My husband had promised he would ride with me in my favorite islands. When I mentioned it to my riding friend, Cathy, she said she would get her husband to come also. It wasn't a sunny day but the temperature was perfect. We parked farther away from our usual spot to add some miles. When you ride with Cathy you always add miles. I originally told my husband 25 then it changed to 35. He doesn't ride much and I didn't want to do more than he wanted. So off we went being treated to beautiful vistas right away.
My favorite spot
Fresh and eager to ride
Even in the beginning of the ride I was being careful with the crosswinds. It felt a bit like I could be swept off my bike. So downhills weren't as fast as usual. The water had white caps and didn't look very friendly for small sailboats.
I never felt like we had a true tailwind but the beginning of the ride was certainly the easiest. There weren't as many bikers as most Saturdays in the islands. We also decided to cross the drawbridge and go into North Hero. Cathy thought we should go to the end and come back but I suggested a shorter ride out to investigate a peninsula we could see but one we had not ridden on. It was stunningly gorgeous but we couldn't go all the way to the end. We ended at a local YWCA camp that was hosting a wedding. (I cannot imagine what it was like there when the storms hit. Poor people, I hope they headed inside.)
When we headed back toward South Hero it was pretty difficult going with the wind against us. We finally got to the road that took us to the West Shore Road but then we had to deal with the cross winds. It was wild. I took a picture of one of many flags we saw flapping in the wind.
When we got to West Shore Road it felt a little more protected and less windy. I stopped to take this very Vermont looking shot.
I was looking forward to our ferry ride to New York as I love it when the seas are rough! It did not disappoint. We tucked out bikes into a protected area and stayed there with them. I did some walking around but I didn't want to get soaked as we had a lot of riding left to do. When we rode around the peninsula in New York we actually had a tail wind for awhile and it was glorious. Soon enough we were headed back into the wind but with some great entertainment. There were many many para sailing and sailboarders out. We stopped several times to watch them. In one spot there were easily 50 cars parked on both sides of the road, the majority from Quebec. I assumed it might be some kind of sail boarding club. They looked thrilled with the conditions.
The lake was full of sail boarders. It looks hard!
Trying to show the effects of the wind.
We got on the ferry to go back to Vermont and the way back was even more of a rocking and rolling ride. The skipper had us tuck our bikes out in the open next to cars rather than on the covered side. We hooked them over the railing and went up top. Two guys standing in the front of the ferry got drenched within seconds. I have to say the ferry rides were one of my favorite parts of the day. We did watch a large sailboat that looked like it was in trouble but it righted itself and continued on. I was delighted with the ferry but would not have wanted to have been on a small boat.
The water comes up over the deck.
A great day with my husband!
The bikes are hooked and safe
When we got off the ferry and were going across the island it was very pleasurable OR not as much wind. We then had a trek straight into the wind back to the car. We had found out at the ferry that the winds were 25 - 30 mph with stronger gusts and expected to be at 40 mph soon. It truly wasn't too bad until we reached the causeway to cross the lake back to our car. All of us had separate thoughts that we might have to get off and walk the wind was so strong. I unclipped for a ways as I thought if I was going down I didn't want to be clipped in. When I did get back to my car I had 45.8 miles done. Ordinarily I would spin around the parking lot to get that to 46 but I was done. Again - we all did the same thing - no finishing off those miles! So overall it was a very fun ride in spite of or even because of the wind. It was a great day to be out enjoying the elements and taking what Mother Nature was throwing at us and coming out ahead. I did think as we were talking at our cars that we would not have set out in these winds had they been that bad at the beginning but none of us quit once we were in it.
Later that day there were tornado warnings in the Islands - just like in many parts of the East.