Thoughts on the Bike Path

2 Jul

Have you had a chance to check out the bike path along Route 104 yet?  For sure you’ve seen it as you’ve driven along the highway, and if you’ve ever walked along the sidewalk in front of North Ponds Park, you’ve actually been on it.  But have you actually ever explored it on your bike?

My husband and I logged a lot of miles on it last month, as I tackled my YCMA Staff Triathlon in June.   And one of the things I noticed on our rides is that it doesn’t seem to get much use.  In the last 35 days I’ve probably almost 50 miles back and forth from my home to the village, and (aside from North Ponds and dog walkers in the village)  I’ll bet I passed fewer than a dozen people.

I think part of the reason for that is that the path has gotten a bad rap. It’s completely paved, but there are several sections where the pavement, due to tree roots or frost heaving, is very uneven. My fancy new mountain bike, with shock-absorbing springs built into the frame, take the speed bumps pretty well. But I do feel sorry for anyone (of the male persuasion in particular) who does not think to stand up out of the seat as they ride over these outcroppings.

But you won’t find them along the entire length of the 6.1-mile trail, and there’s an entire section where the town has made an effort to smooth some of them over. And despite the fact that much of the route butts up right against the busy highway, there are many isolated and quite peaceful sections, especially east of North Avenue (Rt. 250) in the village, heading towards Phillips.

I must admit that before I started this Triathlon challenge, I had never been on the trail before myself. But now I can’t wait to spend a day, ride to the village for lunch, and then ride its whole length from Salt Road to Bay Road.  I hope to see you on it.

* * *
The 6.1-mile Rt. 104 Bike Trail can be accessed at any of the roads crossing route 104, including Salt Road, Phillips Road, North Ave. (route 250), Holt Road, Hard Road, Five Mile Line, Gravel Road, Maple Drive and Bay Rd.  If you’re packing your bikes in the car, parking is most convenient at North Ponds Park.

And while you’re there, the Bird Sanctuary Trail and the Hojack Trail are within spitting distance of North Ponds Park (not to mention the 1-mile long North Ponds Loop Trail). Make a day of it and explore some of Webster’s great natural resources.

Check out the Friends of Webster Trails website for more information about our town’s terrific trail system.

 

 

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