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Day Eight: Reprieve Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

We are now hanging out at Miles Standish on Charge Pond for a couple days camping with friends. The plan is to do the entire trip back home on Sunday. After some rest, that shouldn’t be much worse than some of the long days we’vw already had and we won’t need to bike anymore afterwards!

Yesterday, a dirt road that we had followed for a mile ended in a bush about a mile from where it was supposed to meet up with the park road. Isaac wanted to persue a scraggly path into the woods from that point, but I had to insist it was too uncertain. It took us many extra miles including miles of dirt road and directions from skeptical locals to get us around to the park entrance. By the time we did, it was after dark and the bugs in the park woods were so thick that it was impossible to open one’s mouth while ridign without catching a fly. :x. Similarly, we had to wear our sunglasses into the night to protect our eyes from insects. We setup and climbed into our hammocks as fast as we could.

Today, we biked out of the park to a nearby town to do laundry and have some lunch. Our trip mileage now exceeds 300miles and will approach 400 by the time of our return.

Keeping my phone charged has continued to be a challenge. After Thursday in the Sun, my solar charger had enough juice to charge my phone an extra 25% and that got us through the day. I think some new techniques for positioning the charger on my bike might help its efficiency. It doesn’t really make sense to me that 10 hours in 80-90 degree sunshine can’t provide a little more energy.

We have been noticing that people are interested in what we are doing in ways we didn’t expect. Isaac walked into a Dunkin’ Donuts that we had never been in before and was immediately identified as a Fernandez brother on a bike trip returning from Provincetown before anyone had a chance to see his jersey. We think the woman might have seen us at another Dunkin’ Donuts earlier in the trip. Either way, at least once a day we run into someone who wants to ask us about what we are doing, ask about our gear, or tell us stories of personal biking experiences. Some people just ask for clarification in disbelief and others seem to want to come along! We haven’t yet figured out how to make this public interest work for us, but we’ve got plenty of time on our bikes to dream it up.

Day Three: Plague of Silkworms Sunday, May 17th, 2009

We had a shorter day today. My odometer ended the day at 33.7mi. The trip odometer is at about 115mi. There was plenty of excitement though. The climax of the day, near the end of our travels, was walking our bikes over the Sagamore bridge into Cape Cod. It’s an inspiring bridge spanning the canal with a jungle gym of steel and a signs displaying it’s proud heretage as a 1933-1935 public works project. Now, a generation later, it supports highway traffic at rates of 100 cars/minute and the only passage for the diligent bicyclist is a minimum width sidewalk on the northern side of the bridge. A concurrant encounter to that of the landmark was the passing of a heavily bearded man who is the only cyclist we have seen with anything near our amount of load. In fact, he was carrying twice the bike luggage we each have! It would have been interesting to chat, but the traffic on the bridge is so loud one can bearly hear themselves.

Although our distance today was relatively modest, we are getting tired and sore. I think our bodies are using as much energy moving the bicycle as they are repairing tired muscles. As a result, it’s hard to eat enough. Today, I ate:

  • 2.5 Kashi GoLean Bars
  • Handful of Peanuts
  • Half a large Antipasto Salad
  • 2 Footlong Italian Sandwiches
  • Half of a large frosted sugar cookie
  • Half a Broiled Seafood Combination Platter

and the best I can say for my digestive state is “satisfied”. I wouldn’t turn down a second dessert. :)

We are now settled in Shawme-Crowell state forest. We are experts at setting up camp and both hammocks go up in minutes. It is very quiet here, as the camping season clearly isn’t going yet. Everything would be great except there is some kind of small silk spinning tree worm that is attacking the campsite. Quite literally, they are falling from the sky by lowering themselves down from tree branches. A stroll across the campsite guarantees you at least one unwanted passanger. Either we are running into them or they are attracted to us because there are many more on us that on any inanimate objects. Luckily, we feel safe elevated and enclosed in the hammocks.

There’s only one day of riding left to Provincetown, but it’s going to be a challenge. Sore and tired we must complete nearly 60 miles to reach our destination. The consolation lies in the day we get off of riding afterwards and the comfy hotel bed we get Monday night. We are also hoping that motorist free bike paths here on the cape will smooth tomorrow’s journey.

