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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

Old 05-08-19, 06:40 PM
  #8101  
NomarsGirl
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Probably stretching the limits of "metro Boston" here, but has anyone ridden in Acadia National Park? Thinking of taking a trip up there in June. Would my road bike be suitable on the carriage roads or would I be restricted to town and the Loop Road?

Ruby has 28 mm tires, but can take wider ones, though I can't find the specs to see what the limit is. Maybe if I put on 32 or 35 mm with some tread on them? The stock tires are pretty smooth. I should learn to change the tires anyway.
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Old 05-08-19, 06:57 PM
  #8102  
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Originally Posted by NomarsGirl View Post
Probably stretching the limits of "metro Boston" here, but has anyone ridden in Acadia National Park? Thinking of taking a trip up there in June. Would my road bike be suitable on the carriage roads or would I be restricted to town and the Loop Road?

Ruby has 28 mm tires, but can take wider ones, though I can't find the specs to see what the limit is. Maybe if I put on 32 or 35 mm with some tread on them? The stock tires are pretty smooth. I should learn to change the tires anyway.
A few years ago I posted on this thread:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
This may be one of the northernmost ride descriptions on the Metro Boston thread. For the past two days the family and I have been visiting Toronto, and I’ve rented a bike-share bike, similar to our Hubways.

I think if you were to distill the best features of New York and Boston, you would produce Toronto, at least for cycling…
Many years ago I cycled around Arcadia National Park on a road bike, maybe even with sew-up tires,but not wider than 25C and enjoyed the riding, including to the top of Mount Cadillac.

I’m sure @jimmuller will reply soon, because he seems to do go there frequently.
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Old 05-08-19, 11:28 PM
  #8103  
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Originally Posted by NomarsGirl View Post
Probably stretching the limits of "metro Boston" here, but has anyone ridden in Acadia National Park? Thinking of taking a trip up there in June. Would my road bike be suitable on the carriage roads or would I be restricted to town and the Loop Road?

Ruby has 28 mm tires, but can take wider ones, though I can't find the specs to see what the limit is. Maybe if I put on 32 or 35 mm with some tread on them? The stock tires are pretty smooth. I should learn to change the tires anyway.
Jim Muller has a number of posts earlier on this thread reporting on his adventures in that neck of the woods on road bikes. Worth doing a little thread archaeology to read 'em.

rod
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Old 05-08-19, 11:33 PM
  #8104  
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Another fine Spring day, and I brought another bike up from the basement and took it for a spin. This time, it was the Surly Trucker DeLuxe, a 26" touring bike with S and S couplers that Surly made for a few years. I put 55 mm Compass Rat Trap Pass Extralight tires on it, when those became available, and dubbed it "Monster Trucker". It's definitely its own kind of fun. Didn't have time to take it off the pavement today, but it made me smile anyway.


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Old 05-09-19, 05:21 AM
  #8105  
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Originally Posted by NomarsGirl View Post
Probably stretching the limits of "metro Boston" here, but has anyone ridden in Acadia National Park? Thinking of taking a trip up there in June. Would my road bike be suitable on the carriage roads or would I be restricted to town and the Loop Road?

Ruby has 28 mm tires, but can take wider ones, though I can't find the specs to see what the limit is. Maybe if I put on 32 or 35 mm with some tread on them? The stock tires are pretty smooth. I should learn to change the tires anyway.
Metro-Boston/Downeast Division. Ridden there many times. We've ridden the tandem around the Park Loop Road, on some of the gravel carriage roads, and on some of the local town roads. I've also ridden the PLR and up Cadillac on nine different solo bikes (many with 23mm tires). The biking is great in spots and no so great in others.

The PLR surface is glass-smooth. No trucks, no winter plowing. Be aware it has some steep hills, and some longish hills, so low gears are your friend unless you are a TdF competitor. We're talking hills that hit 15% grade. About 3/4 of it is one-way. The two-way section can seem scary when cars go by and you are fatigued from grinding uphill with no pavement shoulder to speak of. But not so frightening as to make you not ride. The eastern side of the PLR is all one way and has one downhill that must hit 20%. You need brakes or you'll go around a 25mph turn at 35 and maybe pick up a speeding ticket.

Cadillac is a 3-mile grind uphill, also with minimal shoulder. Lots of traffic but it's still worth the effort, very rewarding when you reach the Blue Hill Overlook sign near the top. The ride down is awesome. You can ride both Cadillac and the PLR on any tires you wish.

Many of the carriage roads are designated biking roads with packed tiny-gravel surface. Lots of folks seemingly unused to bikes ride them on rental mtb's. You could ride them on 28's if youa re careful but 32's might be better. We have 32's on the tandem. IIRC I did some on 23's once. I confess I keep the tandem speeds down for fear of skidding out. The Eagle Lake and Witch Hole Pond loops are especially nice.

