Day 5

29 July 2003
Lakeville, CT to Tillson, NY
72.7m, 5h52m, 12.4mph

The Interlaken Inn had a continental buffet breakfast, but it cost $11, so we ate as much as we could before setting out on Day 5. Once again the weather was perfect. After a few miles we crossed into New York--my home state. We stopped briefly at a convenience store in Millerton to stock up on drinks and then set out in earnest.

Entering New York near Millerton

Just outside of Millerton we encountered the nastiest climb of the entire trip--about 500 feet in 1/2 mile. There was a nice view from the top of rolling farmland and more hills. We rolled into Pine Plains and took another short break at the local Stewart's. After an easy stretch, we stopped again at Stanfordville and then resumed climbing. We passed several large estates, some of which were under construction. This is an area where many New York-based celebrities maintain country houses. Some of them are tasteful, some of them don't really fit in.

Eventually we crossed under the Taconic State Parkway, which runs along the top of the Taconic Mountains. Here's a little-known fact: The Taconics are the oldest mountains in the world. They were formed the first time the North American and European continents bumped into each other. The Appalachians were formed the second time the same two continents collided. The Taconics used to be as big as the Rockies, but in the last zillion years they have eroded down to the large hills that they are now.

We descended into Rhinebeck and found a deli where we picked up turkey sandwiches and several pounds of other foods. There was a small neighborhood park nearby so we ate there amongst the mothers and children and geese and ducks.

Our route took us south out of Rhinebeck on US9. The road had moderate traffic but there was a nice shoulder for most of the way to Poughkeepsie. Just outside of Staatsburg a truck stopped us and asked us where Mulford Road. I told him, "It's probably down there by that big tree." I am cyclist. I know all.

We stopped at the Vanderbilt Mansion just outside of Hyde Park. We didn't have time for a tour so we just tooled around the grounds a bit and took pictures.

Our bikes in the Drive at the Vanderbilt's

JT on the Vanderbilt grounds

After we left the Vanderbilt's place we pedaled the 3 miles to their neighbors, the Roosevelt's. We paid our respects and walked around a bit. The FDR library and museum is undergoing an expansion and there's quite a bit of construction going on there.

FDR and Eleanor

The FDR Home

Finally it was time to leave the dead rich people behind and try to find the Mid-Hudson Bridge. The traffic got heavier as we approached Poughkeepsie. The Adventure Cycling route wanted us to ride past a "No Bikes" sign and turn left. We decided to take the turn before that one. We followed some unrelated bike route signs through town and somehow got to the bridge. The sign said to walk our bike across, but the sidewalk was plenty wide enough so we rode (it's about a mile across). The weather was still perfect so we spent some time on the bridge and took a few pictures.



On the other side of the bridge, the route follows the old, mostly abandoned bridge approach into Highland. From there we rode west to New Paltz and then north to Tillson, where my dad lives. We had an excellent dinner and laundry (thanks Lesley!)--and it was 100% cheaper than the Interlaken Inn.

Intro | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10 | Summary