Photo by Jason DeVarennes

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

DROVES 2014 - Day 3

Dirt Roads of Vermont Early Summer 2014

Photos from other DROVERS

from Steve and Carolyn
Day 1 and 2
Day 3

from Henry


Constantin arrived late Sunday night bringing yet another new set of fresh legs. But before he could climb away from all our tired legs that morning, Chef Henry cooked up some fabulous Dutch pancakes. 

The forecast for the day was classically Irish, and this one proved to be classically accurate. It was cloudy and showery and sunny and showery and sunny and cloudy and showery. Every time it started to rain, a few folks would stop and put on jackets. As it continued more people would stop and don jackets. Once everyone had stopped to put their jackets on, the rain would stop and the sun would come out. Then various folks would stop at different times to remove jackets. Once the last jacket was removed, it would start to rain again, on cue. Repeat this pattern for 6 hours and you have our day. This is classic Irish weather !

A bit grey at the barn this morning

In the land of giant nuts, bolts and jacks!

A regrouping turned into sheltering while a shower passed by

Despite having fenders on her bike, Carolyn has dirt freckles thanks to lack of fenders from riders ahead!

Shadowy evidence of occasional sunshine

The Seven Cycles Evergreen marketing campaign continues!

Ted seems happy with his new Evergreen

Puking Pig fountain at Lyndon Institute

A wee bit of dirt

Bike washing seemed very popular over the weekend

In between the clothing changes, we also enjoyed more exquisite scenery, lovely smooth dirt roads, brutally rough paved roads, lots of climbing, lots of descending, a few loose dogs, various sightings of hogs, llamas, sheep, and cows, and some pretty impressive logging equipment.

Despite the wet conditions, cameras were out frequently.

I had announced at breakfast that the lunch stop was pretty late in the ride and that I could not confirm that it would actually be open on Memorial Day. I learned my lesson on Easter Sunday about counting on stores being open and announcing a lunch stop to a hungry group of cyclists!  In previous editions of DROVES, we'd ridden this route on Saturday, and I could not find a website for the wine shop/lunch stop to check their hours. Despite my warnings at breakfast, the questions about lunch started about 15 miles into our 66 mile ride. No one ever listens to the announcements :-(

I must say when we arrived in Danville and found that the wine store was indeed open, I was quite relieved! No lynching of route designers today. Our timing was also perfect as the sun came out and we enjoyed a lunch of cheese and salami and crackers, a perfect accompaniment to the wine we did NOT buy, much to the shopkeepers disappointment. At least I'm blaming the lack of wine sales for his less than chipper demeanor.

Next up we had a couple more big climbs and a few covered bridges to pass through, as well as the mandatory photo-op at the Puking Pig water fountain near Lyndon Institute. The final climb up Darling Hill came as a relief to our well abused legs, but was bittersweet as it meant our holiday was almost over. Everyone seemed quite content to stop for more photos, and then go for one more ice cream in the village before heading back to the barn.

Most of the group showered and packed up to head home after helping to finish off the leftover Dutch pea soup. But 5 of us stayed for a final night, and got to enjoy the sound a rain hammering down on the metal roof throughout the night. I, for one, was quite happy not to be driving home in those conditions.

The next morning, we enjoyed a last breakfast and then said "au revoir" to the barn for the weekend.

We had to take care not to leave Burke with cool cat, Megatron, in our car. Megatron is the sweetest friendliest cat, and he seemed quite eager to check out our vehicles as we packed up. Just don't tell Izzi and Cocoa!

We have a few other adventures tentatively planned for the summer, but plan to be back in East Burke over Labor Day for ANVILS - Ascending Northern Vermont In Late Summer (or with Lovely Scenery). Hammering may happen. Barn space will go quickly!