The number of riders who showed up for this 16/25/50 Narragansett Bay Wheelmen ride looked to be around the hundred mark. The first group of 19+ MPH average speed riders was the largest, followed by the 15+mph. The rest of us filled in at the back of the pack.
My riding companion for the day. We got very lost.
I decided to stay with a woman who was on her first NBW ride and opted to take her on the 26 mile option. While we were yakking away, we missed an arrowed turn in Dighton. We only had to backtrack a mile to find the red arrows for this ride. As we were following I couldn't shake the feeling that something was amiss. Why didn't the faster riders doing the 50 miler start to overtake us. The feeling intensified as were were riding through Somerset, MA. I kept thinking that we shouldn't be in Somerset but in Swansea. We decided to trust the red arrows and carry on. I knew the area somewhat and my sense of direction (which is pretty good), confirmed that we were heading toward Swansea. Up, up, up some hills till we finally saw some of the hammerheads who rode their bikes to the start point returning home. Then we saw more, and more and I'm thinking, gee, a lot of people rode their bike to the lot. Finally I asked one guy "is this the way to the bike shop". He pointed emphatically that I needed to turn around.
My riding partners twice pulled out her phone and was going to call family to come and pick her up. I convinced her that we were close and only had to back track a couple of miles to get to the finish line. That's when I saw the ORANGE arrows. We had been following red and somehow stumbled our way back to the arrowed route. We finished our 26 mile ride in just over 34 miles. Not to bad for being off course by a whole city. It all worked out as it always does on a bike. I did have to convince our first time rider that getting lost should not be traumatic, it's an adventure.
We came across this giant Tulip Tree and are saddened to see a piece of US history lost.
Read about this tree planted by a signer of the Declarations of Independence HERE
I shouldn't have been able to take this photo if it wasn't for the fact that that we were so far off course.