Monday, June 20, 2022

Home from Maine 2022 Day 14 - Pomeroy to Delta, PA

 It was a short day today, but very, very hilly. We are at the Peach Bottom Inn, which is an old, no-frills motel attached to a really nice restaurant.

There is nowhere else to stay for 30 miles in any direction, and from here it is 50 miles to home. This place is pretty much a required stop, and fortunately it is awesome.

The big part of the challenge for today is we crossed the Susquehanna River.

That means a ginormous climb out of the river valley. And then you have to cross a creek that brings you right back down to the level of the river and you get to climb out again.

We stopped to take this cool photo in the middle of the bridge because Max wrecked and dropped his bike. I braked for an expansion joint, and then hard for a couple potholes and Max ran into me. He's fine, just some road rash, but he was a bit shaken up and we took a break for awhile. This happens every bike tour. It's like despair. His bike is OK also.

 It's a bunch of ups and downs until you get to the river too. If only there were a rail trail from a railroad right of way that was purposely designed to have low grades.

On top of that bridge is the "Enola Low Grade Trail". Unfortunately, the trail surface is unimproved railroad ballast. It's not rideable on road bikes. So instead, it was endless ups and downs on the roads parallel to the perfectly level rail trail. 

The scenery here is fantastic, though. It's Amish country. There are lots of farms and vegetable gardens that are nicer than mine will ever be.

And baby calves by the side of the road in their little sheds. Awwww. They are so cute!

There were lots of Amish people out baling hay.

This is a really cool scene, and also totally irrational. What we have here is a team of draft horses pulling a hay baler. The hay baler has a gasoline motor running it. If you are allowed to have an engine running the baler, why not just get a tractor? This makes no sense. The team of draft horses is pretty cool though. Maybe it's all about having an excuse to have a team of draft horses.

Then there was another Amish highlight for today. In Maryland, there are lots of places that sell "Amish" mini-barns and chicken coops. "Amish" creates this vision of the hard-working, Godly Amish farmer out in the wood shop next to his barn, assembling chicken coops using hand tools and traditional joinery techniques. I bought such a chicken coop, which has no signs of traditional joinery or the use of hand tools. 

Guess what we rode by today!

The Amish chicken coop factory! That dark green coop to the right of the tree is identical to mine. I feel so validated on my cynicism regarding Amish chicken coops.

Here is the Strava track.

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