Tour de Staten Island, April 22, 2018

Transportation Alternatives sponsored “Tour de Staten Island,” a bike ride to raise awareness of transportation issues. Candace and I participated and picked the 50 mile route (which turned out to be a bit shorter.

Candace came from Manhattan on the Staten Island Ferry while I drove the van with out bikes from Pennington, NJ. We met about 8 am and made it to the start to register and join in the mass start.

The ride itself was very nice, but we had a few problems. My GPS mysteriously refused to power up. I had loaded the routes i the GPS and had to get a (three page!) paper cue sheet instead. It was easy to follow the group, and there were road markings so we never really needed the cue sheet. Also, at the first rest stop, I figured out how to get the route on my phone.

A much bigger problem: Just after the second rest stop we started up a hill and I attempted to shift from the big to the middle ring but apparently the chain came completely off. So I shifted back and kept pedaling figuring the derailleur would act as a re-railleur. No, the chain broke and bent the derailleur. The first fix was to bend it back (I carry tools!) and try to keep it in the middle ring. Didn’t work, the derailleur was loose. So we took the derailleur completely off and put the chain in the middle ring. Didn’t stay there but insisted on falling off to the granny gear. So I rode the second half of the ride entirely in the granny gear. Turns out this is not as bad as it sounds. The granny gear range overlaps with the three lowest gears of the big ring; I just couldn’t go fast, but we weren’t going fast anyway!

The rest stops had lots of healthy food and the beer at the end was appreciated! By totally random chance Candace ran into a colleague of hers from the Department of Investigations. They had quite a chat in the beer garden.

Afterwards we rode back to the ferry, put the bikes in the van and had dinner at Steiny’s Pub. Then Candace took the ferry back to Manhattan, and I drove the van with bikes back to Pennington.

The track of our route (recorded by the RidewithGPS app on my phone) can be seen here.

Clicking on a photo below brings up a larger version. You can also activate a slide show.