Sunday, March 18, 2012

Astoria to High Bridge Park, and the Hudson River Greenway (26.07 miles)

When I set out for my ride this afternoon I had initially planned to ride over the George Washington Bridge and then head South along River Road.

Arriving at 155th Street I decided to follow the Manhattan Greenway further north rather than head West to the George Washington Bridge.

At first I marveled at how deserted this path was, but then quickly realized that it was likely due to the fact that all of these paths were in terrible disrepair. This is a real shame as the views this path offers are fantastic. Soon I found myself where Harlem River Drive meets Dykman , and I found myself at the foot of High Bridge Park. I decided to enter High Bridge Park and start the steep climb up. At one point, I dismounted and walked, not interested in dumping too much energy into one harsh climb. Now at the top of the hill I descended through the winding path with beautiful panoramic views of the river below. I did not want to go as fast as possible as I had never rode in this park. This proved to be smart when I quickly came upon some stairs and was able to barely skid to a stop.

Walking as far South as I could I found that this park did not continue any further in this direction, and that I would have to either go back the the Manhattan Greenway (the way I came) or try to head West from here. Seeing how the descent back to the entrance to the Manhattan Greenway looked fairly scenic, with jagged cliffs rising on my Left, and the river rolling on my right I decided to head back the way I had come from. I rode fast down this hill, but should have held back as at one point there were severe potholes I had to dodge, followed by 2 treacherous gaps I had to double hop at a decent speed, rattling myself, and my bike a bit.

When I once again reached the pedestrian bridge back into the Bronx, I crossed paths with a middle aged Canadian couple asking for some directions. I pointed them where they wanted to go, and climbed back up to 155th Street. Heading West on 155th Street I cut across town to the small parks along Riverside Drive, above the Hudson River Greenway. I passed the entrance I knew about down to the Greenway, but quickly realized my mistake and turned around, dropping down onto the paths. Far less wind here than on my last trip, I was able to have a much more pleasant Southerly ride. Many riders, runners, and some skaters, on this path as usual. I carefully picked my way down the path until I reached the Intrepid, where I patronized her terribly overpriced vending machines for a granola bar, and some iced tea. After some shots of the Intrepid and a few other vessels nearby I got back on the path heading back the way I had come from until I reached 51st Street. I used 51st Street to cut across town once more, this time heading East, shooting clips at Broadway near Times Square, passing Radio City and Rockfeller Center, and St. Patricks Cathedral, before turning on 1st Avenue towards the 59th Street Bridge, and home.

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