The journey is more important than the destination!Being a passionate cyclist and traveler, I used to hear this phrase a lot, but the true essence of it was revealed during the CoVid-19 pandemic. Because of the pandemic, I too was stuck inside my home and was not able to travel anywhere, not the way I used to.
It’s truly a depressing feeling to be stuck in one place and not be able to do what you love to do the most. Travelling has always been more about the journey for me, because of my craze for cycling.
I have been cycling since my childhood, and my passion led me to various long tours across the US. The idea that you can’t ride a cycle everywhere seems outdated to me.
Now that the pandemic is almost at its end and most of the travel restrictions have been removed, I decided to go on a new adventure.
This adventure was supposed to suck out all my depression, anxiety, and frustration that had gathered in me while being stuck at home during the pandemic.
So, I planned to start my longest adventure and break my personal record of cycling on day one. It wasn’t going to be an easy journey, but I was absolutely sure that it will be worth it every inch of the way.
Without much packing and planning, I left my home with some basic supplies and cash in my backpack and started my bike tour from Waltham, Massachusetts to Washington.
- Bike Ride from Waltham Massachusetts to Washington – The Journey Begins
- First Day of Bike Tour from from Waltham, Massachusetts to Washington
- Second Day of my Bike Tour from Waltham, Massachusetts to Washington
- Reached Washington Finally on a Bike!
Bike Ride from Waltham Massachusetts to Washington – The Journey Begins
I started my journey at about 7 in the morning, alone and motivated to break my record and complete at least 180 miles of distance in one day.
First Day of Bike Tour from from Waltham, Massachusetts to Washington
I planned a set of milestones beforehand, and the very first one was Milford which was about 26 miles away from my starting location.
Started Bike Ride from Waltham, MA to Milford
Obviously, I wasn’t going to cover 487 miles in one day, not unless I attached rockets to my cycle, so I planned to cover more than 1/3rd of the journey, which would allow me to complete it in three days.
The idea seemed far-fetched since I was out of practice. Though I never left exercising and constantly worked out even during a pandemic, real cycling is different.
The best part about cycling is, that you find various companions along the way. They laughed hard when I told them about my goal, but they weren’t making fun of me. Rather, they were just amazed to hear how crazy I am.
Several other cyclists kept joining me every now and then, as I was going through bicycle lanes on my way to Milford.
I reached Milford in about 3 hours, which was half hour longer than my estimated time. However, I went to a nice coffee spot Dunkin in Milford which was on the way, and had some coffee with donuts.
Then, after 30 minutes I continued my journey again, this time with a bigger milestone and at a faster pace.
Bike Ride from Milford to Hampton
My next target was to cover at least 50 miles before lunch. It wasn’t going to be easy, but my first milestone in the morning gave me all the warm-up I needed.
I refilled my water and juice bottle, packed some snacks, and went on my way. Since I wasn’t finding any new travel partners for some time, I started my cycling playlist on my iPod and increased my pace.
I took the path from Blackstone to Rode Island because it had less incline on the road and also was quicker. Although there was no difference in the distance through both routes, the plain road allowed me to conserve my energy for the long journey ahead.
On the Broncos Highway, I was again accompanied by a group of cyclists. Although I didn’t want to take any more stops before achieving my next milestone, I did agree to another cup of coffee with them.
So, we stopped for some refreshments at the Village Green Café near Chepachet, Gloucester and after just a 15 minutes break, I started back on my path.
For the next 15-20 miles, I didn’t take a single break. My pace was getting faster, and the adrenaline rush in my body felt amazing. I was back into shape and felt almost free as a bird.
I took another short break at the Pomfret Recreation Park for some refreshments and to regain my energy. Then I started again and before long I had reached my second milestone.
It was about 3:00 PM when I reached Hampton. I was still far from my goal but I had successfully covered almost half, and I knew after my brief but necessary lunch, I would regain all the stamina I need to finish my goal by the night.
Night stay at Bridgeport, CT after achieving goal of 180 miles in a day
My original goal for the day was to reach Bridgeport CT. I needed to reach there by nightfall to break my personal record and set a new record of 180 miles in one day.
So, after leaving Hampton, I started my journey towards my next milestone which is New Haven. I could have taken the path from Hartford and added an additional rest spot but my destination for the day was far away.
