Staten Island, the “forgotten borough,” is geographically much closer to NJ than the rest of NYC. But we didn’t forget! And it’s not too far for our intrepid crew–this trip completes our sweep!
Word of the Day: borough
Old English: burg = town, walled fortress
The boroughs function as fortresses around New York Harbor.
Wow! That was a tough one, but we made it! It was a perfect day for riding! For today’s ride (our penultimate ride of the season) we had Speed Dusters Kayelah, Priscilla, Jeremy, and Aaron but we were also joined by rival Ruff Ryders, Estuardo and Michael. Although there is some fierce competition between our two team, the Speed Dusters were happy to welcome the two boys to the group for the day. Today we had the Speed Ryders (or the Ruff Dusters)!
Cappy and Dan came in this morning before the ride to do a quick tune up on all the bikes. With today’s long ride it was important to be sure all of the tires were completely filled with air. Soon the team started rolling and look, Aaron even brought his own bike! Cappy quickly filled Aaron’s tires and we headed down to the East River for the first leg of our journey.
As we began the ride everyone was clean and crisp but that didn’t last as Aaron had some mud fly up and plop onto his leg (it looked a lot like the black mayonnaise from last week’s ride!) After wiping himself clean, we continued the ride and made it to the dog park in no time. We were making great time! After passing under our old friend the Queensboro Bridge, we had to take a detour down 2nd Ave and around the United Nations but we were soon back on the East River Greenway. As we peered out over the river, oh, look—our mascot the cormorant!
After a quick water break at the East River Park Track, we made the final trek down to the Staten Island ferry. After being sniffed by the bomb-detecting, but very gentle dog, we headed to the loading dock were all the riders completed their post program surveys. Once on the boat we lined up our bikes and all of the riders sat attentively as Dan gave the lesson and explained how the five boroughs seem to create a fortress around New York Harbor! He also explained some history about our destination Snug Harbor. Did you know Herman Melville’s (author of Moby Dick) brother Thomas was once the governor of Snug Harbor? Along the ride we enjoyed some great views of the harbor, including Governor’s Island, the statue of liberty and the Verrazano Bridge. As we neared the St. George terminal we had a great view of the skylines of Jersey City, Manhattan and Brooklyn from west to east.
Once at SI we began to head to our destination! We went deep into the estate to find the (not-so) Secret Garden–a hedge maze with a garden in the middle. Although there wasn’t really much to see in the garden itself, it reminded us that it’s more about the journey than the destination—which serves as a great mantra for Cyclopedia! We fueled up on sandwiches and fruit before heading back the way we came, back to the boat. We had a bit of a detour when the usual route turned out to be closed but we quickly found the Hudson River Greenway, passed 1 World Trade Center, then continued up the Hudson, seeing our old friends the John J. Harvey Boat and the Intrepid. After making our way across town and through Central Park, we made it back to the Beacon School! Great Ride! Congratulations to all of this season riders and a special shout out to Kayelah and Estuardo have had perfect attendance!
Thanks Speed Dusters for a great season!
This trip was on August 20, 2013
Programming time: 8 hours
Ride time: 7 hours 30 minutes
Ride Distance: 22.9 miles
Walk Distance: 0.62 miles
Calories Burned: About 1500 Calories
Leaders: Cappy Collins, Justin Downs, Dan Piening