September, October & November 2001

Please note: HELMETS are now MANDATORY for all rides!

TERRAIN F = Flat with a few easy grades
R = Rolling hills with enough flat places to provide relief
H = Hilly, steep grades with some relief
S = Steep, for strong riders
PACE L = Leisurely with plenty of rest stops. Riding speed 10 to 12 mph
M = Moderate with occasional rest stops. Riding speed 12 to 16 mph
B = Brisk with fewer rest stops. Riding speed greater than 16 mph
Please note: If there is a question of bad weather, call the ride coordinator whose number is listed with the ride description [only the printed copies of the ride schedule contain phone numbers - web ed]. If you get no answer, (s)he is at the designated meeting area!!!

SEPT. 16 (SUN) - COVAC (COnnecticut VAlley Century) - Has a NEW starting place at the JFK Middle School on Bridge Road in the Florence section of Northampton. FHF is offering rides of 100, 75, 50, or 28 miles along the Connecticut River through Mass., Vermont, and New Hampshire over rolling terrain. Registration will cost $5.00 for FHF members and $10.00 for NON members. THERE IS NO PRE-REGISTRATION and NO MASS START! The fee will cover map, juice, bagels, newtons, fruit and sag stops. Registration will start at 7:00 AM and continue until 8:30 AM at the JFK Middle School on Bridge Road in the Florence section of Northampton.
From the South, take I-91 N to Exit 19. Go STRAIGHT at the end of the off ramp onto Damon Road. Continue STRAIGHT at the next set of lights onto Bridge Rd. JFK Middle School is on the right - 3.2 miles from the end of the I-91 off ramp.
COORDINATORS: Pat & Mike Vinskey
Picture perfect weather for this great ride. Sunny all day with a little fog in the early morning. Around 40° at the start of the ride, around 75° at the finish. We received quite a number of positive remarks about the ride and how well it was organized. A ballpark estimate shows about 150 people participated in this years ride. A few people chose the 25-mile option, about a dozen did the 50-miler, one or two did 75, and the rest went the full distance. The FHF would like to thank all the riders who came to join us today and we hope to see you all next year.

We would also like to give a special thanks to those riders who gave us a little extra cash at the registration table. A portion of the proceeds of this ride will be donated to the American Red Cross in NYC.

SEPT. 22 OR 23 (SAT or SUN) GRANITE STATE WHEELMEN'S SEACOAST TRI-STATE CENTURY - an invitational 100, 75, 62, 50, or 25 mile ride along the Mass., NH., and Maine Coastlines on relatively flat terrain. Pre-register and pay only $15.00 and get a T-Shirt. Sign-in starts at 7:00 AM at Hampton Beach State Park, Rt. 1A, Hampton Beach, NH. The registration fee will cover parking at the State Park, route maps, sag wagon coverage, rest room facilities, & trip time log, and a $1.00 donation to the LAB's Bicycling for Bicyclists education fund. Total cost per person for one day or BOTH is $15.00, pre-paid, non-refundable. The event will be held rain or shine -- no rain dates! Contact GraniteStateWheelmen.org for pre-registration information.
Another great weekend for a century ride. Our club decided to do the ride on Saturday despite what the weathermen were telling us (they couldn't decide when the rain would start or stop). The rain started early Saturday morning and stopped around 6:30 AM, so the roads were still damp by 7:30, but not enough to cause a problem. I never got an exact count, but I think we had around 25 riders, including two tandems.

The temperature was hovering around 41° for the start of the ride. By the time we got to the first sag stop in Maine, the roads were dry. Sun was peeking out more and more and the temperature eventually got up to the mid-70's. Windbreakers, arm and leg warmers gave way to shorts and short sleeve shirts. After making the loop up around Nubble Light and back down, we decided to skip the sag stop and continue on to The Ice House in New Hampshire. They have great onion rings, but watch out for the acorns! The picnic tables are situated under some large oak trees. A little bit of a breeze and the acorns started dropping. You could hear and see them bouncing off the cars in the parking lot.

The group thinned out a bit after lunch as we made our way back to Hampton Beach. Some went straight back down 1A and back to the motel (70+ miles), others followed the inland route then went back (80+ miles), and others did the inland route and the southern loop into Massachusetts for the full century. Iron Man Bill Martin did a few extra miles to end up with 110! Pretty good considering he got up at 3:30 AM in western Mass. and drove to Hampton Beach to start with the rest of us. For dinner, we went to the Sea Ketch where most of us had eaten (and used our $15 coupons) the night before.

Sunday is traditionally the more casual day and we started with a group buffet breakfast at the "Ashworth by the Sea". There was no real group ride today, but I think most people headed north up 1A for a bit and then returned, packed and headed home. Karen and I went a little further north than most. We went as far as the bridge into Maine, then turned back and had lunch at The Ice House (I told you, they have great onion rings). We got back to the motel at 2:30 to find a deserted parking lot. Our checkout time wasn't until 3:00 PM, so we had plenty of time to shower and pack and hand in our keys at 3:02 PM (whoops!)

Great weather, great company, great ride. See you again next year.

SEPT. 30 (SUN) - GOING SOUTH; H/M/50 Miles. Enjoy stops at Crystal Lake and Shenipsit Reservoir, with lunch at the Tolland, CT town green. Meet at 9:00 AM at the Hamden Mini Mall on the corner of Allen St. & East Longmeadow Rd. in Hamden, MA. (Can also get there by going south on Main St. in Wilbraham, MA.)
COORDINATOR: Bill Grigaitis
No report, but it looked like real nice weather...

