Tuesday, January 26, 2010

January's first ride

It's January, it's cold, it's dreary out there but every Friday I peak at my Goldie just to make sure she's still there waiting for me.  I glance at Goldie and hope the weather will be good for the weekend.  The sun streaming in through the garage window keeps her heart warm, faintly warming her beautiful sleek body with the gold paint glowing in the sun. The weekend finally arrived and the weather is good, no time to waste, lets get out there and enjoy the day while the weather holds.  I called my brother and his Bimmer was ready to go in no time.  Our good friend Wayne joined us on his beautiful red Triumph.  With the early morning still on the cold side, my heated liner was plugged in and we hit the road. The plan was to ride out to the BMW dealer in Metuchen to take a look at riding gear and then follow back roads to Frenchtown where we would have lunch.
We left Jackson towards Freehold along Jackson Mills Road and then turned left into Georgia Road which has some nice fast winding turns.  We crossed Freehold and rode past Monmouth Battlefield State Park where dense smoke filled the road from controlled burning by the State Park rangers.  We continued on Co. Rd. 522 through Englishtown and then followed Co. Rd. 527 until Route 18.  After a few miles on 18 we entered Route 1 and then crossed over to Route 27 and made our way to Cross Country BMW.  We had coffee, talked to friends, looked at gear and promptly left.  The temperature had risen high enough by now and the heated gear was promptly disconnected.
We made our way to Route 22 and followed it until Route 202 where we proceeded west, quickly dispatching with the light traffic and enjoying the rolling country side along Route 12, cows lifting their heads to look at us, probably annoyed by the buzzing sound of our bikes.
Three very different engines producing a symphony of sounds.  The BMW's twin, the Triumph's triple and the Goldie's quad cylinders going through their motions with a beautiful staccato.

We enter Frenchtown, a quaint and charming and quite photogenic little town.  Frenchtown is a little Victorian village on the Delaware River and probably the best kept secret in NJ.  We park our bikes and after a quick stroll we make our way to "The Cafe Greco of Frenchtown", a small but cozy restaurant on Bridge Street.  If you ever go there you have to try one of their Panini sandwiches, their are tasty and the bread is made on location.  They also offer an assortment of scrumptious fresh cookies.

After lunch we crossed the river into Pennsylvania and turned south on River Road, Route 32 towards New Hope.  The road along the river passes through little towns and is a favorite with riders, the undulations and left right sweeps providing a beautiful riding experience.  In the cold months, one has to pay attention and be alert at all times, as water coming down the side of the mountain can freeze on the road and surprise even experienced riders.  It's better to stay towards the center of the road as it offers more time to view road obstacles and dangerous road conditions around the turns.
We arrive in New Hope with daylight dwindling fast, the town still brimming with people walking along it's sidewalks and enjoying the many restaurants.  We decided to continue as we still had another hour to get home.  We continued along Route 32 South past the Washington Crossing Historic Park and then made a left on General Washington Memorial Blvd and crossed back to New Jersey.  Back in home territory we followed Route 29 until it turns into Interstate 195 and proceeded East towards Jackson.  We arrived home, the sun going down fast and another great ride on a short winter day.

My friend Wayne and my brother with our respective rides parked in Frenchtown

Photos of charming Frenchtown

 Charming little guy

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