Monday, September 22, 2008

Sunday Morning Ride with Mike in NJ

Sunday Morning Ride with Mike

So after taking Catherine to Soccer practice on Saturday, the family headed down to NJ so my wife and Catherine could attend a baby shower. We spent Saturday night at our friend's house.

Mike, who we were staying with, is also a cyclist. In fact his job is to design bike routes, Safe Routes to School, and other mixed transportation type stuff. So he planned a nice 25 mile ride for us for Sunday Morning.

The ride took us south along one ridge, east across a valley, north along the far side of a parallel ridge, back west across the valley, and south again.

Mike ready to head out.

South Mountain Reservation

We headed due south to the South Mountain Reservation, where they close the road on Sunday mornings for runners and cyclists to use.

From the Wikipedia article on South Mountain Reservation

The roadway on Crest Drive has been closed to vehicular traffic at the old deer paddock so that you may enjoy a leisurely walk down to Washington Rock. This is the Park System's bona fide Revolutionary War historic site, dating back to the late 1700's when Beacon Signal Station 9 was located here—one of 23 beacons built by General Washington to observe British troop movements quartered on Staten Island and New York City.

It was from this outlook that, on June 23, 1780, Essex County and Newark Militia were first warned that the British had launched an attack westward toward "the Gap," (Hobart Gap), a natural pathway to Washington's troops encamped at Morris Town. In a pincer movement designed to gain access to the Gap, Hessian troops fought bitterly along Vaux Hall Road, with the British advanced along Galloping Hill Road, until they were repelled, the Hessians at the base of the mountain and the British in Millburn—called Millville in those days. Washington Rock served again as a lookout for the Army when reactivated during the War of 1812.

Riding through Cedar Grove, NJ.

Riding through a somewhat recently abandoned Essex County Hospital Center (Mental Institution). Apparently some of the building still contain patient records.