We tried riding rt 102 around the "quiet side" once. Went as far south as Southwest Harbor, turned around. The road at that time was in bad shape and it has lots of traffic. It's been repaved since then but we probably won't bother again. Other town roads are nice, mostly, probably easier on solo bikes than on a tandem. The sandy soil and heavy use make the shoulders break up easily on the really busy roads. The biggest problem with biking anywhere on MDI is that other than the PLR (which is only 19 miles IIRC) there are no satisfyingly long rides without having to deal with steep hill sections or busy traffic. Still, if you want to bike, by all means, do so. We are going up there again in a week or so and I will be taking a solo bike for another PLR/Cadillac ride. Probably take the '83 PFN-10. Or something else.
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Old 05-09-19, 06:13 AM
  #8106  
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Thanks for the detailed report! I had done some research but it sounded like everyone rents hybrids and I just sold my old hybrid. We won't be climbing Cadillac mountain-- at least not on the bikes.

I have climbing gears but it looks like they'll be put to the test. I'm sure I'll be glad for my disk brakes. I think I will get some tires. 32 seems to be the limit for my bike. Hubby has a hybrid with disk brakes and 35s so he doesn't have to change anything. Maybe he'll be able to keep up with me for once.

I admire you for riding a tandem. Whenever we see couples out on tandems we joke that they must really like each other. We would kill each other. Totally different riding styles. He likes to use the biggest gear he can handle and mash it. I use my gears and spin at a steady cadence. Guess who has more stamina?
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Old 05-09-19, 07:56 AM
  #8107  
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Hmmmmmm. Looks like I was planning the trip about a week too soon. The shuttle buses don't start until 23 June. That was my backup plan in case we aren't up to the task. I think we can, but would like the option of putting the bikes on the bus if necessary.

Maybe we'll do the island line rail trail in Vermont instead and hit Acadia later in the summer. I checked and the ferry starts running Memorial day weekend. We wanted to do both trips this year anyway. And the Vermont one looks easier.
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Old 05-09-19, 08:40 AM
  #8108  
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Originally Posted by NomarsGirl View Post
Acadia National Park?
dunno but maybe some stuff in here would be helpful?

https://www.bikeforums.net/northeast...questions.html
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Old 05-09-19, 02:04 PM
  #8109  
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Warm weather is bringing out all sorts of poor decision making on the trail. Yesterday's return commute on the Minuteman was a nervous affair
1. Very crowded with seemingly unpredictable individuals, one lady just turned her bike onto the path in front of an oncoming cyclist
2. A teenager slamming on his brakes and locking up his rear wheel right in front of me as I was making a turn onto the path after crossing Rt. 60. It's a miracle that I didn't eat pavement, and I was clipped in too! The icing on the cake was the "what did I do wrong" look on his face.
3. A van slowly running through a crosswalk while a lady on a staircycle was crossing, also somewhat slowly. She was on a collision path with the van, but then just turned left, made a large-radius U-turn and went back on the bike path heading back where she came from, without any sort of acknowledgement of the situation.

Days like this make me strongly consider getting a 'bar-cam'.

On a more positive note, my daughter is getting close to growing out of her bike seat - and also uncomfortably unwieldy, so I scoured the local markets and stumbled upon a fantastic deal on this Burley trailer on FB marketplace:



It's in a very good condition though the rear hub and freewheel sound a little rough, so may need some grease. Yet another rack in my quiver, but this one is nice and beefy and it will let me carry my Ortliebs while transporting the kid, which is something I really missed with the CoPilot seat (no front rack yet). Can't wait to take it out!
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Old 05-09-19, 02:50 PM
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Took the LHT for a spin up to Lexington Center and back, turning around somewhat sooner than I might have on the advice of my goose pimples, having misjudged the weather when dressing for the ride. Returning to the Minuteman after an absence of several months, all sorts of things are suddenly salient, for example:


rod
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Old 05-09-19, 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by autonomy View Post
On a more positive note, my daughter is getting close to growing out of her bike seat - and also uncomfortably unwieldy, so I scoured the local markets and stumbled upon a fantastic deal on this Burley trailer on FB marketplace:



It's in a very good condition though the rear hub and freewheel sound a little rough, so may need some grease. Yet another rack in my quiver, but this one is nice and beefy and it will let me carry my Ortliebs while transporting the kid, which is something I really missed with the CoPilot seat (no front rack yet). Can't wait to take it out!
The day (not too many days away) she pushes her own weight will be totally memorable.

Congrats.

-mr. bill
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Old 05-11-19, 05:51 AM
  #8112  
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Originally Posted by NomarsGirl View Post
Hmmmmmm. Looks like I was planning the trip about a week too soon. The shuttle buses don't start until 23 June. That was my backup plan in case we aren't up to the task. I think we can, but would like the option of putting the bikes on the bus if necessary.

