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Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pittsburgh through Portlander Eyes

9.28.2014 27m
Got to escort a group of ten out-of-town cyclists from their Pittsburgh hotel out onto the GAP today with R. They're from Portland (which I've never been to) which I think of as a cycling mecca so I was intrigued at how they saw Pittsburgh.

The previous day they had cycled down to the Point, then took their bikes up the Incline and got the view from Mt. Washington. They were very positive about Pittsburgh and bike-accessibility.

Sunday morning when we greeted the group one of the riders had a maintenance issue so R took her over to REI while I started the others out on the trail. REI wasn't open yet but one of their mechanics had started early and took a look at the bike. That's the second time this year we've had this experience at REI Southside and I appreciate it so much.

The gang-of-Nine and I rolled to the PumpHouse and did the history briefing. There was a Community Market going on and some local winery was selling wine, which turned out to be a great thing when the visitors learned you can't buy wine at 7-11s on Sundays in the Commonwealth. Achievement unlocked: obtain wine for the evening.

We continued along the trail, doing show-and-tell at the Whittaker Flyover and the Phantom's Revenge, and then R. and SB joined us. We rode through McKees Landing which was having an antique car cruise display, then over to PortVue. Today instead of using the sidewalk we used the roadway shoulder and that worked really well, I think I'm going to do that from now on.

In PortVue we found some fellow cyclists "stopped and stumped" where the trail flows into the shared road. It really isn't intuitive that the road is the path to follow, and there's no signs there so we told them they were on the right path.

Up and over the Durabond ByPass, the third hill of the day (two flyovers plus the bypass). Dead Man's Hollow and the Boston Trailhead, where their van was waiting with lunch.

We said goodbye to the party their and reversed. These Portland visitors were really impressed at Pittsburgh. 27 miles.

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