A free Thursday on the Cape. A breezy 70 degree day. A perfect day to go see the Outer Cape!
Cape riding is different. The Cape is (mostly) flat. The Cape is long and narrow -- going to someplace means a virtually identical ride back. But -- the Cape offers plenty of bike trails and "car light" roads as long as you know where to go.
Today's ride was an ambitious 88 miles. The ride centered on the Cape Cod Rail Trail, 30 miles of bike only traffic running from Dennis to Wellfleet, with a spur from Harwich to Chatham. Having reached the northern terminus, the exploring began -- the backroads of Wellfleet and Truro, including the dreaded "Truro Hills" known and remembered by every PMC rider.
Two remarkable parts of the day. First, the stunning vistas on both the "Ocean" and "Bay" sides of Wellfleet. Second, spending the day with HUNDREDS of other riders. Young adults, families with kids, "old people" -- EVERYWHERE on the bike trail, and elsewhere on the Cape roads. Most were casual riders, but that's EXCELLENT. Bike Nation is alive and well on Cape Cod. I helped two people, a woman towing her young child with a rental bike who didn't know how to shift out of the lowest gear, and an older man who had lost his chain and was struggling to reattach it. I made it a point to say hello to as many people as possible. And I wish I had a counter -- hundreds is no exaggeration.
Three notes on the route map 1) Elmo would have objected to the two mile dirt road cut through on High Toss Road. I don't mind "adventure biking" 2) Route 6 is not for everybody, but there is a very wide shoulder, I felt safe 3) the short stretch on Route 28 in Orleans is also not for everybody, but there are limited alternatives.
I reflected on the Civil War Monument in Orleans -- I'm sure the fallen would be confused why it took 150 years to see the Confederate flag finally disappear (hopefully) for good from Columbia, SC and Walmart, but -- I'm sure they are pleased with the result of the past few weeks.