So Laura OLPH was out of town, and Tom H took over her ride for today. He said he was "planning a 47ish mile moderately hilly ride with one stop, probably in New Hope."
Three of Tom's Insane Bike Posse took him up on the offer, out of the Park and Ride that's either in Yardley, Upper Makefield, or Washington Crossing, depending on whose GPS or mapping site you consider. I got there early, and helped a hapless newbie with her first tube change; but the time I was done, Jack and Tom were there, and Blake rolled in a few beats later.
Tom did his Holy Kickstand ritual (laugh if you want, but it seems to be working):
... and off we went on this ride.
You can tell from the elevation diagram that we started right off with a climb. I had a problem that I thought was a brake bind, but turned out to be that the rear quick-release had worked loose after I'd replaced the creaky rear wheel with one with radial left spokes. (I was whining last week about my creaky rear wheel problem; more in an upcoming post.)
We proceeded to Tyler Park, and rolled around a bit (there's a pretty path; one of the locals took us to task about riding the road bikes on a path with pedestrians until we assured her we'd only run two or three people off into the weeds). Jack discovered a loose bottle cage, and fixed it.
One of the things you can expect on a Tom H ride is a mechanical problem; we'd had two minor ones.
Another thing you can count on is a section of no paving (or sometimes, no road). Coming out of the park, we came upon the gravel road:
(It DID lead up to the first of two covered bridges, so there's that...) A few minutes later, we had to climb this...
... to get out of the park. (Can you see the log-stairs in the background?)
Another thing that happens on a Tom ride, but you can't count on it, is a detour. Jack pointed out that he'd owned a house along here years ago, and wanted to see it, so we adjusted the route to go by:
Tom spoke with nostalgia about the house, the garage he'd built:
... the guy he hired to move the boulders to the front (and the low taxes...).
And back we came. You can't COUNT on 3000 feet of climb in less than 50 miles... but don't be surprised if it happens!
(No ride yesterday; had another one of those Polish funerals, so I had plenty of calories to work off today.)