From John Dennis:
Eight of us departed EHP about 8:45am under partially cloudy skies, delayed by my hastily gathering oximeter readings from everyone. The ride out 89 to Brooktondale, down White Church and Coddington to Willseyville, and down 96B to Gridleyville (which consists of one house) was uneventful. We turned left onto the Gridleyville Crossing Road and continued to 96, where Luat Vuong headed back to town. The all-male residual consisted of Andy Goodell, Rob Ruttenberg, Ben Gray, Jeremy Gardiner, Owen Bailey, Sam Kolins and me. Shortly after passing the T-junction to Halseyville Road, we passed Wayne Gottlieb and Mark Sorrells heading the other way, back to Ithaca. They had already ridden the Halseyville loop while the air was still cool. Smart fellahs!
At Spencer, we found many riders saddling up including: Mark Sheehan, Jim Millar, Misty McPhee, Eric Lee, Sarah Strickland, Doug Dylla, Brenda Smith, Marcy Robinson, Erin Mcleod, Mary Mulvanerton, Gary Hodges, Jessica Walden, Rob Fergeson, and Jim McGarry.
The approach to Halseyville Road was actually blocked off by a new concrete bridge being cured under burlap moistened by three or more sprinklers that made us dance as we skipped across carrying our wet bikes. A local middle-aged cyclist stopped to watch as if he could not believe what he was seeing. Air temps, cloud cover, and scenery were all excellent. At Garry’s suggestion we turned right onto Ellis Creek Road about half way down to Route 17C. This new route to 17C cuts the travel time on 17C down by half and treated us to new landscapes. I suspect that anyone not in the first two groups or so continued straight. We did not take the alternate route to Waverly on West River Road on the PA side of the river, as we had already passed the bridge that crosses over to Hoopers Valley. After refueling in Waverly, we headed west on 17C and, taking the left over the bridge to 17, we hung a sharp right onto River Road and followed this charming, but pot-hole-ridden single-lane road alongside the Chemung River. River Road brought us to Route 60, which we followed for half a mile west before turning north onto Route 3/Wyncoop Creek Road. Our rolling climb had begun. Mark Sheehan continued west on Route 60 towards Elmira.
At the intersection with Marsh Road/Rte 4, we waited to regroup. However, we learned from Andy or Sam that Garry and possibly others had gone back to assist with a flat that occurred some distance behind them. Our lead group reaching Spencer consisted of Andy, Owen, Sam, Jim Millar, Jim McGarry, Eric Lee, Misty McPhee, Ben Gray, and myself. Continuing on to Ithaca au velo were Andy and Owen with Jim going part of that distance to reach home. [Andy] recorded his average speed from East Hill Plaza to Spencer as 17.6 mph with a distance of about 68 miles. Jim recorded cumulative climb in the Spencer-Halsey Valley Loop as 2000 feet.
And 3 of us (Sam, Owen and I) continued on from Spencer back to Ithaca. We took Fisher-Settlement Rd to South Danby Rd, which hits 96b. FS is a long dirt road with lots of small ups and downs, and by this time my legs were about done and the avg. speed was 13.5mph from Spencer to Ithaca. We split shortly before Ithaca College, and I rolled down the hill from there and the other two headed to East Hill Plaza, I believe.
Ithaca to Spencer: 17.7mph
After the Spencer loop: ~67 miles, 17.6mph
Total: ~87 miles, 16.5mph
Owen posted photos online on Picasa