Sharon and I rode from the George Washington Bridge north to Albany on Saturday. Great ride for us. Could have been less hot in the afternoon, but it's hard to complain when you get a tailwind most of the way.
A little over 160 miles with about 9000 vertical feet of climbing the way we took. There are shorter + simpler routes, but ours was interesting + pretty enough to motivate us to ride now a third time the whole thing (plus lots more times most of the sections).
We started long before sunrise, so we got to ride familiar 9W in the dark, and then along the river from Piermont to Nyack at dawn -- one of the main reasons we've decided we like to do this from south to north. Then up the west side thru the Stony Point beaches to Bear Mt and the Storm King Mt road looking across the river to the morning shadow on the Breakneck cliff.
Above Newburgh we turned inland for some pleasant rollers thru orchards, then the Walkway over the Hudson with its big river views, to Poughkeepsie. (Happy thought: Still feeling good all the way to Poughkeepsie. Sobering thought: Less than half way). Next found quieter roads further inland on the east side up to Rhinebeck with lots of food options.
But with the heat it was getting hard for us to want to eat any food solider than gelato, and every uphill we were too slow and hot -- then just over every top we were flying with the south wind. Lots of pretty farm country thru northern Dutchess + Columbia + southwest Rensselaer counties (with a critical cold-fueling stop near Hudson).
Finally around 6:00pm we started hitting more shadows extending to our side of the road, finding we had some energy to climb hills. Anyway the last few miles into Rensselaer were flat, just a little climb up the sidewalk across the Hudson River (much less wide) and we'd made it to Albany.
Our favorite long route, but the variety and quieter roads come with complexity. Few people would try much of it without a GPS to help navigate, so here's a
(also with some alternate tracks we've used other times)
And here's a much more
Glad we got this ride in before the hotter days.
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