/us/ma...28232197814353

I don't know if that gives you enough information or not. I have all the 'left on to X', 'right on Y' directions if you want 'em.
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Old 08-20-10, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by godshammgod
Did your knee just tighten up? Or was it more knee pain?

From your posts it seems like you've been riding a ton, so there's a good chance you're tired. Also, it's not a bad idea to get a bit of a warm up in before a hard effort. I notice a big difference in how I ride when I start a longer ride with 20 minutes of easyish spinning, versus my shorter rides where I'm usually riding pretty hard after a 5 minute warm up.
Ill try easy spinning. Come to think of it, I don't really give myself much time for a warmup. Literally 200 yds out of my driveway is a 12% climb. The knee was more discomfort. I wasn't wincing in pain but I feel like they are rusty joints that need WD-40 or something
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Old 08-20-10, 02:17 PM
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So I just went for a ride. I bought some Gu earlier today, but wasn't planning on using them today. I took the good advice to warm up a little more. Before I ate a roast beef sandwich, waited an hour, then I started doing some stretches. Just a few but they loosened me up a little bit. Then instead of the climb right at the start, I went on a 4 mile MUP and cruised. This got me warmed up and I think it worked. Climbs came and I just did them with ease. Felt good so I said "Lets do it again". Did the same loop. Now I'm at the 20 mile mark and feeling GREAT! (It felt like I was just getting warmed up.) So I went and did my usual killer hill route. After the first hill I ate my Gu and it gave me the little boost I needed for the super tough climb. (I ate BEFORE I grew desperate with hunger and had no energy left. Lesson learned the hard way.)

Then all of the sudden I just kept going into every road I saw. My arms and legs forced me to, while I cursed to myself. I don't know what it is, but I just have a drive to do more and more and more. Next thing you know I'm home feeling good and did 30 miles. Much different than my other 30 mile trip with A) No food B) No water bottle holder.

So knees weren't as bad. Legs felt good. I think the warmup worked. Also did it in a much quicker time.

I would have went farther but I have work in 20 minutes
(Need to work to get money for clipless )

Thank You!


Track:https://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=3...,79.013672&z=4

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Old 08-20-10, 05:45 PM
  #473  
What??? Only 2 wheels?
 
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Originally Posted by bikinggrrrl
You guys forced me to learn something new today. I never tried map-my-ride before but here is the HoneyPot Hill route... Pick and choose what works for you.
https://www.mapmyride.com/route/us/ma...28232197814353

I don't know if that gives you enough information or not. I have all the 'left on to X', 'right on Y' directions if you want 'em.
It came up okay on my computer. Nice route. That goes over the hill to the west of the orchard's store, petting zoo, and offices. I went over that one westward earlier in the summer. (The farm is at the crossroads formed by Sudbury Rd, Boon Rd, and Whitman St. Sudbury Rd actually turns there and forms two adjacent legs, south and east, of the crossroads instead of opposite legs.)

There is big hill on Whitman St too. I've never been over it by bike but I saw some guy going over a few weeks ago. It looked like a serious push, probably harder than the Boon Rd hill. The view from the top is lovely. I think you can see six states, Boston Harbor, and the Atlantic Ocean.
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Old 08-21-10, 06:07 AM
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What??? Only 2 wheels?
 
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Originally Posted by mastershake16
...I took the good advice to warm up a little more... (I ate BEFORE I grew desperate with hunger and had no energy left. Lesson learned the hard way.)
... I'm home feeling good and did 30 miles. Much different than my other 30 mile trip with A) No food B) No water bottle holder.

I would have went farther but I have work in 20 minutes

Track:https://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=3...,79.013672&z=4
Warming up and eating before you get hungry - all good things to have learned. Great job. As for having to go to work, ah, your useful life is now over.

I checked your map but all I got was the entire US. That's some trip!
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Old 08-21-10, 09:07 AM
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Fixed link: https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UT...4442aa4f4&z=13

Dark blue is where I overlapped ( I did a loop)
Little over 2,000ft of climbing
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