Hammocks 2, Rain Storms 0 Sunday, May 17th, 2009

Somehow, the rain forecast for today has improved and we are humid, but dry this morning. Last night it rained steadily for some time and the wind whipped my rain fly around like a dust mite in a box fan and yet the only water in my hammock was from a leaky water bottle! This is the second time we’ve experienced rain in the hammocks since we bought them. When you’re in the hammock, there’s a pretty good view out the sides where you would expect the rain to blow in, but the fly is wide enough that this doesn’t happen as long as all your knots hold.

The KOA is a pretty cushy campground and I have the luxury of charging my phone right now in the laundry room. There is a pool, a playground, a general store, and we’ve been told by other campers that they have WiFi on site. However, our campsite was sufficiently wooded for the hammocks and the grounds quieted down nicely at night.

Off to the next task of the morning: finding some quarters to run the dryer and take the damp out of our clothes.

Go Friday, May 15th, 2009

Bike Route Logo

And we’re off…

Packing List Thursday, May 14th, 2009

 Packing a bike for a 10 day bike tour isn’t as simple as it sounds. Being exposed to the unpredictable for ten days incites a desire for all sorts of gear, but each pair of socks slows you down and there’s not much room to pack. After many hours of deliberation, only these few items made the cut:


Itinerary Tuesday, May 12th, 2009
Friday 05/15/09 35.4 Newton, MA
Saturday 05/16/09 39 Boston Area KOA
Sunday 05/17/09 31.2 Shawme Crowell State Forest
Monday 05/18/09 56.3 Provincetown
Tuesday 05/19/09 10 Provincetown
Wednesday 05/20/09 10 North Truro
Thursday 05/21/09 23.1 Nickerson State Park
Friday 05/22/09 49.5 Myles Standish
Saturday 05/23/09 50 Boston Area
Sunday 05/24/09 40 The Manor
  Total 344.5  
Ossining, a town, a distination, a vestige of family history Sunday, May 10th, 2009
Dear family, friends and fans, 
What I really want to blog about is a bike ride I went on last Sunday.   Before I do I will mention a bike ride Devon and I finished yesterday.  We participated in a charity ride.  The options were to ride 10,25, or  50 miles.  Although we had planned to do each ride consecutively we ended up only doing the 50 mile ride plus an extra 6 miles just for fun.  We had to restrict ourselves because someone (I don’t want to mention names) forgot their helmet and so we were the last team to start and finish.  However, we did conquer the ride and despite a fight I had with my bike (yes I won) it was a successful ride. 


Packing List: Toothpick Holder Wednesday, May 6th, 2009
Toothpick Holder

Toothpick Holder

You’ve been on the road for days. You’ve lost count of the miles between you and home. The only things in your world are your bike and the pavement it’s rolling over like a tank in Tiananmen Square. But wait, you’re loosing speed and the consistency of your ride has gone from roller skate to rolling banana. It can’t be so! Still you hardly notice that your water bottle is empty and your granola bar is already gone because you’re confident in the situation. You’ve got your tire patches and your bike pump and if you can’t find that leak you’ll just blow up your tube and stick a handy toothpick in the hole to mark it.

In the old days, this critical situation might hinge on a flimsy plastic wrapper to protect the little wooden tool, but not on this trip!

Pretour Training Challenge Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

Today I encountered wind I could barely bike into. It even brought down a couple branches around me. Plus, I spent half my effort just maintaining lane position. I’m starting to think that wind is the cyclists top performance and safetly enemy, except if you’re a Fernandez brother during the next two weeks. In that case, your enemy is your brother. That is to say, with a short few weeks until the big event, it’s time to motivate training with a little friendly competition. We will be tracking miles ridden through May 11th. As a gesture of nondescrimination in training routines, running miles will be credit three times towards cycling. This post will be updated with progress. Let’s make the Provincetown tour look easy!


Interstate Bike Ride Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

Map Interstate RidingNew York is doing fine. I checked on her today. She is still there. I figured why do a intrastate ride when I could do a interstate ride. It was my first ride by myself. There was alot of hills toward the middle of my ride. I set out to do a 25 mile loop but after riding 15.5 miles out and not seeing my turnaround point I decided to turn back and thus no loop. Here are my riding states for the day.

Time: 2hours 38minutes
Distance: 31.1 miles
Top Speed: 35 mph
Elevation: 900ft total ascent

I felt pretty good the entire ride. I didnt stop or really feel a need to rest. There is a difference when you are not carrying any load. I will go out again this weekend.