King's Tour of the Quabbin

Discussion in 'rec.bicycles.rides archive' started by Pete Salomone, Jun 16, 2003.

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  1. Ride Report: King's Tour of the Quabbin

    This invitational was held by the Seven Hills Wheelmen on Saturday, June 7th beginning in Rutland,
    MA. Since the elementary school’s lot appeared to be full, I parked at the middle school down the
    road from Naquag Elementary. Registration was fast just sign your name on a sheet that I presume
    had a waiver at the top and pay $10. When I started the century, cue sheets were all taken.

    Food was available at the start of the ride. Since the weather report for Saturday changed from
    Thunderstorms late in the day to rain around noon, so I was anxious to begin. From the start the
    route went on a long descent, a most pleasant way to warm up.

    The whole ride was rural going through some small towns and villages. On some of the numbered
    states routes there was some traffic, but most of the time there were few cars. From the start the
    route went through Rutland State Park as it wound toward Barre. On the way I met a couple of other
    cyclists going about the same speed, so we formed a short paceline as we covered pretty but hilly
    countryside.

    After one of the longer climbs we reached Barre riding past a bakery in the center of town.
    Resisting the temptation to stop I decided to ride to the first rest stop guessing that I was
    already half way there. The route continued with a longer one out of Barre.

    The route was well marked, so I didn’t have to use the cue sheet. There were about ten miles of
    rolling hills before a long descent into the reservoir district. The rest stop was at the beginning
    of the road that went into the reservoir district. A couple ran the rest stop off their tailgate.
    Although there were no rest rooms, there were plenty of trees in the forest. While I was at the
    rest stop, it started to sprinkle.

    Since the weather forecast was rain for the rest of the day, I decided to do the metric century
    instead of the century. Many other cyclists made the same decision including a group of ten from a
    health club in Killingly, CT, whom I rode almost all the way back with. As it was not sprinkling
    hard, the road remained dry for a while. On a road that said “closed, bridge out” we crossed a
    river going into Gilbertville on a covered bridge. Even an hour after it first started sprinkling,
    the sides of the road under trees were dry. After we went through some areas where it really
    rained, we got quite wet from wheel spray. A rider got a flat going up a hill, clearly the reason
    he was going slowly. A group of us changed the tube twice before we were successful.

    The route was pretty, but the sprinkles kept us from enjoying it too much. Since temperatures were
    close to 70, we didn’t get cold, just soaked through by the time we finished. There were no rest
    stops on the rest of the route, so we made pretty good time back to the school.

    EVALUATION

    Brochure – I didn’t have one, but info on the website was good.

    Routes – good. Excellent terrain if you like hills and lakes. Some state routes had some traffic,
    rural roads were rural.

    Intersections - well marked.

    Cue sheet – none left and that is unacceptable. Also I wished I had a map, so I could have taken a
    more direct route back from the rest stop in the rain.

    Rest stops – fair; typical food, but only one rest stop on the metric route.

    Sags – none; you must rely on your companions for support.

    Value – low price, low service. I’m reluctant to pay for an invitational that does not
    provide support.

    Conclusion – I’d like to do the century route around Quabbin. Since there is no support, I may do it
    with some friends.
     
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