Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Ride to Montauk

This was a 151 mile ride from Manhattan to the Montauk Point lighthouse at the very end of Long Island.  There were also 108, 70, and 30 mile options that started along the 151 mile course, all ending at the Montauk Point lighthouse. Jeff Douglas was supposed to ride with Katie Spear and me.  But as Jeff and I were cycling from our hotel down 7th Avenue to the start outside Madison Square Garden, Jeff's drop bag bumped into his front wheel, breaking two spokes. This knocked the wheel out of alignment and the spokes could not be repaired or replaced since there was no mechanic at the start and no spare wheel was available. So unfortunately, Jeff could not ride with Katie and me. We both felt really bad for Jeff.
Cycling down 7th Avenue to 31st St.

Once we realized that Jeff's front wheel could not be fixed, Katie and I got started at 5:30AM.  Our route crossed town on 34th Street and then went down Second Avenue to the Willamsburg Bridge.

Mile 1, riding cross town on 34th St.

Crossing the East River on the Williamsburg Bridge
After crossing the East River, the ride took us east on Metropolitan Ave. to Jamaica, then down Merrick Ave. and into Nassau County near Lynbrook.

The flags were in our face all day
Once out on Long Island, we had a headwind of about 10mph the rest of the day. SAG stops were at miles 42 (Babylon), 65 (Bluepoint Brewery), 93 (Westhampton), and 119 (Water Mill Village). The route was along the southern side of the island.
Katie and Joe, still smiling at 93 miles
Katie is an awesome rider and rode very well, especially considering she did not specifically train for this ride. In fact, she did not do any cycling in preparation. Recently, she ran a half marathon in Bermuda and that had been her focus.  Surprisingly, both of us felt pretty good the entire way, though this was 30 miles more than either of us had ever cycled before in a single day.

Katie, at the century mark

Getting towards the end of the island. Here at mile 147.
It was nice to reach the Montauk lighthouse.  Despite living on Long Island for the first 25 years of my life, this was only the second time I had been to the lighthouse.  The race director had the finish well organized with plenty of food, drink, and hot showers. After taking a shower and having a good hot meal, it was time for Karen and me to make the two hour drive back to my dad's house in North Babylon.  Katie, thanks for riding with me. I had a great time.

At the finish
Joe and Karen after the ride

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