Hence, I took the Airline trail to reach New Haven as soon as possible. I made several pit stops along the way to rest and take my refreshments. As I already refilled my supplies at the last stop, I didn’t have to make any unnecessary spots and for this reason I was unable to capture any picture.
As the evening approached, I met a lot more cyclists on the trails. So, I had a chat with some of them while cycling, but I wasn’t able to find any long-distance companion.
Most of them were just out for a short round of cardio, but I got to meet new people and listen to their experiences.
They too were amazed to hear how far I had come in a single day. After reaching New Haven, I went to Cody’s Diner which was one of the most famous in the area and surprisingly I met the local cyclists with which I had a chat while cycling.
However, I wasn’t done yet. I just had a little more to go before I could finally make my bed for tonight.
After having dinner and a couple of drinks, I continued my journey to Bridgeport, CT. It was a short journey, way shorter than what I had covered during the whole day.
Finally, when I reached Bridgeport, it was an exhilarating feeling. I had finally broken my record after 2 years and covered more than 180 miles distance in a single day.
But, my legs were shaking from all the pain now. I was so tired. I found an affordable inn nearby to stay the night since I didn’t make any camping plans.
Luckily, Bridgeport is filled with cheap hotels and inns that serve quality drinks. I stayed the night in Lake View Hotel. The next morning, I woke up a bit late and then continued my journey.
Second Day of my Bike Tour from Waltham, Massachusetts to Washington
The journey ahead was much easier than I expected. I was able to find a lot more companions because the roads were a lot busier.
On way to New York, for most of the road, I was able to stay right beside the Long Island Sound of the Atlantic Ocean. Riding the bike on the bank was too amazing to be described in words.
I reached New York in the afternoon, and as much the city attracted me with its hustle and bustle, I couldn’t stay.
So, after taking some minor refreshments at local diners, I continued on my way to Trenton. I was able to reach Trenton before the evening which allowed me to go for Philadelphia and reach it by night.
It was my second day, and I was more focused on completing my journey than on spending more time at any place. So, I took minimum breaks and tried to paddle continuously.
The feeling I got from consistent paddling was exhilarating to an extreme extent. I didn’t want to stop, even when my legs begged me to. Because I hadn’t had this feeling for almost 2 years now and it felt like centuries had passed.
I was constantly joined by other passionate cyclists along the way. Some accompanied me for longer than I expected. Many offered to buy drinks and even lunch when I told them about my long and adventurous journey.
I stayed in Philadelphia on the second night. I was able to find multiple cheap hotels through Google and stayed in Quality Inn & Suites.
Reached Washington Finally on a Bike!
The journey left to cover on the final day was less than both the first and second. So, I got a little late and after having a quality breakfast from the hotel, I started my journey.
My milestones for today were Wilmington, Baltimore, and then Washington. It only took me an hour to reach Wilmington as I was in better shape than yesterday.
Then, my goal was to reach Baltimore in the afternoon. It wasn’t difficult and because I was relaxed, I didn’t have to ride faster than usual.
I was easily able to reach Washington by the evening. As soon as I arrived, I updated my friends and family members on social media.
Everyone was amazed to know that I covered such a vast distance in less than 3 days. Personally, I wasn’t feeling tired anymore. I felt that I could have gone even further, but for now, it was enough.
For now, I had compensated for the pent-up frustration that developed because of the pandemic and being stuck. I felt relieved. I had set my personal record, a new one of riding 180+ miles in a single day. Finishing my journey felt truly exhilarating. I discovered many new routes, met many new people, and made many new friends along the way. It was really a journey to be remembered for a lifetime.
Hi, I’m Alexandra Betty, co-founder of OutdoorGearsHub.com! I am a cycling enthusiast and currently living in Waltham, Massachusetts. I love just about everything about the cycling industry, which is why I created this site! Combining my passion with my work has always been extremely important to me. Feel free to reach out, leave comments, or recommend improvements to the site and its content so we can help you improve your cycling experience!
I am on a mission to enable everyone to spend more time on a bike and outdoors. So whether it’s on the road, gravel, mountain, e-biking, or just cruising around – Outdoor Gears Hub is the place to come for trusted advice.