Day 77 Singing Waters Campground to Newcomb, NY 66.5 miles

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My alarm went off at 5:30am. Alarm? I know most of you think this trip that Matt and I are on is somewhere between a hardcore adventure and glorified vacation, but yes, this is the first time I’ve set an alarm all summer. I did wake up exactly 10 minutes before it went off, a behavior that I have dealt with my entire life, but that I still don’t fully trust enough to not set the alarm. But anyhow, today we would need to bike into Blue Mountain Lake, a mere 40 miles away to make it to their post office before they close at noon. I also have no podcasts to listen to for the morning ride, something which I have solely come to rely on. The morning air was crisp and we turned on our reflector lights and headed out. We had the roads to ourselves until the sun started to peak over the mountains. We biked quickly before dawn up and down past the Fulton Chain of Lakes and quickly past Raquette Lake. The first 18 miles were a breeze, hilly but manageable. The wind was light and the reflection of blues off of the lakes were bouncing off the roadside marshes creating a sort of Fantasia. We made it to town by 10:30am, picked up my package (THANKS KATHY!) and stopped at the local convenience store for snacks and huge subs for lunch.

A local came up as we were eating at a picnic table, saw our bikes and started the old ten questions around where were from, where were headed and everything in between. After our rehearsed, tired explanation of our journey, he quickly gave us some road advise for the days to come. He said that there’s a two mile section of trail on Blue Ridge road that they are repaving and that it is fresh gravel at this point. He looked at our tires and said it was manageable. He also said the climb out of Blue Mountain is a tough one. Thus far the Adirondacks have been very mild, compared to the stuff we’ve already come through, so Matt and I both glanced at each other with a bit of confidence. We thanked the guy for his info and headed out. Sure enough, less than a mile from where we had just eaten, the road went straight up. I was so thankful I had eaten that big sub, as I could feel it start to kick in, as I lowered to granny gear and slowly struggled up the climb. At the top, I was impressed with Blue Mountain, sitting at 3750 feet. It was a nice climb, one that will surely help prepare us for the whites in New Hampshire.

We arrived in Newcomb, where we were going to resupply and camp for the night, but the store had a closed for the winter sign. I had tried calling a few times early and it just went to voice mail, so this was why I couldn’t make a reservation. We ended up spending the afternoon playing in Harris Lake, and got a pizza at the local bar that was still open. At around 6:30, we headed east, hoping to find some level ground somewhere along Blue Ridge Road to stealth camp. After we crossed the railroad tracks, there was nothing that looked flat enough for us to put the tent on. The forest was thick with pine and spruce and we pushed on. After about 4 miles, there was a small clearing hidden behind a rock wall and young pines and we quickly walked the bikes back off the road. We put up the tent and settled in, just as the sun began to set.

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