Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - 9:30 am
Silver Spokes Email Ride Ride. 25.5miles @ 11.7 mph

Bob Gilliland Jr (L), Lori Brulo Al Brulo Mike Loomis

When you help Santa, this is a busy time of the year; sorry for the EXTREMELY long delay in posting this ride report. Finally catching up on a much to long “to do” list.

On Thanksgiving Eve, four riders departed at 9:30am from the Paxtang trail head of the Capital Area Greenbelt in mid-30 temperatures for a planned C pace, 26-mile ride, that would find us pedaling on both shores of the Susquehanna. A counter clockwise approach to the CAG was the inspiration for this ride, with a few diversions (planned) here and there to add a little interest and explore some new options for area rides.

The first departure from the CAG happened near the Harrisburg East Cemetery where we remained on Edgemont Rd, turning left on Locust Lane and ultimately returning back to the CAG via the “north extension”. The next parting happened at Wilwood Lake where we went past the Olewine Nature Center and took a “right” to travel under Rt 322 and arrived at Olympus Heights Park. A quick climb up Crooked Hill Rd and another on Fargreen Rd had the blood pumping. Al and I had the pleasure of seeing a deer cross on Fargreen just before the intersection of Mitchell. A return via Linglestown had us back on the CAG at North 6th St.

Another brief departure from the CAG had the “quad” turning right on Graham St, left on North 3rd and ultimately on Parkside Lane as we took in the sights of Italian Lake and talked about the upcoming “Christmas at Italian Lake” that is happening this weekend. Mike, I now understand about bikers dressing up for this Christmas event!

A right turn off the CAG to cross the Harvey Taylor Bridge had us wondering if the border guards would be in place since they weren’t present for the Perry County East Shore Flex ride that took place the day before. Guessing they had the entire week off as not once did all four East shore residents need to show papers as we gained elevation via Popular Church Rd on a planned stop at the new Sheetz. A little more elevation gain occurred on Erford, North Twelfth and Indiana Ave before taking a break at Negley Park to take in the brisk air and admire City Island and the city of Harrisburg.

Crossing back to our native land via the Market Street bridge, a right turn welcomed us back onto the CAG. A pleasant, and very welcomed sight, was concrete work taking place just south of the railroad bridge on the unimproved section. Not knowing the status of the CAG south of the PennDOT building, Sycamore and Cameron was our choice to get to the Cameron Parkway trail head. An unplanned diversion back onto the CAG happened between Magnolia and Elliot St when Al identified the fresh asphalt on the CAG and the “grade” improvement and suggest we have a go at it. This also allowed us to experience the improved crosswalk from the CAG perspective at Cameron St. NICE! Really enjoyed another improved crosswalk at 28th St/Rt 441 and the new pavement climbing out from the Five Senses Garden to Paxton St (and yet another improved intersection!).

We remained on pavement into Paxtang via Parkview Lane and a left on City Park Dr. Currently, the CAG is being worked on around Rutherford House. From what I can see when driving by, this should be a very nice upgrade once completed; just like all the other improvements! Remaining on Paxtang Avenue, a left turn on Rutherford St had us enter Paxtang Commons Park where we did a left turn back onto the CAG/Paxtang trail head.

This mostly urban ride ended up with 25.5 miles in and clocked an average pace of 10.7 (urban riding kept the pace down). Elevation climb totaled 1,342’. Sincere thanks to my 3 fellow club riders for a very enjoyable peddle around the capital city.