Riding the Rail Trails

Yesterday Susan, Mike, Matt, Pyg, and I decided it would be a good day for a bike ride. Susan is just getting used to a bike with gears, so heading out to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail seemed like the thing to do.

It’s about a 40 minute drive from our house to Amenia, one of the main park and ride points for the rail trail. From Amenia you can ride 8 miles north, to Millerton, or 2.5 miles south, to the start of the trail. Along the way you ride past farms, streams, a swamp or two, and lamas. It took us just under an hour to get to Millerton, where the rail trail currently ends, awaiting completion of section 4 of the trail (sometime in 2008), which will add another 8 miles, and connect in the already completed section 5, which is 4 miles on it’s own. The ride back is slightly down hill, which meant we were flying along at 15 mph most of the way. 16 miles in 1:45 isn’t bad for a Sunday afternoon, especially considering everyone was riding mountain bikes.

It was the first ride out for most folks of the year, so there was the normal amount of “seat numbness”, but subsequent rides should have everyone toughened up enough that that won’t be an issue. It’s great to get out and explore a new area. I think next time we’ll probably start at the beginning of the trail, and remember our wallets, so we can get a little bite to eat in Millerton, then spin around and come home. I honestly can’t wait until the full 23 miles is opened up, as that would make a really nice full day trek.

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