Friday, August 14, 2009

Day One Hundred Sixty-three, 090810 - Baldwinsville, NY

Day One Hundred Sixty-three, Date Monday, August 10, 2009
Time in Saddle: 6:05
Distance for the Day: 56.45 miles From Oriskany, NY To Baldwinsville, NY
Accumulated Trip Distance: 7801.64 miles
Altitudes: Starting/Ending 689’/522’, Highest: 693’ Accumulated: 909’
Speeds: Avg: 9.2 mph, Max: 27.4 mph
Weather: 67° occasional light rain becoming thunderstorm by evening
Expenditures: $13

Woke up at 5:10am, got up at 5:30am, and broke down camp by 6:15am before it started lightly raining. I noticed a slug on my tent, so I spent a little extra time making sure to flick the few others I found off my tent and ground tarp. I also made sure to knock my shoes to make sure no critters were inside them, before putting my feet in. At 6:25am I was almost ready to roll, but did so anyway, just to escape the plentiful and aggressive mosquitoes. They were so bad, that I got out of there, stopped to put on my rear pack waterproof cover, went a little further, stopped to put on my waterproof footbags, went a little further, etc.; I couldn’t stop for more than a few moments before they’d home in and begin attacking (ugh!) I finally got underway for several miles before stopping at a Denny’s with wi-fi from 8:30-9:45am to do breakfast ($12), to recharge the notebook, handle email, and check the weather (which was predicting chances of showers). Another pretty non-descript travel day, traveling from one small town to the next. I took a 30 minute lunch break to eat the other half of my Subway sandwich and read my book at a nice park area facing Lake Oneida, and met Mark and his little daughter Anna. He was very interested in my trike, and we chatted about it, my trip, and the local area. He lived nearby, and was a kite and sail board rider. I took their picture and gave them my blog site, then finished up lunch, and continued on. I did get rained on lightly a couple of times but not too bad; saw a lot of farms and lots of cornfields – all very pretty. I stopped in at Clay to buy a soda ($1) and took pictures of Erie Canal and clouds with stoplights at 6:26pm. This evening’s stealth camp was unusual; I rolled into Baldwinsville and found a church, but it was pretty exposed. I talked to a guy there who was attending a meeting, and he suggested going to the small police station across the street to see if they knew of a suitable site, so I did. I went to the office I spoke with the officer, there, and he suggested a park by the Erie Canal, right near Lock 24. Fantastic! I was doubly happy, because the weather was starting to look scary, with the big clouds, thunder, and little raindrops starting to fall. I went to the park, and just as it started to rain, I rolled up onto a small wooden porch with a convenient ramp at the small visitor center building (N43 9.351’ W76 20.110’), moments before the sky let loose: wind, lightning, thunder, torrential rain, and I was high and mostly dry; I *really* missed the bullet on that one. It was still somewhat early, only around 7pm, and still a bit too light to set up my tent. (I wanted to set it up on that porch, and thought it best to do so as stealthily as possible, to avoid reports from alarmed citizens.) So, I deployed anti-mosquito measures (there were a lot of them) and read my book until it got too dark to read, and then just sat there for about another 45 minutes, waiting for it to get even darker, killing dozens of mosquitoes – such a satisfying activity! By now, the storm had passed over, but not without sending down a few lighting bolts with almost no delay before the crack and boom of thunder. I waited until it was fully dark – pedestrian traffic disappeared – and though the local park lights came on, I set up my tent on the porch, and hoped nobody would mind. Apparently, nobody did, and I had a very nice, quiet sleep, right there on the Erie Canal.

No comments: