Last week, because of a few raindrops, I wussed out at the halfway mark of the Baltimore Bicycling Club's annual Civil War Metric Century. This weekend the weather was much nicer so I decided to head up to Thurmont and do the same course solo. There wouldn't be any supported rest stops on the 64 mile route this time, but I usually go 30 miles before stopping and at the 34 mile mark I knew there was a grocery store where I could restock
A lot of this ride is a variation of the Frederick 3 Covered Bridges route. At the start you head south and go through the Utica Mills covered bridge and then start heading north. There was a good deal of fog but it was well above the road and started to burn off.
After a nice stretch of Old Frederick Road, at about the 15 mile mark you go through the Loy's Station covered bridge. From there it was another 18 miles through Emmitsburg MD and then much climbing to Fairfield, PA where I stopped to refill my water bottles and down some healthy snacks Poptarts at the local grocery. One thing I didn't find - a porta Potty in which to recycle my coffee and the water I hadn't sweated off. That would have to wait for a stop in the woods.
From Fairfield you head northeast on some tiny and rough backroads, and go through the very scenic Sachs Covered Bridge and into the Gettysburg Battlefield National Park - where there was a roadside porta Potty that saved me from defiling the hallowed grounds.
The sun came out at this point and a very brisk wind started up from the south - just as I turned south on Bollinger Creek Road through farmland and gentle rolling hills. Three wild turkeys ran across the road in front of me along this stretch. I hadn't done a ride longer than 53 miles this year, so at the 55 mile mark I stopped at the turn onto Tom's Church Road and ate a fig bar, downed another water bottle and enjoyed the view of the Catoctin Ridge to the west.
Ho hum, another covered bridge - the Roddy Road version. There must have been a sale at Lowe's on Covered Bridge Red Brick paint.
The last few miles were just a slog south into downtown Thurmont and back to my car. Sixty four miles and 3,600 feet of climbing prepared me for the next day's hike with Carl on the 5 mile Sugarloaf Mountain 3 peaks route, where we ran into a very large Meetup group that probably hit the nearby Sugarloaf Winery after taking in the view at the White Rocks.