This summer I'll be retracing the last 3 weeks of the Coast to Coast ride in 2002. I had a fantastic time in 2002 and expect the same this year as well. Below are daily collections of my experiences with photos. Hope you enjoy reading the blog. - Brian Cox

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Week 3, Day 6 (Aug 18) Durham, NH to Gloucester, MA

Final day and then it’s over. Last night, about 3AM, I heard the rain hitting my tent, stop, then hit my tent about 60 seconds later, then the whole cycle repeated. It took me awhile, but I realized that it wasn't rain, but the lawn sprinklers!! Somehow even with the repeating noise I was able to fall back asleep.

The morning was overcast as I rolled up my tent and headed downtown to the University of New Hampshire cafeteria. That’s also where we had dinner last night as well. In the years since I went to college, cafeterias have changed!! The cafeteria is like a mall food court without the cash registers. As we were finishing breakfast, it started to drizzle outside. I tried to put off leaving as long as possible, but finally left as the drizzle slowed and stopped.

The ride was going to be only 62 miles today. Cycle America requested that we try to reach the Gloucester by 1PM or so. Once we all arrive at the Gloucester High School, all the riders are to head to the ocean en mass and all dunk our front tires into the Atlantic Ocean. As the Coast to Coast riders left Everett Washington 9 weeks ago, they dunked their rear tires in the Pacific Ocean and dunking the front tires will complete the ocean to ocean journey.

I had my eyes on the first stop of the day at the 15 mile mark. In the town of Exeter, NH there was a coffee house that was having a grand opening today. Would it be great if we could make their first day, a busy day?

Somewhere between the start and the coffee house I ran into Holly and Dennis. We all stopped at the D2 Coffee House a bit before 9 and were on the road before 9:30. Both the coffee and pastry were well worth the stop.

Before too long, we cross the state line into Massachusetts. We came into the picnic stop at 11 AM and had a bite to eat. I may not be remembering correctly, but I think that they were serving shrimp quesadillas.

It was just over 20 miles to Gloucester as we left the picnic stop. Just long enough to squeeze in on more stop. But before we made our stop, we had made a right hand turn onto a busy road, I think it was SR133, as shortly we were overtaken by a police escorted pack of women motorcyclists. I think that there was a vehicle with the name of the club on it, but I don’t remember it. I do remember cycle after cycle where either the cycle was pink, the rider wore pink or both. We managed to get our last stop in at Marty’s Donut Land. They were supposed to be closed, but hadn't lock the door when we entered. I didn't matter much, they still had coffee and home style donuts. It was real nice chatting with them, talking about where we were coming from and going to as well where we lived. Holly and Dennis from the San Luis Obispo area of California and me from the Pasadena area of California.

With only about 10 more miles to go, the rest of the ride went very quickly. Dropping down along the busy coastal roads with marinas, restaurants and wetlands lining the roads. We were met at the entrance to the high school with cheering spectators. We felt as if we had just won some race or something.

After the last of the riders arrived, we all headed to the ocean for the tire dunking and photos. It was a great way of wrapping up a trip.

Cycle America had also arranged for a evening harbor cruise for the group, so that we could all have a couple of drinks together a say our final goodbyes.

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