Word of the day: Cormorant
from Old French cormaran, from medieval Latin corvus marinus ‘sea raven’
Definition: a large diving bird with a long neck, long hooked bill, short legs, and mainly dark plumage. It typically breeds on coastal cliffs and is noted for its voracious appetite.
Before leaving for our first ride of the season, we made sure that everyone had a water bottle, a bag to put their belongings in, and a helmet. Every bike’s tires were double checked and we were ready to roll.
East River Ride
Today was our first ride of the season! We started out at the Beacon School and walked our bikes down 96th St. to the East River Esplanade. We then broke off into two groups. Participants who needed a little more practice walked to Randall’s Island with Jiamei to continue practicing and to become more comfortable riding. Others got our bikes and traveled south towards 59th St. Along the way we looked intently for our mascot, the cormorant. Despite the fog and the drizzling rain, we were able to spot a few along our ride! We continued along the East River towards Carl Shurz Park. On the way, we stopped to find out first geocache. Using the clue “look tree times before giving up!” we found the geocache among a cluster of three trees. Our signature now resides in this geocache. By this time, the rainfall had gotten so heavy that we were all drenched! After running around for a bit, we took shelter at the Cat Bird Playground. A few of us even got on the water slide!
After eating lunch at the Cat Bird Playground, Cappy showed us how to repair a flat tire. This time we found that the tube in the tire had ripped instead of having a hole in it, so we had to replace it with a new tire. Once the rain calmed down, we rode to find another geocache, but unfortunately, we were unable to find it. We continued our journey on the bike path, and after awhile, we arrived at the end of the bike path near the Queensboro Bridge. At the southern end of the bike path awaited our first hill challenge. Many of our riders were able to ride all the way up the steep hill without stopping.
We headed north, and as we did so, the sun started shining and warming us. On our way up, we looked for another geocache, which turned out to be stolen! We rode on the streets and returned to the bike path from the west side of the Carl Shurz Park. We continuously rode for blocks and blocks until we finally ended up at the Triboro Bridge. As we stood there, we learned why Randall’s Island and Ward’s Island had two names, when it looks like one landmass. It turns out that they were two different islands, until people connected the two with landfill. We rode down south again to meet up with Jiamei and our other riders, who had returned to the school to avoid the rain. While we waited for Jiamei’s group on the CVII pier, we played ninja and enjoyed the sunshine. We then rode back to Beacon and worked on our door decorations again.
We are off to a great start! This is going to be a great season! GO CYCLOPEDIACS!
Alberto Rivero, Cappy Collins, Jiamei Huang, Judy Lee
Miles biked: 8.39
Program time (hours): 5 hrs
Ride time (hours): 2.5 hrs
Calories burned*: 373
Estimates based on 100lbs, 5′ 2″ ht, 13 yo, average between male and female.