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  • Writer's pictureAl S.

Getting Started - Baltimore, MD to Cape Henlopen, DE and then onward to Bordentown, NJ.

Updated: Sep 18, 2022



The hardest part of a long distance bike ride is getting out the front door. The most difficult mile of the entire trip will be the one just past the end of your driveway. Once you are on the road, it is all downhill.



 


Apr 27, 2021

Mileage: 56.0 miles

Odometer Start: 1634.5

Odometer End: 1690.5

Home in Baltimore to Tuckahoe State Park on the Eastern Shore of Maryland


I left Baltimore on April 27 to ride over to the coast at Cape Henlopen, DE. I had a friend that lives near Annapolis give me a ride across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge since bikes are not allowed and the authorities have made no provision to assist bicycles across the bridge. The only alternative to get to the Eastern Shore of Maryland is to ride north around the top of the bay. This would add ~200 miles to the trip... so bumming a ride seemed like a better option.


Camden Yards in downtown Baltimore.

I stopped by Orioles Park at Camden Yards to get a quick photo in front of the stadium. Unfortunately, I was not able to make it to any games prior to my departure since my COVID vaccination had only become effective 2 days prior to getting on the road. I did not want to take any chances of going to a ballgame and getting sick right before I left for this big ride.




My good friend Alice is really happy to see me!

I am really good friends with my buddy's dog... I hadn't seen her since before the pandemic. A side benefit of bumming a ride across the Bay Bridge was getting to see Alice. Not only did she remember me, she was really happy to see me again!


Once on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, I followed the Cross Island Trail for about 7 miles. This trail takes you off of Kent Island and across the Kent Island Narrows until you are on the "mainland" of the Eastern Shore.


I continued another 25 miles over to Tuckahoe State park where I found a nice little spot at the campground. The first day of the trip had gone as well as could be expected.



 

April 28, 2021

Mileage: 57.2 miles

Odometer End: 1750.3

Tuckahoe State Park on the Eastern Shore of Maryland to Cape Henlopen State Park, Delaware


Dipping my tires in the Atlantic Ocean.

The Eastern Shore of Maryland is flat and full of agriculture. The region is know for large chicken farms and a good part of the day was spent riding past the large barns.


I hit my first state line this morning as I crossed into Delaware near the town of Whiteleysburg. I hopped on the Georgetown-to-Lewes trail as I neared the coast and this took me all the way into Lewes, DE.


Cape Henlopen State Park has a campground and I was able to get a site for the evening. It is a really pleasant place, but the campground fills up quickly later in the season. If I had arrived a couple weeks later, I doubt there would have been any available sites for me.


I dipped the tires in the Atlantic Ocean this afternoon. The goal will be to get the tires wet in the Pacific Ocean later this summer.


I asked a beach-goer to take this picture and explained my plans for the summer. I might as well have had a second head growing out of my shoulders. It was obvious that me standing with my toes in the Atlantic Ocean and planning to ride to the Pacific Ocean just did not compute.


His one question out of the whole conversation was "What do you do if it rains?"... to which I replied "Get wet".



 

April 29, 2021

Mileage: 75.4 miles

Odometer End: 1829.4

Cape Henlopen State Park, DE to Wharton State Park, NJ




Waiting in line at the Lewes-Cape May Ferry.

I took the Lewes - Cape May Ferry over to New Jersey first thing in the morning. I was across the Delaware Bay and on the road by 10:15 in the morning. The ferry costs $8 to haul a bike across the bay... that is a bargain.







Welcome to New Jersey... state #3 on the tour.

Souther New Jersey is similar to the Eastern Shore... flat and full of agriculture.


I rode about 70 miles past Cape May and found a site at the campground in Wharton State Park. I can't say that I recommend this place, but it was better than sleeping under a bridge.


The people at the nearby campsites were absolutely terrible. They were loud, drunk, and up until 3 am. I wasn't necessarily worried for my safety, but I was definitely on high alert. Needless to say, I did not sleep a lot that night.



 

April 30, 2021

Mileage: 31.0 miles

Odometer End: 1860.5

Wharton State Park, NJ to Bordentown, NJ




I will definitely keep my eyes open!!

There was a wicked headwind this morning. It was really slowing me down. In addition, the roads eventually turned directly into the sun. I could barely see due to the sun being right in my eyes. That also means that the sun is in the eyes of any drivers coming up behind me. For the sake of safety, I will not ride directly into the sun. Therefore, I pulled into the parking lot of a grocery store and took a break. It also allowed me to grab some breakfast that consisted of more than granola bars.


I spent about 15 miles riding through the depths of the New Jersey pine barrens this morning. The area is nothing but pine trees and the roads were gravel. This was the first experience I had with gravel on this trip. (Little did I know, I would be an absolute expert on gravel roads by the time I reached The Pacific Ocean).


A typical rest/hydration break while touring...

This picture shows my comfy little camp chair and my solar charger that I use to keep my battery pack charged. This solar charger served me well the entire way across the continent.


I made it to a friend's house in Bordentown by noon and was able to get a shower and some lunch. So far, so good!




 

May 1

Mileage: 0 miles

Odometer End: 1860.5 miles

Bordentown, NJ




Hanging out in Bordentown, NJ.

I took the day off in Bordentown so that I could hang out with my friend. He gave me a lift up to a bike shop so that I could pick up a couple of spare inner tubes. I had already had 2 flat tires and had used my spares for the repairs.







 





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