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hendersons hide-a-way campground, south royalton vt, friday 9/1/23, 21:49

today was a big day.  we got up early, pretty chilly, and got ourselves ready to go.  we were out of the campground and on the road by 7:30.  a heavy fog blanketed the countryside so we couldn’t see very far ahead of us, but we didn’t have to see very far to know that we were climbing already.  today started with a ton of climbing and in the middle there was a ton of climbing and at the end there was a nice descent! 

my legs were hurting from the get go as we crawled up some huge hills, stopping in the sun to shed our layers and continuing on at our snails pace.  we climbed a lot and didn’t descend very much it seemed.  we clattered through a bunch of the class 4 roads vt is known for, choosing our lines very carefully as there were a lot of washouts from the flooding this summer.

finally, we made it to gramps country store, an absolute haven of snacks and kind people.  after eating our fill we slowly ached back onto our bikes and started up yet ANOTHER big climb.  for context, 100 ft of climbing in a mile is considered a lot of climbing, and rides that average around that are considered to be very hilly rides.  today, we were consistently doing closer to 150 feet of climbing a mile - by mile 25, we had climbed up 4000 feet.  so we were pooped!  I was feeling it pretty hard today and Joe was providing lots of good energy and silliness to keep spirits up and keep us moving forward.

other highlights of the day :

  • seeing a momma bear and her two cubs crossing the road right in front of me

  • carefully navigating a section of extremely washed out class 4 road

  • r tire slowly losing air, going to pump it up, pump not working, taking it all apart and cleaning it and testing it and putting it back together and it seemed to be working and then  the handle fully disconnected from the plunger

  • walking for a while carrying my very heavy bike while joe rode ahead to look for a helpful person with a pump

  • helpful people with a pump arriving and helping us

  • making the decision to cruise into town and eat at a restaurant and camp closer to town rather than getting food and riding another 20 miles

  • a long extremely fun and fast downhill

  • eating burgers and fries and drinking cold beer

  • riding in the dark to our campsite

from jacob on 9/24/2023:

i was very tired when writing this journal, so i wasn't quite so thorough!  the basics were that it was a long day with a lot of riding uphill.  We were really out in the woods and came across lots of angry dogs and less than friendly folks. I was going very slow, and then got a flat, ugh! 

Despite the challenge of this day, it ended up being one of my favorite on the trip.  After getting my tire filled and flying downhill, we rode fast on a busy road to get to town.  This was the most populated place we'd seen the whole trip, and it was fun, felt like we had made it somewhere!  We ate these fantastic burgers and drank a couple very nice beers (all very local), and enjoyed sitting outside and relaxing for a while, watching the sun set and listening to the people talking and laughing around us.  When we were finally ready to go, it was nighttime.  We put our lights on and cruised down the road to a *hopeful* campsite.  And they were so kind and welcomed us with open arms!  We flopped into our tent, it was late, I wrote this journal entry, but my eyes were closing.  I slept very well.

i had to do some repairs to try to stop my tire from leaking, making a fool of myself next to the restaurant patio.  fortunately joe captured some pictures for posterity!


Distance: 60.8 miles

Elapsed Time: 13hr25

Ascent: 7,316 feet

Starting Time: 7:31

Finishing Time: 20:56


Distance: 170.5 miles

Elapsed Time: 28hr52

Ascent: 16,939 feet

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