Sunday, August 23, 2015

Finished in Freeport

It's late in the day but we need to do our blog before we lose any details. We began the day with a good breakfast then headed out on Route 5 north out of Fryeburg. We pedaled to Lovell then took 93 east to the infamous Sweden Hill road. It's infamous to us because we have ridden it several times before - East to West. We knew there was a steep "head wall" going West to East and I was not looking forward to it. As it turns out that "head wall" is the only hill we walked in our entire ride.

Highlight today was reuniting with several good friends. We met Bob and Dave 35 miles into today's ride. Bob rode with us to Freeport and Dave as far as his home in Auburn. Rick D found us at Dave & Kathy's home, a couple friends saw us along the road to Freeport, and a few more in Freeport. We are now at Dave & Kathy's, our stomachs are full (thank you Kathy!), and we are enjoying great conversation. It is good to be home.

We have so much to be thankful for. The prayers of so many were felt along this entire trip as we pedaled along with fires and violent storms occurring in areas not far from us. God was with us when Steve's handlebar broke - keeping us safe and making repairs possible and relatively quick. Our hearts are greatful to the many friends and family that made this trip so successful.

Dave, Steve, Bob
Yes! We've done it
Front tire in the Atlantic

Miles today = 80

Final miles = 4311


Saturday, August 22, 2015

Climbed the Kanc and entered Maine.

The ride over the Kanc was awesome! The views were spectacular and the climb from the west side was not as difficult as we had imagined. The climb up the Kanc west to east was easier than any of the other passes we climbed through Vermont and New Hampshire and the views were definitely the best. Interesting thing is that yesterday we climbed roughly 5000 ft compared to half that in doing the Kanc today.

I was so excited to see the Welcome to Maine sign. Yahoo, there is no place like home! Tomorrow we ride from Fryeburg to Freeport, about 80 miles. We will dip the front tire in the Atlantic and consider our journey complete.

We are spending the night at a wonderful B&B, Admiral Peary Inn. They welcome 2 legged and 4 legged guests! The resident dog, a yellow lab named Mia, provided us with doggie love!

Miles today = 47

Total miles = 4231


Friday, August 21, 2015

Glasses need windshield wipers.

Today was our first ride in the rain and boy did it RAIN! We climbed from Bethel Vermont to Lincoln New Hampshire through 3 mountain passes. We were in the clouds on our last pass and were very thankful for our flashing lights on the front and back of the tandem. Imagine our surprise when we were taking a break in North Haverhill N.H. and 2 very familiar faces popped out of a car to say hello. What a treat to see Chip and Diane Palmer. Tomorrow we ride the " Kank" into Fryeburg Maine joined by some great friends. Our journey is coming to an end!

Miles today = 77

Total miles = 4184

Steve & Marcia with good friend Diane



Thursday, August 20, 2015

Bethel, Vt

Our day began with a ride on the Ticonderoga ferry across the Champlain Valley to Vermont. This ferry was established in 1759 and is one of the oldest ferry crossings in North America. We rode from the ferry to Middlebury where we had breakfast in preparation to climb the Middlebury Gap. This is our first major climb in the Green and White Mountains. It was a tough climb but we did great and reached the top in good order. I had forgotten how mountainous Vermont is but was quickly reminded as we pedaled along rivers and streams with mountains all around us. It is very beautiful and made us feel very small. Our day ended in Bethel which is a very quaint New England town.

Miles today = 63

Total miles = 4107

At the top!


Wednesday, August 19, 2015


After a good breakfast in Long Lake we headed out for Ticonderoga. As it turned out we have driven today's route several times when visiting family in NY. It's a good route for bicycles except for a section of Route 74 that twists and turns without the benefit of a shoulder. We felt very vulnerable but with the benefit of knowing the road and where things would get better.

Most of the Route was very beautiful with views of mountains as we crested each climb and several ponds and marshes as we descended from each of our climbs. Noteworthy was our passage by the head waters of the Hudson River and our first view into Vermont as we crested our last hill climb.

First view into Vermont

Miles today = 63

Total miles = 4044


Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Long Lake

Today we left my sister's home after 3 days of rest. We also left 30 lbs of camping gear plus our BOB trailer behind. We'll be hoteling it for the rest of our trip. Shedding the weight really felt good as we worked our way through the Adirondacks. Our ride was very scenic beginning with the Moose River and continuing with various lakes along our route. We finished our days ride in Long Lake NY at the Sand Point motel.

Riding along the Moose River

It seems that no matter what we do we can be humbled by those we encounter. We met some truly long distance cyclists today. Heidi and Markus Dangl started in Los Angeles and are heading toward NY city. That will complete their 4th continent in their quest to ride around the world. From NY city they will be heading for Africa. If interested, you can find them at . They are from Austria so you may need to brush up on your German. They were really interesting to visit with - we're glad we were given the opportunity.

Miles today = 77

Total miles = 3981



Friday, August 14, 2015

3,900 miles and 39 years!

Today we hit 3,900 miles on our 39th wedding anniversary. We rode from Redfield to Turin and look forward to several days enjoying time with Steve's family. The terrain was hilly and very steep in places as we continue to climb onto the plateau which is just west of the Adirondack Mountains. Alex and Jeanette Tahou drove up to Turin to reconnect with us and Steve's sister Linda. On Tuesday we start the last leg of our journey - New York to Freeport Maine.

One of our struggles was the number of hotels and small stores that were closed. We often were hoping for a meal or a place to spend the night only to find that they were closed. The picture of the hotel is one example of this issue. We're sure you have heard of this world famous hotel.

