This is one of my favorite routes, but it has seemed to have a hex on it this year. Various problems have arisen the last couple of times the club has ridden it. This time it was everything that it should be.
Joe, Kevin, and I set off from David's a little past 7:30. (We learned later that we just missed Dan. Sorry.) We rode an enjoyable pace up to 218. We moderated the descent, but the holes had been repaired, just as Ken had told us. We climbed back up to the overlook, where we stopped for pictures and ran into Scott and Mitch.
After crossing the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge, we started working pretty efficiently together, picking up a fourth rider along the way. The pleasure of that part of the ride was enhanced by the fact that they have repaved south of Cold Spring, so there is new pavement all the way to the Bear Mountain Bridge.
All along 9D we kept passing groups of young riders. Eventually we learned that they were incoming freshmen at Columbia, enjoying a bonding experience. Go Lions!
We were back on Route 304 coming into New City when I felt something in my jersey. I knew it was a wasp when started stinging me. Ouch. When I stopped and shooed it away, it got my finger for good measure. Good thing I'm not allergic, but it still was not the fun part of the day.
Joe set the pace for most of the ride, challenging Kevin and me to ride at our limits. We were happy at the end to find that we had completed 75 miles on the plus side of the advertised pace. It was a great day to be on the bike, and being with a couple of terrific RBC riders made it one of my most enjoyable rides of the summer.