Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Huntsville Reservoir

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

As I mentioned previously, I was sick last week. I was feeling better by the weekend, but naturally I was sick at the worst possible time, just as my workload was really picking up. So I spent a good portion of the weekend trying to catch up. I did find time for a little riding. On Saturday, I rode around Huntsville Reservoir. I have done this ride a couple of times in the past; it’s a nice, quiet route, mostly paved, with a little gravel thrown in as well. The ride was only about 21 miles, but with nearly 2400 feet of climbing, it felt much longer. I took a lot of photos of the bike during this ride, since I had just cleaned it and put on some new handlebar tape.

I started by taking the Back Mountain Trail. There’s still a bridge out, but I managed to cross the creek and push the bike up the other side. It was a little tricky, but doable. There’s some nice scenery on the Back Mountain Trail, and I stopped for a bike photo shoot.


View Huntsville Reservoir 07-19-2009 in a larger map

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The trail climbs the whole way in this direction, but it’s a nice easy grade. But soon I got on Sutton Road where the real climbing began. It’s slow going, but with some lovely views of fields and mountains, there’s no reason to be in a hurry. The road is a bit deceptive. It’s steeper than it looks. It seems like the kind of place a nice spirited climb would work well, but I’ve found it’s best to put the bike in a low gear and just gradually spin up. Maybe part of that is the Trucker. Climbing is not its forte.

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By the time I had gone seven miles, I had climbed nearly the entire way. At this point, the road dropped down rather steeply toward Huntsville Reservoir. I took the road along the eastern side of the lake, which was flat for a few minutes, with some nice views.

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Before long, I had another slog of a climb, and the road turned to gravel and went through some rolling hills and the pavement came back.

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A brief jaunt on PA Route 115 took me to Huntsville-Idetown Road, which I would follow back, more or less along the other side of the lake. I underestimated the climb here.

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Fortunately, my efforts payed off, in the form of three miles that were mostly downhill. This was very refreshing, both as a break for my legs and because the wind had a wonderful cooling effect. Speaking of which, this had been a rather windy ride, but in a pleasant way. The wind wasn’t strong enough to make riding overly difficult, but it did keep me from getting too hot.

Unfortunately, I still had the biggest climb of the ride ahead of me, up the back side of Larksville Mountain. This was a real slog as always, but then then I had an exhilarating descent down Larksville Mountain and an easy roll home.

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All in all, it was a pleasant ride. I sometimes find myself wishing I had a faster, lighter bike better suited to climbing. I wouldn’t want a full-on racing bike, but sometimes the Trucker can feel unwieldy on the climbs.

One Response to “Huntsville Reservoir”

  1. erik Says:

    looks good, i know the feeling about weight on climbs… I think my 40 spoke rear was a bit overkill, but so it goes — I figure since I’m not in it for speed what doesn’t hurt me only makes me stronger.

    Cheers

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