Maybe we'll do the island line rail trail in Vermont instead and hit Acadia later in the summer. I checked and the ferry starts running Memorial day weekend. We wanted to do both trips this year anyway. And the Vermont one looks easier.
I've cycled at Acadia a few times in the past three years. Love it! IMO, best mile-for-mile cycling in the Northeast! If you ride the Park Look Road, or Cadillac Mountain, I really recommend getting out early. I'm an early riser and I'd ride from our b&b in Bar Harbor and out onto the PLR often by 6:00 AM, sometimes even earlier if the sun was up. There are almost no cars in the park at that time as the Cadillac Mountain sunrise crowd is mostly gone and the day crowd hasn't come in yet. So ... you have the park almost to yourself - just glorious! Especially if you decided to try Cadillac Mountain - as someone noted, there aren't shoulders and the road is one lane in each direction and very curvy so getting out early makes it a lot less stressful.

I've ridden on a few of the Carriage Roads. Generally, around Eagle Lake and down around Jordan Pond ... they're really great with no car traffic. Being out early, even very little bike or hiker traffic. On the carriage roads I've been on, I think you'd be fine with 28's - definitely with 32s from the roads I saw. I actually road on my 25s and it was ok even with that.
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Old 05-11-19, 03:12 PM
  #8113  
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My wife and I took a short ride on the Minuteman today out to Lexington - her first ride of the season. Had not been that way in a few weeks, and I was surprised to see that the Lexington visitor's center on the path is closed for the coming year. Plan your restroom breaks accordingly.




There's not much info about the remodel on the town website: https://www.lexingtonma.gov/visitors-center

It would be nice if the new visitor's center had externally accessible restrooms like the ones at the Bedford Depot, big enough to bring your bike in with you. That's very handy when riding solo without a lock.
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Old 05-11-19, 05:00 PM
  #8114  
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This morning I got out at 0530 on my Seven for 53 miles. Evidently a few hundred other cyclists did too. By far I crossed paths with more riders than I think I ever have. Later on I took GHAZMH junior to the Bruce Fremon trail for another 15 miles. I rode my Soma Smoothie and well, it was miserable (the bike itself). It was the first time riding it this spring and everything from hand position to how my shoulders were angled felt completely and utterly wrong and uncomfortable. Before buying and riding my Seven I thought that was a comfortable bike, I did several century rides on it which is unfathomable now. Riding with junior made the discomfort melt away. Afterwards we drove to Ferns for lunch.
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Old 05-11-19, 07:13 PM
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Took the Rawland out on the Minuteman before dinner. A jolly crowd thronged the path on a beautiful Spring Saturday evening.


More surprise salience popped up, this time subtly rendered images of marine life bolted to signposts in Arlington. How did they get there? How long have they been there?












A pleasant ride on a pleasant day.


rod
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Old 05-13-19, 03:20 PM
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Rolled out Monday afternoon on the Trucker DeLuxe and its 55mm Compass Rat Trap Pass Extralights, on a cool, breezy, gray afternoon, temperatures falling through the 50s and into the 40s, with a chilling headwind on the return.


The Lexington Burma Shave signs came out for a third year, and were quickly vandalized in many locations. After the novelty, humor, and nostalgic glow wore off (long since), all that was left was a busy, repetitive preaching that has finally worn out its welcome. Time for another good idea, I think.


Got home before the rain started, which was kind of the point today.


rod

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Old 05-14-19, 08:41 AM
  #8117  
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
The day (not too many days away) she pushes her own weight will be totally memorable.

Congrats.

-mr. bill
Thanks. She was super excited to see it and happily rode on it, but with all the cleaning and adjustments that I did I failed to check whether she fits on it until the last moment before the ride. She couldn't reach the pedals and it was very frustrating for her! I'll have to shave off 3 more inches somewhere for the next time.
I'm just glad to see her getting into cycling and enjoying it (she does very well these days on her kids bike but alas with training wheels on)

Originally Posted by rholland1951 View Post

The Lexington Burma Shave signs came out for a third year, and were quickly vandalized in many locations. After the novelty, humor, and nostalgic glow wore off (long since), all that was left was a busy, repetitive preaching that has finally worn out its welcome. Time for another good idea, I think.
rod
I still find them amusing after all these years.
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Old 05-14-19, 10:02 AM
  #8118  
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A short ride to and from making soup with and for forty hungry youth on Saturday.

A bunch of snaps barely in Cambridge, and one in Arlington Center.

