Labor Day Trip to Connecticut 2009

Diana’s Bike at Harriman State Park

Our second annual Labor Day Trip to visit John and Margie in Danbury, Connecticut on Saturday September, 5th was a complete success! We chose a phenominal route, had a beautiful sunny day and no problems of any kind.

Stockton Bridge

The Delaware River

Our trip from Newark, Delaware to New Milford, Connecticut covered 280 miles of scenic roads. We left at 9:00 am. With the exception of the first hour and a half of busting butt up Interstate 95 through Philly to Trenton, NJ the route was completely awesome. We traveled through back country roads, quaint old towns, a parkway and several state parks without hitting anymore Interstates. Travelling through Philly on such a nice day wasn’t too bad, the Philadelphia skyline was an impressive sight with sunny blue skys as the backdrop.

George Washington Crossing

Geroge Washington Crossing Park

We got off I95 after crossing the Delaware River at Trenton and exited onto Rt 29 River Road. This road follows the meandering Delaware River, passes George Washington Crossing State Park and ends in Frenchtown, New Jersey. In Frenchtown we picked up Rt 513 which is the 85 mile star of this trip which enabled us to travel up through the middle of New Jersey on colonial era roads through farmland, mountain ranges and qaint towns to get to West Milford, NJ. If you follow Rt 513 be careful when you get to Dover, NJ because there is a lack of signage for this route though town. From Prospect Street bang a right onto West Blackwell Street and follow it all the way to the end and then bang a left onto what I believe is Rockaway Road.

Rt 513 ends in West Milford. We beared right at the Shop Rite shopping plaza. I think this is Rt 696 but there was no sign that I remember saying so. It is probably marked as Marshall Hill Road. It merges to Rt 511 but again the signage was lacking. It may have been marked as Greenwood Lake Turnpike. This road takes you down through the scenic Wanaque Reservoir. Keep an eye out for a sharp left onto Sloatsburg Road which is Rt 697 but not marked as such. This road will take you through Ringwood Manor State Park and will become Sterling Mine Road once you cross into New York state. Sterling Mine Road, or Rt 72, will dump you onto Rt 17 North in Sloatsburg, NY. There is a cool biker friendly tavern on the right called the Rhodes North Tavern that was packed with bikes.

Diana and Jay at the Rhodes North Tavern

Inside the Rhodes North Tavern

Just past the Rhodes North tavern you bang a right onto Seven Lakes Drive. Seven Lakes takes you past seven lakes and threads you right through the heart of both Harriman and Bear Mountain State Parks. This was up there at the top of my list of most beautiful roads I have been on so far and it is safe to say this is the most beautiful road I have been on north of the Mason Dixon. As you pass through the park these mountain lakes spring up on both sides of the road one after another. Some are filled with swimmers, others with sail boats. It was awesome!

Diana on Seven Lakes Drive

Harriman State Park

Motorcycles in Harriman

Bear Mountain State Park

We exited the park onto the Palisades parkway and then followed Route 6 East to the Bear Mountain Bridge to cross the Hudson River. On the other side of the river follow Rt 6 and Rt 202 to the right along the cliffs of the New York Military Reservation on the Hudson for the best S-turns ever! Take the Bear Mountain Parkway briefly to Rt 63 heading north on North Division Street. This will become Oregon Road which will become Oscawana Lake Road. Take a left onto Canopus Hollow Road which merges with Dennytown Road.

Dennytown Road is the most curvy hilly road I have ever encountered! Diana found out about it on a chat board where someone boasted it was the best road they had ever been on. This road is killer, you have to check it out! It takes you into Clarence Fahnestock State Park where you can catch Rt 301. Rt 301 runs through the park and is absolutely gorgeous! It is my favorite find. Not only do rocket bikes use this road as a miniature version of an AMA race course but it takes you past several lakes and then actually takes you across a lake before you come out of the woods in Carmel. If you want to go to Danbury from Carmel, follow Rt 301 to the end and take a right onto Rt 52 heading south about a block before you catch Rt 6 East which will take you into Connecticut and to Danbury.

We were going to meet our friends at an Octoberfest in West Milford so Diana planned a scenic route taking us further north. We exited Clarence Fahnestock State Park at the Taconic Parkway and took the parkway at expressway speed north to Beekman Road. We took Beekman past Rt 55 and took a right onto Wingdale Rd which is Rt 21. We followed Rt 21 east to Rt 55 which took us across the border into Connecticut and ended at the southerly portion of the scenic portion of Rt 7 just a ways south of Kent but north of New Milford. We enjoyed the cool part of Rt 7 that was made for a motorcycle knowing that it would soon become a major suburban artery that carries mini vans to and from shopping stores, strip malls and everything the small city of New Milford has to offer. We arrived at New Milford High School at 6:00pm, parked our bikes and met our friends for the second year in a row at the Octoberfest. Cold German beer, potato pancakes and bratwurst were waiting for us!

We arrived at Octoberfest

Octoberfest

A great end to a great ride

We had an awesome day and then went to the John and Margie B&B. Our favorite guestroom with big fluffy pillows awaited our sleepy heads. It’s home away from home, but nicer. The perfect end to a perfect ride and a perfect day!

the guest room

7 Responses to “Labor Day Trip to Connecticut 2009”

  1. Dennytown Road sounds like one I’ll have to file away for when I get out that way. I think you meant to say 2009, instead of 2010.

  2. Sounds like a great ride, and a great day!

  3. Silly me, it is still 2009 isn’t it? Can I claim this website functions on Harley-Davidson model year calendar?

  4. Jay.. was going to leave a smarta** remark about time travel but someone already brought the date issue to your attention.. will save the wisecrack for another time. I’m sure the opportunity will avail itself. sounds like you guys had a great ride/time!

  5. Thanks for holding back on the smart comments. Anyhow I have fixed the title of my post from 2010 to 2009. I guess I just got ahead of myself a little bit.

  6. Thanks for sharing. I’ve been busy riding for work with little time to ride for pleasure. Your post was a refreshing mental trip. What a great day to file away in the memory box!

  7. Glad you all are enjoying the story of the trip.

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