Saturday, July 31: St. Clairsville OH to 7 miles east of Monongahela PA on PA-136 - 80 miles ridden before dark
Lunch behind McDonald's, Washington PA
The weather cleared enough for us to leave behind our jackets.
Coming back onto the route, Houston PA, after two-mile wild goose chase
We were riding a "marked" Pennsylvania bike route. We realized we were lost in Cannonsville, and had to backtrack to this unmarked turn in Houston PA.
Mingo Creek Park, Washington County PA
A few sheltered miles between Houston and Monongahela PA
Unscheduled flat fix east of Monongahela PA
Our one flat on the trip occurred inexplicably.
Long Hollow PA (PA-136, just north of Rostraver Airport)
With the late start due to weather, we ran out of daylight after 80 miles of riding. We rode 40 miles in the car to our hotel, knowing that we would have to make up the distance over the next two days.
Sunday, August 1 - 7 miles East of Monongahela PA on PA-136 to Bald Eagle PA - 114 miles
Hotel Breakfast - 7am
Atkins nothing, dammit - give me carbohydrates
Back at Long Hollow
Carl rolled with his helmet off to keep cool during two nasty climbs that started the day.
Just West of Greensburg PA
Penn View Mountain
About 45 miles into our day, the climbs got long (follow red line (US-22) from west to east). From the topographic markings, we climbed about 1,000' in elevation to a 2,000' summit, and didn't even get a sign to photograph.
Our First Signed Peak
This was after about 60 miles of grueling up and down on PA-136, US-119 and US-22.
You know you're high up when the state sees the need to put in a weather station across from the sign.
When maps show roads that aren't marked (US-422(?) east of Ebensburg)...
"Come back to the interchange with the Chrysler dealership, turn left, and you'll find us somewhere on the way to Altoona."
You know you're lost when ...
Theoretically a few miles east of Ebensburg PA on US-422, but the signage suggests otherwise. From the arrangement of the letters on the lower sign, it appears the elves need to lay off the eggnog.
Our Second Signed Summit
Adding insult to injury, this was our greeting about 80 miles into our day.
By dusk we were in Bald Eagle PA (a little north of Tyrone) with 114 miles in for the day. 28 miles by car to Milesburg for the night.
Monday, August 2 - Bald Eagle to Milesburg PA - 28 miles
Ready to get back on schedule
Our "off" day turned into a ride day to get back on schedule. After a crisp 1-1/2 hours in the saddle, we had 440 miles under our wheels since Thursday, and began planning for the next six days to Provincetown. Carl's jersey is from Blue Sky Bicycles, a cool bike shop in Saratoga Springs NY. David's jersey reflects his mental status after too much time in the sun.
Off Day Bike Maintenance
Carl took responsibility for keeping our two-wheel transport in good running order. No, we have no idea how the hand towels got all the grease on them ...
Tuesday, August 3 - Milesburg to Wyalusing PA - 111 miles
Trying to go east to Williamsport
You'd think we were in Massachusetts, at Rte 128 (south) / I-95 (north). Just east of here we had to portage a mile by car on limited access US-220.
US-220, just west of Hughesville PA - lunch stop
Carl found this pastoral spot in front of a church for a lunch break.
Entering the Endless Mountains of North Central PA
Some things are too gruesome to photograph, but between Sonestown and Laporte PA we did another 1,000' climb in the scorching afternoon sun. The vultures thought they were going to get a feast, but we persevered. Topographic map link here, for those with a strong stomach.
Arrival at Wyalusing Hotel, Wyalusing PA
Lydia found a reasonably flat back route from Dushore to Wyalusing, which we gratefully took, and also arranged an interview with the Wyalusing Rocket-Courier. Five minutes after our arrival it was storming, so we had to consider ourselves quite lucky again.
Wednesday, August 4 - Wyalusing PA to Oneonta NY - 101/111 Miles
New Milford Bike Shop, New Milford PA
Just southwest of Montrose PA, David blew a spoke on his rear wheel, putting his bike out of commission. A local cyclist miraculously appeared a moment later (the first we had seen in days!) to tell us about this bike shop, just 10 miles away, which quickly made the repair and got us on our way.
Just north of New Milford we crossed into New York.
Afton NY - Lunch Stop
Eastward-moving showers caught up with us at our lunch stop in Afton. Carl rides sockless in the rain, leading to their removal here. We were able to outrun the weather and arrived in Oneonta dry.
The PMC arranged an interview with the Oneonta Daily Star and David signed autographs for the front desk staff at the Holiday Inn (some day those will be valuable, ladies, honest!).
Photos continue on our New York page.