Here’s what you need to know: most of the crew on this trip also took part in the #maddwikkidtoouah expedition. Nearly all of us experienced the riding, the waiting, and the driving, OH THE DRIVING! The driving was a long, dull commute from Montpelier to Old Saybrook and then over to State College (Benedict kept saying he would prefer being strapped to the roof—such is his animal nature). So by the second day of our State College ride the crew was feeling run down. And we were all airing complaints about sore throats and slight fevers.
“Physical and emotional fatigue was obvious, and had manifested throughout our troop.”
Yesterday’s section was memorable for being long and grinding. After all day in the saddle we had arrived at our camp at dusk; we had no time to swim, we barely hung out, and there was a sense that we had embarked upon a forced march. The route had delivered exactly was asked of it, as our brief to Chris “Buck Wild” Tank was that we should aim to cover about 60 miles a day and to emphasize gravel roads, single track, and (if necessary) low-traffic back roads. But this is only what we thought we wanted. As the old adage goes, be careful what you wish for. So last night we had a all-hands meeting to discuss our wants and desires for this trip. The takeaways were as follows:
- Cut out the extraneous, just-for-the-mileage miles.
- More swimming.
- More naps.
- More goofing.
- Bring the joy back to bikepacking.
With these points in mind we set off on a more straightforward route. One that we hoped would have us at Bald Eagle State Park with plenty of time for some sunlight-backed-liquid-refreshment-recreation.11aka swimming One that we hoped would take us to an Original Italian Pizza joint for lunch. One that we hoped would give us a chance to nap in the shaded picnic area of a grocery store/gas station while Amish horses trotted along the nearby roads.
“Did our dreams come true? You’ll have to read below to find out.”