What a ride into Great Barrington! First, the forecast was for rain, so I got started early. It was 9 am. I kept my rain coat on top of my bags because I knew I'd be using it at some point in the ride. The ride started with a big climb right out the gate. With no warm up and the previous days hard climbing, it was a challenge! The good news was that there was a big downhill on the other side then pretty much flat riding with minor ups and downs into Great Barrington.
But of course, Google had some other plans to make the ride "interesting". On this ride I was on gravel for about 10 miles. I can't tell you how many times I bitched Google out and just wanted to get back on pavement as I was getting the shit rattled out of me.
Now there are some nice thing about things about the gravel like no (or few) cars and the scenery was gorgeous as I rode up the Housatonic River. 2 of the gravel roads were named after it - River Dr. in West Cornwall I got on right after the covered bridge.
And Housatonic River Dr. shortly thereafter. Google was sneaky about it. Each of the roads started with pavement and turned to gravel after about a mile adding miles to turn around, not to mention the nagging "Please do a U turn." until I got rerouted. One of these dirt roads turned to dirt at the CT/MA border so Google let me know with "Welcome to Massachusetts!" in my ears. Of course there was no sign that I could take a picture of. That is one of the surprises I continue to encounter where there isn't even a line marker at these points in the roads. Some of these crossing points were on good roads though low traveled. The crossing from VA to WV for example or the crossing from NY into CT had no markings whatsoever.
As expected the rain came! I was able to make about 20 of my 42 miles before taking off my light jacket and putting my rain coat on. Now, my rain coat is Gore-tex from many years ago so it's a little tight around the middle! And with the exertion, I'm sweating, so the idea that it keeps you dry is somewhat of a misnomer. However, it did keep me warm with my long sleeved shirt underneath. I was happy to see the motel and dripped all over the sign-in paperwork as I was longing for the shower. The Barrington Brewery was a short walk away and I had some good beers and food before crashing for the night. Today I've found a B&B in Cummington, MA that is willing to take care of me, so I've got to get out again to beat the rain!