As a new cyclist, I’m still getting used to exploring the many roads of my city. New York City (including surrounding boroughs) is pretty big, and there are many different ways you can get lost on the road while you pedal. Though I have done all boroughs in New York to some extent, I wanted to explore strange territory.
Last weekend, I got on my bike and decided to ride to New Jersey. No, I’m not going to bike down to the Jersey Shore or to Cape May. I’m just going to ride past the Washington Bridge and go North from there. I didn’t have much time as I had to attend my son’s basketball game at 10:30am, so I was limited by how far I can go.
I got on my bike at 6:42 A.M. and made my way West from Queens. It was a chilly morning and as I looked at my Apple Watch, the weather complication read 39˚. The sun was just starting to rise and though my hands and face were a bit cold, pedaling provided some warmth and a bit of confidence. I’ll take it!
I made my way past the Queensboro bridge and headed West. Once I found my way to the West Side, I took the bike lane north all the way to the GWB. Surprisingly, the George Washington bridge is pretty flat and does not have the usual elevation as most NYC bridges do. This is because you ride the hills way before you actually get to the bridge.
Once on the bridge, I realized how windy it had become and Siri told me the wind was pushing at 20 MPH. Because my cold hands and face weren’t enough, I was met with another challenge. I kept pushing and making my way towards Henry Hudson drive. Getting there after the bridge was great since it was mostly downhill.
The Henry Hudson drive was lovely. Smooth road with the Hudson to my right and trees to my left. I pushed hard on my pedals here and enjoyed the ride all the way to the Englewood Boat Basin. I looked at my watch and realized I had to make my way back since I had somewhere to be. I refueled, took a 15 minute break and made my way back.
The ride back was harder since the nice downhill I enjoyed heading towards Henry Hudson Drive was now an uphill, and the wind, which picked up speed, was against me now and made my ascend that much more difficult. Once I made it past then, I pushed hard on the GWB and all the way back to Queens. I made it home 5 minutes before having to leave to my son’s game.
I enjoyed this ride (minus the wind), but I want to go further north next time. For now, I’ll take the 40 miles and prepare for 9W when the right time comes.