We tried to get an early start this morning, so we left the motel around 7am and rode back into downtown to the only breakfast place we knew of, the Backside Cafe. Unfortunately, the cafe doesn’t open until 8am. We did a bit of reconnoitering to see if there was anyplace else to eat, but even the coffee shops were all closed. Didn’t Yankees used to get up early and get about he day’s work? Not anymore I guess.

Once the cafe opened we had a good breakfast, though it was a bit expensive. Due to the breakfast delay, we didn’t head out of town until nearly 9am. Our route followed the West River upstream, away from the Connecticut River. It was mostly a gentle grade at the beginning, though the darned demoralizing head wind was still with us. As we got further west and up into the foothills of the Green Mountains, the step bits of climbing became more and more frequent.

We planned to stop at the Dam Diner, which is near the Townsend Dam in Townsend, but when we got there there was a sign on the door announcing that it was “Closed Tuesdays.” Damn Dam Diner! So we pressed on to Jamaica where we stopped at the general store and bought a freshly-made sandwich, some cookies, and a drink.

From Jamaica the road finally tilted up rather steeply, and there were even a couple sections I walked up, though Jodi as usual powered up them on her bike. We reached the junction of Rt 30 and Rt 11, which is at the crest of the ridge, at 2:09pm. From here the road is a longish downhill coast all the way into Manchester Center. The steepest part is the first 4 miles or so, which took us 9 minutes. After coasting into town we stopped at the grocery store to get supplies for dinner: some sweet Italian sausage, green peppers, onions, pasta and sauce. Then we cycled the mile or so down the road to the Green Mountain House Hostel.

I first stayed at the hostel during my AT thru-hike back in 2009. Since then Jodi and I have been up here for a weekend of cycling every year, and this makes my 4th stay at the hostel. default icon20120703.gpx