OCT. 6 & 7 (SAT & SUN) - MOUNTAIN BIKE CAMPING TRIP UP To Molly Stark State Park in Wilmington VT. This will be a Bike camping trip that involves riding a fully loaded Mountain Bike 36 miles from Greenfield MA. on a dirt road along the Green River to Molly Stark State Park in Wilmington VT. -elevation gain = 2860 feet. MOUNTAIN BIKE REQUIRED FOR MAXIMUM ENJOYMENT. We'll ride UP to the Campground, pitch camp, eat dinner out, and go food shopping with empty panniers. Other possible activities include an ascent of Mt. Olga on foot, so bring off-bike footwear. We'll DEPART from the Greenfield Community College Parking lot at 10:00 AM on Saturday. Call coordinators ASAP with car's make, model, color & license plate #. GCC requires that we register every car parking for the weekend. The college lot is patrolled and registered cars are checked by Campus Police. NO registration info - car will be towed.
COORDINATORS: Sally Peters & Bob Kowaleski
Brrr... getting cold...

OCT. 14 (SUN) - NORTHFIELD RAMBLE; F-R/L-M/35 miles. Meet at 10:00 AM in the Mt. Sugarloaf Parking lot in South Deerfield on Rt. 116 just across the Connecticut River from Sunderland center. Bring LUNCH - The ride will include a short section of Dirt Road, a bridge that is closed to cars, some spectacular views of the Connecticut & Millers Rivers, and a picnic. Bring food and water for the lunch stop at Northfield Mountain's Picnic Area on the bank of the Connecticut River.
COORDINATORS: Jack & Suzanne Fitz-Gibbon

MOUNTAIN BIKING SEASON IS HERE!. We'll offer organized mountain bike rides for the fall schedule because we have lots of interest and willing coordinators. The terrain covered will be single track, jeep roads, and some off-dirt (read pavement). We will make every effort to avoid muddy areas/trails that are easily eroded. Always bring plenty of water & food (we won't be near stores); wear layers of clothing suitable for the weather. Pack a wind shirt and tube, pump and patch kit. If rain is falling or even threatening we'll probably cancel to avoid riding on muddy trails. Call the listed coordinators with any questions.

OCT. 21 (SUN) - A MOUNTAIN BIKE ADVENTURE DAY IN HAWLEY AND SAVOY. Meet at 10:00 AM at the Ashfield town park on Rt. 116 about a quarter mile from Rt. 112. (The park overlooks Ashfield Lake.) We'll drive to Hawley and then ride towards Savoy on mainly dirt roads with optional single track. Bring snacks, water, lunch, and more snacks.
COORDINATORS: Sally Peters & Bob Kowaleski
Beautiful, sunny day in the 70's!

OCT. 28 (Sun) - NORTHFIELD MOUNTAIN MOUNTAIN BIKE RIDE; ~13 miles. Meet at 10:00 AM at the Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center parking lot located on Rt. 63 in Northfield. You'll need to sign in and get a trail pass, but there are no fees for parking or for trail usage. Remember to bring food and beverage. Call Suzanne if you have any questions.
COORDINATOR: Suzanne Fitz-Gibbon
Sunny day but nice and cool, perfect weather for mountain biking

NOV 4 (Sun) - SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE MOUNTAIN BIKE RIDE - 16 to 18 miles. This ride will cover a variety of terrain (dirt road, double track, single track & off-dirt) and include a stop at a monk's cave. Meet in the parking lot at Wendell State Forest at 11:00 AM. Bring lunch and water. From the South take I91 to exit 24. Follow Rt. 116 to Rt 47 in Sunderland, turn Left and follow Rt. 47 to Rt. 63. Go 4.1 miles on Rt. 63 and turn Right onto Highland St. Take a Right at the T and go UP for 1.8 miles to Wendell State Forest .
COORDINATORS: Bob Kowaleski & Sally Peters
Another beautiful day, sunny in the 50's.

NOV 11 (SUN) MB 205 - MT. BIKING IN ROBINSON STATE PARK - Meet at Agawam High School in Feeding Hills at 11:00 AM for a ride in nearby Robinson State Park which borders the Westfield River. Bring snacks, lunch & water. We'll spend the day riding the abundant single track trails in the park.
COORDINATORS: Bob Kowaleski & Sally Peters

Read this - read this - read this - read this

NOV. 17 (SAT) ANNUAL MEETING AND POTLUCK with a MOUNTAIN BIKE RIDE FIRST. The ride will be mostly on dirt roads with significant elevation gain, and some (optional) single track. Meet at Al & Marion's house at NOON for the ride.
There will be a HIKING option - Meet for hike at NOON also. Otherwise:
      Happy Hour 5:00 PM or when bikers & hikers return
      Dinner at 6:00 PM
      Meeting at 7:00 PM
Meeting agenda will include election of a new slate of officers. Call Al or Marion and tell them what you are bringing to the potluck.
COORDINATORS: Al Shane & Marion Gorham
Another nice day for riding (and a great potluck), but I heard that two people broke their chains on today's ride.

NOV 18 (SUN) - MOUNTAIN BIKING IN HUNTINGTON - DAR ride has been canceled. Will lead a Mt. ride around the Littleville Lake/reservoir in Huntington instead. Ride is 12-13 miles, mostly fire roads or ATV trails with some rocky sections and limited singletrack. Very nice ride. Directions: Take Rt. 66 west from Northampton to Rt 112. Turn left on Rt 112 towards Huntington. Approx 3-4 miles down you will see a sign and road on the left for Littleville Lake. Go past Gateway regional school and take next left onto Goss Hill road and up hill to lake. There are signs. The parking area is closed, but there is space for cars by the gate. Ride leaves at 10:00 AM.
COORDINATOR: Jack Fitz-Gibbon

No more official club rides. See you at the banquet on Feb. 10 in Williamsburg or at our first meeting of the new year on March 9th at Jack and Suzanne's house.