This extension of the bikepath filled in a missing link. Just love the Sun peaking over Alewife here:


Why you ought not paint brutalist architecture:


Reminder that deferred maintenance hits all users - beware loose bricks:


Reminder that deferred maintenance hits all users - the only accessible entrance to the trains at Alewife on the left (for at least another year):


A rotary would be nice, but the paint seems to help:


Of course the Football field has ginormous lights. Amazing that bikepath lights can cause so much angst. (Cambridge/Somerville both said yes to lights.):


Thrilled that the world's dumbest stop signs were replaced, NOT EVEN A YIELD SIGN in their place:


First time I've ever turned off at this street, walk from here:


On the return:

Maybe someone can explain. I get the two vestigial railroad/bikepath signs. But what is the yield sign for?


-mr. bill
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Old 05-14-19, 07:50 PM
  #8119  
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June 9 Ride for Social Change (Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon)

Hello peeps, I posted this at Charity Events subforum and hope it's not out of place here: work at Bikes Not Bombs and we're looking for riders for our Bike Ride for Social Change to raise money for all of our youth and international programs. Itís actually our largest fundraiser of the year, and if you participate, in addition to making a huge difference, thereís a free t-shirt, free reusable water bottle and an after-party with free delicious food and music.

You can register as a rider or volunteer at www.bikesnotbombs.org/bike-a-thon. Thereís tons of rider support and rest stops with food for all 4 rides: 10, 30, 50 and 100 miles.

If you canít make it that day, or donít feel comfortable cycling:

There is actually another way you can support us. Weíve got a BNB Youth Team made up of our Youth Staff Members who are riding the Bike-A-Thon together to raise money this year. Our Youth Staff are the super cool teens who teach bike safety and mechanics in our Earn-A-Bike and Girls In Action programs. It would be awesome if you would consider making a donation to their team. Just click here to donate to the BNB Youth Team: https://secure.qgiv.com/event/team/835318/

We really need your help. BNB is a lean organization that relies on our grassroots donor base. One person at a time, we can change the lives of vulnerable individuals and impact communities by using the bicycle as a vehicle for social change. Please consider participating in our largest annual fundraiser. It is a great ride, very family-friendly, and a lot of fun.

Thanks so much for reading this and considering supporting our cause! Rene Milet

If you have any questions at all, or just want more info, please contact Angela Phinney at 617-522-0222.
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Old 05-15-19, 10:36 PM
  #8120  
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Maybe someone can explain. I get the two vestigial railroad/bikepath signs. But what is the yield sign for?


-mr. bill
I think the key is the big blue Minuteman banner, now fronting grass. At one time, that marked the terminus of that arm of the bike trail; I think the Yield sign dates from the period when that was still true, but the Arlington DPW had joined the current curving path to the old, straight one. When the straight section was later removed, the sign stayed, thus creating a little practical joke of the civil engineering kind. Or so I believe...

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Old 05-15-19, 10:51 PM
  #8121  
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Took the LHT out on the Minuteman for a mid-afternoon ride on a day that was grayer, cooler, and breezier than I had expected, and perhaps improved later. I spent most of my time titrating the saddle height, early-season tail-chasing. The crotch wants what it wants, the knees want what they want, and there's a sweet spot where nothing hurts and the pedal strokes produce enough power, which of course is what the brain wants. Here's a photo of today's result; as the legs get happier, I expect I'll have to do this a couple more times. The Paul QR seatpost clamp is helpful.


rod

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Old 05-17-19, 08:34 PM
  #8122  
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It's been a long time since I rode my bike to a candy store, but I did it yesterday. It was a pretty nice ride, starting at Fern's, then down Strawberry Hill to 27, to 117. I'll be adding this route to the list. This place has a bike rack, ice cream, and loads of candy.
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Old 05-18-19, 04:30 AM
  #8123  
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Being off from work Friday I did what any other cyclist would do, I rode my bike 49 miles on my Trek cross bike. It was raining the whole time. I also got to experience the overdue joy of fixing a flat in the rain too! I was on Cross st in Carlisle and after realizing that bouncy feeling isent from a cracked frame but rather a flat. I pulled into the end of a driveway at an abandoned house that was mostly obscured from the road. After wrestling my sopping wet waterproof gloves back on I quickly got my groove back and thankfully avoided another flat.
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Old 05-18-19, 04:33 AM
  #8124  
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Originally Posted by rholland1951 View Post
I think the key is the big blue Minuteman banner, now fronting grass. At one time, that marked the terminus of that arm of the bike trail; I think the Yield sign dates from the period when that was still true, but the Arlington DPW had joined the current curving path to the old, straight one. When the straight section was later removed, the sign stayed, thus creating a little practical joke of the civil engineering kind. Or so I believe...

rod
Believe it or not, thatís a new sign:



-mr. bill
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Old 05-18-19, 08:16 AM
  #8125  
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Believe it or not, thatís a new sign:



-mr. bill
You may have to squint, but the Yield sign is visible from this photo taken on 9-17-17, on the occasion of Arlington Town Day.


rod
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