Sunday, June 4, 2017

2017 Tandem Rides June

June 4, 2017 - Cape Ann Clockwise Loop - ~26 miles

Route Notes:  Have been circumnavigating Cape Ann for many years, usually starting in Gloucester Stage Fort Park.  This time tried alternate start at school at SW corner of the loop.  Worked great, plenty of parking, ball playing fields were in use so wasn't completely deserted. Watched kids doing bike stunts at the skateboard park. Bruce Lederer (Bike Rides for Ordinary People, Cycle Massachusetts) first showed me these great cycling roads, probably about 2002-3.

Start Point:  O'Maley Innovation Middle School, 32 Cherry St, Gloucester

Plant of the Week: Lots of abundant bloom and green this time of year.  We particularly liked the purple sage flowers, which we are also enjoying at home, snipped into a tiny vase from our vegetable garden.  Found a dramatic display, bordering front walkway so viola, it's the plant of the week.  Kousa dogwoods looking good, was runner up - I thought I got a picture of one but it turned out to be viburnum. Also saw laburnum, with yellow hanging flower bunches.

Weather:  Rain expected later in the day, so got a somewhat earlier start, ~11 am. Very sunny, beautiful blue skies with some clouds adding much interest. Later in afternoon, about 2 pm or so, it did start to cloud over.  I had forgotten my riding vest, but no matter, perfect biking temps really, slightly cool.  Wind evident but not impeding progress.

Stops and Sights along the Route:
  • From parking area - example of dramatic New England ledge in distance.
  • Great water views going up towards Lanesville and on to Halibut Point.
  • Rockport - Gelato at Robin's Nest, right on Main St
  • Cape Ann Museum - sculpture court, great sculptures - would like to visit museum sometime
  • Gloucester City Hall - magnificent building, towers visible from great distances land or sea
Stops After the Ride:  Mile Marker Restaurant and Bar at the Cape Ann's Marina Resort, 75 Essex Road - a good find!  Dockside bar with entertainment, or quiter restaurant looking out onto marina (our choice).  Indoor pool a big attraction for kids. Restaurant restrooms are also the changing rooms for the pool, so great facility for changing out of bike clothes and cleaning up after the ride.

Crossing on footbridge over "Lobster Cove" into Anisquam, looking south toward Anisquam River.

Another view from footbridge, for my nautical pals in GIS.

Plant of the week - Sage, purple flowers at peak.

Robin's Nest Gelato - 1 Main St Rockport

Window Boxes in Rockport

Misery Island Twin Lighthouses

Beach near Land's End, Penzance Road

Beach Rose

Gloucester City Hall

Great statue in courtyard of Cape Ann Museum

Another viewpoint

Spirit of the Sea (1915, bronze) - Albert Henry Atkins (1880-1951)

Spirit of the Sea - detail of base.  Scary sea monsters?

Plant of Week Runner Up - Virburnum (thought it was Kousa Dogwood)

Mile Marker Restaurant at Cape Ann's Marina Resort

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