5-31-10 Day 3: Brownville Junction, Maine to Farmington, Maine; 94 miles in 6:09
Ouch!!! Wow, back in the saddle in a real way today with nearly a century of riding. We camped at a pretty sweet State Park and then drove me back the 25 miles east to where I finished yesterday – at Brownville Junction. Bill joined me for the first leg as we just managed to skate through two Memorial Day parades, the first in Brownville and the second in the town of Milo. So the route took us south on Rt 11 to Milo, and then on Rt 6/16 southwest from Milo to Dover-Foxcroft and to Guilford. Each of these small towns was having its parade, and it made me think of every small town in America today having the very same thing. Pretty cool actually. So then we got on Rt 150 south from Guilford to Skowhegan, which at about the half way point is where Judy joined me and Bill hopped off the bike to drive.
With Bill, we were climbing from the gun, up short and steep and up long and gradual, just climbing and climbing across the Maine Highlands. Jesus this state is handing me my ass from the get go. Like I started out feeling really good this morning, and then by 40 miles in – sheeeeeit was I sore. Bill did an outstanding job in riding 53 miles with me, hung there the whole way but for the last two climbs.
Now let me say a few things about Northern Maine – garage sales, junkyards and smokers!! Maine………I love you, beautiful place, outstanding actually. BUT….damned near every other person in Northern Maine has so much shit piled up in front of their house, well, it looks like a freaking junkyard. Seriously, house after house with the yards filled, brimming over with junk. Let me tell you, the guys from the History Channel’s American Pickers, those guys need to visit Northern Maine – they’d be rich! Ok and then there’s the garage sales, again, every other house is selling the shit that’s piled up in the front yard. Ends up that neighbor number one buys shit from neighbor number 2 and neighbor number two buys shit from neighbor number one – and bingo they’re just trading shit! Finally the smoking, good God the smoking up here. Long grey hair tied back in a ponytail and an earing….and smoking. Long live the 60’s generation! Put those three things together and this is your Northern Mainelander. Nice folks, great attitude, but man, they kind of live on the fringe.
So after 53 miles of getting my ass kicked on the climbs Bill dismounts and Judy joins me…and sudddeny we hit very long graduals and flats on Rt 150, and then on our turn to the west on Rt 2 – same thing. No more nasty climbing. Felt pretty good for a bit, and then after awhile, about 75 miles in started to feel a bit hypoglycemic. Fought through that for 5 miles and then I was so-so. Judy got in two really solid hours with me and then stopped and got in the van with Bill. By 80 miles and with the 75-degree temp and sun – I was cooked. But Bill and Judy told me there was a camping area in Farmington, so I decided to keep it rolling so we wouldn’t have to backtrack like we did today.
I was totally whacked by the time Bill and Judy stopped to ask how I was doing, yet I still had 4 miles to go to Farmington. So I told them to just buy me a Gatorade and a sub and wait for me at the first little grocery store in town. Done! After a shot period of hell I was there, with Judy standing at the side of the road with an ice cold blue Gatorade and a sub. I was in temporary heaven. Had to sit down against a tree in the shade to just collect myself.
Got it rolling shortly thereafter to go just a few miles further on Rt 2 west to a little campground just outside of Farmington. Pulled in and I just went straight to a picnic table in the sun and downed three ice cold beers. Sitting here in my van doing the blog after muching down on Indian pasta with chicken, dogs, sausage sandwiches and sausage links. I’m sporting the full on Buda belly and feeling pretty happy. Ahhhhhhh on the road again.And about working out after a ride like this……..are you kidding me? I was hoping to do pushup, pullup and upside down pushups to stay in upper body shape during this trip. NOT! No energy. So let them pecs start sagging and those guns whither to broomstick handles. I’m out……..Pete