2016 BAC VT Northeast Kingdom Fall Foliage
September 26 - Montgomery Center to Newport
Last evening at Happy Hour, Julie heard me say that I was riding the shorter route in the morning. She nudged me and asked if we could ride together. We have cycled together many times in Italy because our pace is similar and we enjoy our company. Julie is faster on the ascents, even more so as I get older and lose strength. I am faster on the descents. We complement each other.
I stayed at the Phineas Swan Inn with one other rider. The rest of the group were at The Inn which is much larger. This meant that Michael Calderaro and I were forced to eat a special breakfast cooked by Darren, our innkeeper. We were served fresh fruit along with blackberry stuffed French toast with real maple syrup which was made just down the street. We also had some tasty thick patties of sausage as our protein. Yummy! The Inn was next door so we were able to get over to it and meet our 9:00 deadline to get our bags in the luggage trailer.
Julie and I started riding with Stu Shakman. We stayed together for all of the route except for the last few miles when Stu grabbed on to Marion and Alice Campbell and left us in the dust. The temperature at the start was in the low 40s, but the sun was out and the sky was blue. I began to feel warmer except where we passed a patch of grass with frost on it.
Although the route was not very long, we had to climb some very steep rollers. This slowed us down and warmed us up. We passed into Canada and rode on a designated scenic route. Our route went beside a picturesque stream for a while, but most of it was through farmland. One farm had Oreo cookie cows. There were no places to stop for food so we had to munch on nature bars and other snacks that we brought along. After passing into the US, we found a large store that had other things to eat but no real food. That got us the rest of the way into Newport.
Vermont has lots of corn fields. It is grown mainly for silage and grain. After the corn is harvested, some fields are turned into popular mazes for fun and profit. We saw many fields with the corn stalks still standing, but other fields were bare.
We are staying at the Newport City Inn and Suites just outside of the town. Our rooms were in the old section. They were typical motel rooms, but they were clean and had hot water. After I checked in, I walked across the street and bought a large muffin and a large bottle of Rogue IPA. There was not much of a selection of local beer so I stayed with a familiar one.
I was a volunteer helper at Happy Hour tonight in the motel's breakfast room. I cut up cheese, sliced apples, washed dishes and helped clean up. After Julie reviewed administrative things, Tom did a route wrap for tomorrow's ride. After that, we one-by-one talked about our careers. In future meetings, we will present other personal information. The Leevers call this bonding. We have to pay attention to everyone's history because we will have to randomly introduce someone to the group at one of our last meetings.
I joined Paul Ciano, Helene Motyka and Michael Calderaro for dinner at Wok and Roll, a Chinese restaurant next to the motel. A Spring roll, sweet and sour chicken and brown rice with pork was my meal. It was good fuel.
Back at the motel, I got my room organized so I could watch the presidential debate.