Miles to Date: 622
May 15, 2015 – Sunny, 60 degrees
I had a big task today: 82 miles plus over 4,000 feet in elevation change. So, I abandoned my custom of a long afternoon break and took short but frequent stops instead. I got a bag of GORP, which I ate every ten miles or so. That, along with a breakfast bagel sandwich, sausage and pepper sub, 2 diet cokes, a quart of Powerade and a big cookie, were all consumed by the time I got to my destination shortly after 4 p.m. This proved a better strategy for long distance days than arriving after five or six.
The first third of my route was a beautiful ride along US Route 5 through the Connecticut River Valley. I passed large farms, rocky waterfalls, and travelled through many lovely towns. Windsor is particularly charming, and was the place where Vermont’s Constitution was signed. I never knew that Vermont was an independent country from 1777 until it joined the union as the fourteenth state in 1791.
Then came a series of rises through Springfield, Chester and Londonderry. The greens were amazing, the yard sculptures odd, and the forest so dense the wind was never a factor.
The last section took me over Bromley Mountain and back down into Manchester. The climb was fine though long. The decent – over three miles of 8% grade – was all the thrill ride I ever need.
My housemate Paul is from this part of Vermont, so I know it well. I stopped at his usual grocery, got take-out for dinner, and was happy to be in my motel room on the far side of town for a relaxing evening.