Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Hawk's Nest 300K -- Pre Ride Notes (updated)

*** Update 1

I found a way to allow the kinder-gentler return route to Easton that avoids some of those nasty climbs on Foul Rift Rd and finishes with the nice descent on Marble Hill. In exchange there is a slightly different approach to the Old Mine Rd climb in Flatbrookville. We leave NPS615 using Pompey  at mile 139. This leads over to a segment of Old Mine by the river that we rarely ride. It's a nice road, although a little longer than the usual way -- which is what allowed the elimination of the nasty Foul Rift section. 

Latest cue sheet is now Version 4, with RWGPS last updated  2021-04-23 10:19:43 EDT

 *** Original Post

Hawk's Nest 300K PreRide 18 April 2021 by Chris Nadovich

The course has been updated to reflect route changes decided by this pre ride. The latest cue sheet is  Version 3, RWGPS Route last modified 2021-04-19 16:07:49 EDT. Full info and online registration available at the event web site.

Course notes:

Mile 2.1 -- Two Rivers Trailway. Watch for bollards and gates! Bridges can be slippery when wet.

Mile 8 -- Returning to the rail trail, it may be difficult to spot the entrance at night. As the cue says, it's just past the electrical substation, which is lit up. The paved parking lot at the trail entrance is not lit. There are several trail like paths here.  The real trail is the middle one: a paved path that doesn't have a private drive or do not enter sign.

Mile 21.3 -- Murder Cows!

An unusual traffic scene

Mile 29.2 -- National Park Drive. Here there is a crumbling bit of roadway across a creek. This is why the road is closed. I walked it because I was a little terrified by the look of the subsidence. That and I wanted a picture.

Crumbling roadway on National Park Drive.

Mile 29.2 -- National Park Drive. Only about half the descent is gravel. The second half is paved, so you and your guardian angel might consider going a little faster on the solid ground. Or not. There are often oblivious pedestrians wandering around the fast, paved decent. Be aware the descent ends in a T-stop with PA611.  

Mile 44.7 -- The Winona Falls Turkey Hill Controle is almost the last real convenience store you'll see for the next 50 miles. There is a General Store at Pickerel Lake about 15 miles from here, but otherwise nothing. I mean there's pretty much nothing for the next 50 miles other than that one General Store where you can buy Gatorade and shotgun shells.  Plan accordingly

Mile 73.4 -- The 402 Cafe was not open. I hope you stocked up at  the Winona Falls Turkey Hill.

Mile 113.0 -- The routing through Port Jervis / Matamoras is the new Sleepy Hollow Road route along the river that passes Riverside Creamery (mi 115.2) just before crossing the bridge into Matamoras, PA out-n-back to the Turkey Hill control. Old time PA riders should turn off autopilot for this. The route is better than the old tour de US-6.

Mile 116.2 -- Matamoras Turkey Hill. This is the last convenience store you will see for 50 miles. Plan accordingly. 

Mile 117.2 -- Railroad Ave is a narrow path, initially paved, immediately next to the RR tracks. When it reaches the park it becomes unpaved. The gravel is better than National Park Drive. You pass a BMX "Pump Track" at around mi 117.7 (why not take a lap?). After the Pump Track the roadbed of Railroad Ave gets even dicier and skirts close to the RR tracks. Keep a lookout for the yellow gate posts on the right indicating the exit from the trail and back to civilization over the brand new bridge on US-6.  If you miss the yellow gate exit, you'll end up crossing a RR trestle, which would be bad. 

Yellow Gate on right exiting from Railroad Ave

Mile 144.1 -- Old Mine Rd. Freshly paved!  Still a tough climb. Stay away from those deep, v-shaped drains. If your wheel hits those, you are going down. 

Mile 146.3 -- This is the beginning of the big climb up Millbrook Rd, which is your reward for just finishing the big climb up Old Mine Rd.  If you've not climbed Millbrook from this side, it's worse than you've heard. If you have climbed it, it's worse than you remember. Fortunately it's smoothly paved and followed by almost 6 miles of descent.

Mile 153.9 -- Blairstown, NJ.   Dale's Market is open till 8PM. After that, only the Blairstown Inn is open. I hope you stocked up at the Matamoras Turkey Hill.

Mile 155.7 -- Heller Hill Rd. You thought the climbing was done when you summited Millbrook?

Mile 166.5 -- Passing a 24 hour Quik Check convenience store. 

Mile 170.6 -- Foul Rift and River Rd, the full experience, all the way into Easton along the river. No, we don't switch back to 519 this time. Sorry. You need to do those little, annoying climbs. 

Mile 184 -- Riding Northampton St through the center of Easton isn't that bad, even considering the two moderate hills it crosses. The section between 3rd and 4th is closed in this direction for restaurant seating, but you can easily weave your way through the barriers or take the sidewalk. I recommend not riding backwards through the one-way car lane -- I've seen this attempted (by cars!) and it can be real trouble. Beyond 4th St take the main lane with confidence. If there's any traffic, it will be calmed by the plethora of traffic lights. The one thing to remember is to stay away from the parked cars. People like to sit in those cars, the ones with the opaque windows and the lights off, to do the stuff they do, and then these people open their car door suddenly without looking. The street is pretty wide. If you firmly take the lane, you should be able to keep away from those scary car doors without causing the minimal traffic too much concern.  

1 comment: