This turned out to be an easier week than I had planned. Besides my back that had been bothering me, we has also had Margot, Brendan and Moose visiting over the weekend.
Monday had taken a rest day. John and I rode together after work on Tuesday. We did a 23 mile loop along Nash hill towards Williamsburg. On Nash hill we ran into Jason and Isaac. After chatting a little, Jason and Isaac decided to join us for a bit.
And once we were close to Williamsburg we each went our own way. Isaac went straight and Jason turned left. John and I turned right on O'Neil rd. Via Ashfield rd, Guinnea rd and Main Poland we rode back to Conway. We cut it shorter as my back had started to complain and with the socializing we were later anyway.
Wednesday Mike came over to ride for two days in Western Mass. We started with a mountain bike ride in the Conway hills. Mike took his mountain bike and I rode with my Fat bike. First we went up Old Cricket Hill road. This is a long climb on asphalt with some parallel trails we took. The last half mile is a steep rocky jeep track, where you have to pick your line between the washed out sections.
We then descend on a sweeping single track which I had done multiple times in the snow. Where before I had fixed up my squeeling brakes, this trail used to be torture on the ears. Now the brakes where nice and quiet.
Just after I successfully fjorded a little stream, there was a confused looking medium sized snapping turtle blocking the trail. Off course I had to stop to take a picture of the turtle in its prehistoric looking glory.
We then got on another jeep track. And just as we went up a steep rocky section a pickup truck come down the trail. Fortunately it stopped to let us pass. It looked pretty uncomfortable driving down it. After descending a little we found our way to the pond where the Roaring brook springs.
We then did two loops from the pond. First a shorter loop I knew from the Snow riding. Out on a jeep track, back on flowy single track.
We then went out further on the jeep track and Mike saw on the trailforks app how it looped back and reconnected with the flowy section we had already done. I now remember this trail as well from the Fatbiking in the snow.
It was now almost time to get back. We connected the pond via a jeep track back to the head of the first flowy trail. There we went the opposite direction to the trail that would bring us all the way back to the transfer station at Old Cricket road. Since I only had ridden it in the snow, had to guess which way to go at certain intersections. But I guess I guessed right as we made it back in the way I had intended. A good solid 10 miles trail ride that lasted about 2 hours.
The next day Mike and I did a 40 mile ride with a remote start in Charlemont. We had a late start as I had an appointment for Neuro Muscular massage for my hip and back. That did wonders, this was my first session and my back felt so much better. By the time we arrived in Charlemont it was lunch time. We decided to have lunch at Wells provisions in Charlemont. First time I was there, it looked very cozy and they had a good selection of food and drinks. I ordered a cappucinno and a BLT sandwich. The sandwich was big and came with home-fried chips. First I was going to save half of it but then thought I would probably needs these calories later anyway and ate it all.
The ride featured 3 major climbs. Right out of the gate we started with Legate Hill rd, a 2.4 mile climb, first paved then gravel. According to Strave I rode this once before in 2018, but have not recollection. I do remember descending down Legate as it was featured on last year's D2R2 mystery ride.
We then worked our way via Rowe and Pelham to the 2nd featured climb Kingsley hill rd. But before we made it to the start of the climb in Munroe, we had to descend Munroe Hill rd. A super steep road, which brings you to the entrance of the now defunct Yankee nuclear plant. At the foot of Kingsley we took a quick photo and up it went. The first half mile has an average grade of 20% and the first mile has an average grade of 14%. For a total of 1.26 miles with an average grade of 12.6%. With my 32x32 gearing it meant I had to zig zag to turn the pedals around. My average cadence for the whole climb was 57 rpm. A real stairmaster workout as John would comment later. Mike seemed to "spin" up with his more favorable gearing.
After catching our breath at the top of the climb we descended into Vermont and from there rode Tunnel road to our last climb of the day Witcomb Hill rd. Just before the start of the climb we stopped at the Hoosac train tunnel. A 4 mile stretch 1000 feet under route 2 that connects the Pioneer valley with North Adams. Whitcomb felt much easier than Kingsley but with the now tired legs and it being a longer climb was still a hard effort.
We were now done with climbing, and descended the last 10 miles along route 2 back towards Charlemont. Just before crossing the Deerfield river we took Tower rd parallel to Route 2. This gave us a beautiful view of Berkshire East and brought us right back to our cars.
After loading up the bikes we drove further down rt 2 towards Hager's farm marklet for a well deserved Maple creamee. When we devoured our creamee we went our separate ways. Mike back to Lexington. And me back to Conway via Home depot for some errands.
My back held itself surprisingly well.
This week on Veloviewer.