September 2005
Bicycling & more in Central Massachusetts & beyond


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As always, call the leader if the weather conditions are questionable, or if you have other questions. Ride Categories explanation.

Sunday, September 11, is the deadline for the October newsletter.

If you can lead a bike ride, hike or other activity in October, submit the details by midnight Sept. 11 to Lynne Tolman, , 508-831-0301.

Autumn means hunting season, and the presence of hunters in the woods means hikers and mountain bikers need to use extra caution. Most hunting seasons in Massachusetts run between mid-October and mid-December. While hunting accidents are rare (statistics show that hunting is safer than many sports, including cycling), cyclists can enhance their safety by wearing, a hunter's orange vest. These are available in the sporting goods departments of most department stores. Avoid white or brown clothing (you don't want to look like a deer). Hunting is not allowed on Sundays in Massachusetts.

Recurring Rides

Wednesday Outdoor Workouts, Easy Monday Evening Rides, Easy C Rider

Saturday, September 3
Activity: Road ride, 25 miles, C
Location: Old Stone Church, Routes 12 & 140, West Boylston
Time: 8:30 a.m.
Leader: John Pare, , 508-835-4357

We'll ride to the Visitors Center at Mount Wachusett, with an optional ride to the summit.

Sunday, September 4
Activity: Road ride, C, 31 miles
Time: 9:00 a.m.
Location: Charles J. Buffone Skating Rink, 484 Lake Ave., Worcester
Leader: Ed Weber, , 508-930-2345 or 508-839-4585

Gentle to rolling terrain in Grafton, Upton and Westboro. The cue sheet is here:

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Sunday, September 11
Activity: Mountain biking, easy, 1-2 hours
Location: Rutland State Park, Route 122A, Rutland
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Leader: Bill Dobson, , 508-885-2004

An easy introduction to off-road cycling on a 10- to 12-mile loop using a combination of gravel roads, fire roads, rail trails, and easy single track in Rutland State Park and the Barre Falls Dam area. Amount of single track will depend upon trail conditions. Fat tires required; suspension recommended but not mandatory. A shortcut is available (8.5 miles) if you find yourself in too deep. Expect "hike-a-bike" in a few spots. For those who didn't get enough thrills, a short (0.9-mile) single track loop from the parking area after the main ride is available to test your bike handling skills. Meet at the Rutland State Park parking area just before the parking lot for the swimming beach. The park entrance is on Route 122A about half a mile from Route 122. Park anyplace on the right when you see the swimming pond on your left. Rain cancels the ride.

Saturday, September 17
Activity: Road ride, C+/B, 46 miles
Time: 9:00 a.m.
Location: Routes 70 & 140, Boylston
Leaders: Howie Fain, , 508-754-9860

The "Surround-towns" ride through the nine towns circling Worcester has lots of lakes and reservoirs but never ventures more than 3 miles from the city line.

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Saturday, September 24
Activity: Mountain bike ride, intermediate
Location: Meet at playground parking lot, Route 140 & Leominster Road, East
Princeton, to bike in Leominster State Forest
Time: 9:00 a.m.
Leader: Bill Dobson, , 508-885-2004. RSVP required.

This is Bill's favorite mtb route in Leominster State Forest. All the serious climbing is done in the first half on fire roads, and the rest of the trail is singletrack and "flat" (and if you believe that ...) or downhill, with one long technical downhill romp that will leave your thighs burning worse than if you had ridden up! Meet at the playground parking area in East Princeton on Route 140 at Leominster Road (just south on 140 from the center of East Princeton). We may have to carpool to the start, as parking at the entrance gate is limited. We will start at the rarely used East Princeton entrance to the state forest. This ride is "intermediate" difficulty. Be comfortable with roots, rock gardens, and mud holes. Some rock walls, bomb holes, and log piles along the way will keep it interesting. We'll stop and teach "technique" at interesting points if anybody wants it. The route skirts the Leominster Sportsmen's Club, and ducking small arms fire is all part of the fun. You must contact the leader if you plan to go. Rain or unusually wet trail conditions will cancel the ride.

Sunday, September 25
Activity: Road ride, 47 miles, C+
Location: Paxton Center School, Route 31, Paxton
Time: 9:00 a.m.
Leader: Pete Banach, , 508-887-2656

Through the Brookfields and New Braintree, up to South Barre and back on nice back roads. This is the same ride we did Aug. 7.

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Last Modified on: August 21, 2005