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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Northern Transcon Day 28 - Niagara Falls ON to Geneva NY

Breakfast in the parking lot under cloudy skies - I finish up and go finish packing my gear bag and come out to a wet parking lot with rain coming down hard.  No one likes starting out in the rain at 6:30 am, but the finish isn't getting any closer by sitting around.  Thunderstorms were predicted to be scattered throughout the day, so off we rolled.  Fortunately, Niagara Falls' city traffic is pretty light early on Saturday, as riding in the rain requires extra precaution and maneuvering room to avoid water filled holes, slick manhole covers, etc.

 We passed through US Customs after two miles, and then the rain really picked up for the next hour.  I did have on shoe covers, helmet cover, and saddle cover but had shed my jacket at US Customs due to the warm temperature.  There isn't much to do to try and stay dry - it is a losing proposition and the best thing is to just adapt and live with being wet.  Safety is the most important thing which means good taillights, reflective wear, and not riding close together.

I was caught in three of these heavy downpours throughout the day, but they were each followed by clearing skies, warm/hot sun, and humidity.  Country roads past farms provided good cycling, and the roads were generally in good condition.  We encountered one bridge out with some road closed signs, but in some cases it is possible to walk through a construction zone with a bike, when nothing is going on.  However, the only way around was down a muddy bank and through a field, then back up the bank on the other side.  I learned from an experience a few years ago on the Flint Hill Rd in NC to not roll my bike through mud, but carry it.  So I shouldered the bike and managed to get through without slipping and falling.  Our shoes and cleats were totally mud encased, but we found some pointed sticks to get them in a semi-working condition.  Later riders used a 2 mile detour around the construction zone.

We now face some tough climbing through the Finger Lakes region.  There are only four more riding days before we arrive in Boston (actually, Peabody).

A wet departure from Niagara Falls
John from Chicago (partial tour rider) has the only recumbent
Evidence of going through some mud
More mud

Thunderstorms followed us most of the day
Putting away rain jacket, only to need it again in an hour


  1. Getting closer ... so good to see where your photos.


  2. "Pointed sticks". I'm assuming you kept one to defend yourself against an assailant armed with fresh fruit?

  3. Well do I remember that ride on Flint Hill Rd that you reference. I recall I was in Seagrove, taking a break, when you and a couple of the Tidewater Bent-Boys showed up. Mud, mud, mud. Luckily there was an available hose at the Seagrove control.

    I had to look to my blog post of that ride (http://irregularveloadventures.blogspot.com/2013/05/may-11-mud-pit-possum-400-km-brevet.html) since you didn't blog that one.