- Miles Today: 38.3 @ 9.2 mph
- Difficulty: 5 out of 5
- Execution: 4.5 out of 5
- Fun/Interesting: 6 out of 5
- Total: 15.5 out of 15
This was a great day, a great way to end the trip! I went for a swim in the Susquehanna River on a blazing hot day and arrived at Marvin and Debbie’s house in good shape and on schedule!
The day started inauspiciously with breakfast at McDonald’s across the road. I had expected to eat breakfast at Friendly’s, but they are no longer open for breakfast. There is a Perkins 2 miles back, but that did not seem worth it, even if I rode there and back with no luggage. So two egg McMuffins and two hash browns and a Diet Coke it was. It was disgustingly good.
After going back to the room and packing up, I was pedaling by 8:20am, a very good time for me. I immediately proceeded to climb up Route 54, reaching the top 36 minutes and 2.0 miles later, at an average speed of 5.1 mph. I sailed down the other side at well over 30 miles per hour for about 2 and 1/2 miles. It was worth the climb.
That was the last big climb of the day until the final approach to Marvin’s house. Most of the day was rolling up and down. I didn’t have to walk after that first climb, although I did have to stop and catch my breath on quite a few occasions. I was off the Adventure Cycling route from the get-go today, so Google Maps and my memories from having lived in the area was all I had to go on. Fortunately it was sufficient.
My brother lives in a neighborhood near the top of Maybe Hill, and when I say near the top, I mean near the top on the other side. In all the years he’s lived here and I have been a cyclist, I have ridden a bike up to his house maybe a dozen times. Prior to today, none of those dozen times was on a loaded touring bike. (When I rode through Williamsport on my cross country ride 2 years ago, I took a ride from Marvin in his pickup truck from down in the valley up to his house.) Out of those dozen times, I was able to ride up without walking maybe half. So today, there was no doubt I was walking up the final hill.
It was a beautiful day today for Central Pennsylvania riding: hot (mid-90s), sunny, verdant, scenic. The numbered highways were not my favorite choice of riding roads but they weren’t bad, and traffic was definitely not bad. As has been the case this entire trip, I had no problems with the drivers, although many stretches were scary nonetheless.
When I passed through the town of Muncy, I was looking for a place to eat lunch. According to Google Maps, Pop’s Place was up ahead, but I had little confidence that it was open or actually existed. Fortunately a local guy was pulled up next to me at a stoplight, so I asked his opinion. He said they made really good cheese steak sandwiches. That certainly turned out to be correct!
Later, I was riding along the Susquehanna River between Montoursville and Williamsport when I passed a boat landing. It looked too enticing, so I went for a swim. At first I was worried that I might get chafing with wet shorts, but I figured my shorts are soaked through many times from sweat or rain and it’s never really been an issue.
So I parked the bike and sat at a picnic table, got out my Crocs, took off my shoes and socks and jersey and sun shirt, walked down to the boat landing and walked in the water. It was incredibly awesome! The water felt really clean and just the perfect temperature.
Afterwards, I sat at the picnic table and chatted with a local guy, when two people, a man and a woman in their 50s, pulled up in their car with a spiffy looking boat on top. It turns out the boat was a single racing kayak, but they were two people. So I walked over to chat and ask them about their boat because I have never seen one like that. It turned out that she was going to paddle, and he was going to sit and read a book.
So we were talking for a few minutes when the guy looks at me and says “Is your name Dan?” I answered yes, how did you know? I thought he was going to say “I know your brother”, but instead he said that they were good friends with my good friend Greg, who lives here in town. Greg had mentioned me to them, because they were both active cyclists, and in fact Greg had mentioned them to me, because they are both active cyclists. What a small world we live in!
That is it for now. I’ll be working on the ride report and have that done as soon as possible. Realistically it will take me a week or two. In the meantime, I’m going to bed.