Thursday, March 8, 2012

Astoria to The World Trade Center via the Hudson River Greenway (32.01 miles)

Today was another unseasonably warm, clear, and beautiful day in old New York.

Having never rode the Hudson River Greenway I felt I was long overdue.

I thought I would try to pace myself a bit, and decided that mapping a route to the West side was unnecessary. I used the Triboro Bridge for a path Uptown and rode the East River Esplanade to 89th street cutting halfway crosstown to enter Central Park and use the loop as a way further West. Shamelessly avoiding Cat Hill in Central Park, I exited at 7th Avenue traveling even further uptown as far as 144th Street Riverbank State Park.

Finding the entrance to the Hudson River Greenway from that point was a little challenging, and my instincts were on track, but then I second guessed myself, climb back up to the path, and asked a gentleman how to find the Greenway.He confirmed that the narrow, steep, little hill I had just climbed back up was indeed the way to the Greenway.

Finally on the paths, face into the intense winds, I was struck by how well maintained, modern, and busy these paths are compared to the East River Esplanade. Still trying to pace myself a bit, I was stopping more than usual, for water, and checking my camera. During one of these pit stops on the Greenway a woman approached me with her 2 tiny girls, possibly twins, of maybe 2 years old. They were both pushing strollers, and followed their mother over to me when she approached and asked if I could explain to them that they need to be careful not to push strollers into the path of bicycles. They seemed so young, I used very basic language to explain that myself, and the bike are large, and they are small, and that the bike moves very fast and can be dangerous. I then bid the mother and children farewell, and ground back into the wind.

After passing the piers, and the Intrepid, I arrived near the Southwestern tip of Manhattan, where I could gaze up at the Freedom Tower as it's being built.

The Greenway abruptly ends here due to construction, so I felt it was time to turn my back to the wind and glide North, turning East at 51st Street. I then used 51st Street to cut crosstown to First Ave, and climb the 59th Street Bridge for my trip home.At some point heading North, the battery in my camera died. The only things I would have liked to have shot were the 6 policemen I saw escorting a man at the foot of the 59th Street bridge in handcuffs, and my descent down the Queens side of the bridge. Both of those are pretty unimportant to today's ride as a whole, so I feel it's no great loss.

My mileage for the month so far is much higher than my usual average, and today I was feeling it. I likely will not ride tomorrow, or Saturday.

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