Type 2 Diabetic. Bike tour guide. #NextBurgh Flâneur.   Coffeeneur.    Errandoneur
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Rockwood to West Newton Bike Trip, Day Two

11-06-03 #???
74 miles, 5h35m
A few words about the Rockwood Hostel. It was great, in terms of basic shelter and showers for less than $30. Wifi, cable TV, coin-operated laundry; it was all good. I imagine your experience will vary with the quality of people you find yourself rooming with.

Suggestions for the Hostel: it would be great to have a floor pump, and it would be great to have individual lockers you could secure valuables in. I believe there's going to be Pittsburgh people using the Rockwood Hostel as a base for a 3-day trip: (1) West Newton to Rockwood, (2) Rockwood east to Cumberland and back, and (3) Rockwood back to West Newton. The qualities of the GAP are so far superior to the C&O that this sort of a 3-day trip, at less then $30/night for lodging, makes sense.

It was a bit brisk at wakeup, about 48F. We repacked the bikes and departed Rockwood, planning on eating breakfast 19 miles down the trail at Sister's in Confluence. This was a mistake for me, I should have eaten first, so I got dizzy and we ended up stopping so I could eat and stabilize the blood sugar.

As we rode into Confluence, we re-entered cellphone coverage and our phones beeped and told us we had messages and missed calls. We had an excellent breakfast as Sister's Cafe, as expected, and we sat in the town square and returned phone calls.

We rode into Ohiopyle and took a break there, then we rode to Connellsville, bought lunch at Sheetz, and ate it at the park. I took a long break after I ate and that worked real well for me.

I find that I'm somewhat low energy after I've eaten, and between 40minutes and 55minutes after I eat I get real low energy, and at 55 minutes something clicks and I feel good to go again.

We rode on to West Newton uneventfully, covering 74 miles in 5h35 minutes. That's a good time, recognizing that it was downhill (yesterday at 5h55m was climbing) and that today was our second day on the bike.

Lessons Learned:
  • Can't ride without breakfast
  • I need to wait an hour after I eat a meal, just like my mother always told me about waiting an hour before I swam
  • Size matters in twisting tools, and my mini-tool doesn't provide a sufficient arm-length for torque
  • Seventy miles is my new "perfect daily distance".

We saw a lot of people traveling with overnight loads, several recumbents, several Bob-Trailers. We encountered deer on the trail three different times, and I ran over one two-foot snake before I realized it.

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