Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Ponds to Ponder

Rolling along Dutch Gap Road in Chesterville
We were fortunate to have the rains lift in time for the ride from Mount Vernon on June 10. The rains had left us with an abundance of roadside wildflowers under crystal clear skies. The break in the weather left me rather ambitious, and I went out and arrowed the route. I hadn't arrowed the route in some years, and I had a few old cans of white paint leftover from another ride years ago. Turned out the paint was still good, as a result the route is now marked for anyone to revisit anytime this year (the paint usually does not survive the winter).

Heading toward Farmington Falls
Arrow Color & Shape

Blue Skies in Chesterville

Setting out on Rt. 41 South from the Mount Vernon Post Office, we turned off on Sandy River Road at "The Chimney" and worked our way up a series of stiff hills, including the infamous "Upchuck Hill" as we crossed into Chesterville and Franklin County. From there the road descended to the Chesterville Esker. Normally a really fast descent, the roads were in such rough shape that one had to descend with caution, and we couldn't realize the top speeds possible.

The Chesterville Esker

The trees lining the Chesterville Esker provided us with a nice, shady, flat run along one of the most scenic natural areas in central Maine. In places the Ridge Road drops off dramatically on either side, bracketed by small ponds glimpsed through the foliage, beautiful in any time of year.

Stopping at the Village Store in Chesterville

We found ourselves at a familiar stopping point: the Village Store in Chesterville - where we had stopped twice in the course of the Livermore ride two weeks earlier. Since the store had been closed for a few years, and it is one of the few stores in the area, it's good to see it open again. If we keep stopping there like we have, it may stay that way.

A Remarkably Flat Stretch
After a few hills on the return route up Tower Road, during which we twice hit 50 mph on two smooth descents, we finished the ride back in Mount Vernon in time to have lunch at the Old Post Office Cafe in town, marking the end of another great KVBC ride. 

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