Miles today = 42

Total miles = 3904



Today is August 14, 2015. On August 14, 1976 I married my beautiful bride Marcia. She is my life mate and best friend. We have cried together through hardships but we have had our share of laughter. We have raised a wonderful son together and have shared in so many other life adventures to numerous to number. Above all God has given us a life together based on on a shared faith in Christ. We have never questioned our love and devotion toward each other. Thank you Marcia for always being there for me and sharing with me in this grand adventure called life. I do truly love you and always will.


Thursday, August 13, 2015


We left our good friends home in East Bay this morning and continued northeast along the coast of Lake Ontario. We followed mostly county roads past several beautiful orchards. There were several steep ups and downs along the lake requiring our granny gear on the ups. Good training for what's coming - the White and Green mountains of New England.

In Polaski, NY we headed due east experiencing our first transition toward the Adirondack Mountains. We climbed until we reached our destination for the night - Redfield. The climbing was not overly serious however the climb was obvious as we gained about 750 ft in elevation in the 15 miles from Polaski to Redfield. The scenery continued to be very pleasant today and the weather was made for cycling. The temperature was in the mid 70s, very low humidity, blue sky with a few puffy white clouds, and a tail wind. It was great.

We passed several farms with horses that appeared very curious about us as we pedaled past. We also passed by an Amish farm with a recently cut hay field. We were both curious and impressed by the way they hand stacked their hay.

Amish Hay field

On a couple side notes. We left friends Neil & Jan yesterday afternoon after a short but very pleasant visit. Neil talked us into taking a bag of about 2 dozen chocolate chip cookies. I'm glad he did. They heated up in the afternoon sun and tasted just like they were fresh cooked. They tasted great and all that was left by this morning were a few crumbs.

The second side note concerns where we landed tonight. The name of of the place is Otter Limits. The hotel is basic - no WiFi or AC (just open a window) but the rooms are large and comfortable with refrigerator and microwave. The hotel has a store and good restaurant. The owner is very nice and bicyclist friendly. Doesn't get much better than that.

Miles today = 79

Total miles = 3862


Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Our travels today took us from Fairport to East Bay where we are staying in the home of a good childhood friend. The only problems is that my friend and family are not here. They are on vacation in the Adirondacks. So the house is very empty but we appreciate so much the use of the house.

In route we stopped and visited some other good friends that Steve had from his youth group days - Neil and Jan and some of their family. It seems so good to once again be back in the same area as friends and family. And yes - food was involved with our visit.

The route today took us north along the shore of Lake Onterio. The riding was great. With the addition of Lake Onterio, Lake Superior is the only Great Lake we missed on this adventure.

Marcia and I have been so blessed in doing this ride together.

Miles today = 54

Total miles = 3783


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Erie Canal to Fairport

We left Marcia's brother and family in Buffalo heading north to Lockport. The ride was good in that we were able to incorporate several miles of bike paths into the route. At Lockport we picked up the Erie Canal trail. The Erie Canal is an amazing structure were several streams and even a road passes underneath. At one point we made a wrong turn where the Genesee River intersects the canal. There were several confusing bridges and waterways at that point. So we found ourselves following the river trail north into Rochester city center.

Genesee River & Erie Canal intersection

In its time it was a big boost to shipping from the Great Lakes to NewYork City. The bike path is wonderful. We arrived at our original camping destination at about 2pm and decided to push on. We had dinner in Pittsford (just south of Rochester) and then started looking for a hotel. They were full in the area. We finally found one in Fairport and we rolled into our Budget Inn just as the sun was setting. This has been a very long day.

Miles today = 104

Total miles = 3729


Monday, August 10, 2015

Family blessings.

"Time flies when you are having fun" that adage pertains very well to the last few days. We landed in Tonawanda N.Y. on Friday and have been blessed by the wonderful hospitality of my brother Todd and his familyi. It will be hard to say goodbye and bike off towards the Rochester area in the morning. We were able to see my mom in the nursing home and then my dad for lunch. I have never outgrown my need for my daddy's hugs. I wish Maine was not so far from family.

Dad, Marcia, Todd, Diane, Steve


Saturday, August 8, 2015

New York

We are back in the USA! It was a short days ride to Marcia's brother & family place in Tonawanda. Much of the ride was over bike paths which is always a good thing. Once over the Peace Bridge and through customs we navigated the streets of Buffalo heading toward the River Front trail. The first bridge we needed to cross was closed due to construction. Then the second pedestrian bridge we needed to cross was only open week days. This being a Saturday we were out of luck. All this put us out on the streets of Buffalo more than we would of liked. At one point a van pulled up beside us matching our speed. This typically makes us uncomfortable in a big city especially as the passenger window was rolled down. This guy leans out and asks "where ya coming from?". "Oregon". "Cool man" as the van drove off.

View of Buffalo from Canada
View from the Peace Bridge

Miles today = 42

Total miles = 3625


Friday, August 7, 2015

Long Beach Conservation

We finished today at Long Beach Conservation Area. We had visions of our former USFS campsites with pit toilets and water you had to pump by hand. And no electricity. We were wrong. We are packed in tight with other campers. And there's power and running water. It's just like any of the other RV parks we've been to. We are certainly not complaining. We are thankful to have a spot on this Friday night in tourist land.

The day was pretty uneventful. We worked to put ourselves in a good position to get over the Peace Bridge into the USA tomorrow and get to Marcia's brother's place early in the day. In spite of stiff headwinds all day we are now only about 28 miles from the USA. By the way, everyone here tells us that they hardly ever get an east wind here. Guess what!

An interesting thing happened last night. Our campground was surrounded by early generation wind turbines and we could hear them all night long. That combined with an air mattress that has something resembling a hernia resulted in a less than restful nights sleep. The air mattress reminds me (in places) of sleeping on a beach ball.

Miles today = 77

Miles total = 3583