Welcome to my fundraising page for the 10th annual Will Bike 4 Food! This is a fun cyling event that helps feed our neighbors in need and end hunger in western Mass. by raising funds and awareness for The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Every $1 can provide 4 meals for a local family who needs them most. This year of Covid-19 your donation is even more important than ever. Contributions of any size to my efforts are appreciated. 100% of your donation will go to support The Food Bank's mission (unavoidable credit card fees notwithstanding). All donations are tax deductible. Thank you!
READ HERE FOR WB4F UPDATES FROM VINCE!
DAY 1: Sep 1.......Beautiful weather for riding for the kick-off of WB4F #10. For my initial ride decided to stay close to home so I spent most of my time in neighboring Longmeadow. Nice road surfaces, little traffic in late morning, no big hills (bonus!). Saw local school faculty parking lots full, and even one school with students in attendance. Kudos to all my former colleagues in education - you are MOST DEFINITELY ESSENTIAL!!!
Mileage today - 16.7
Thanks to all of you who have already made a donation - your generosity is much appreciated.
DAY 2: Sep 5.......After a short hiatus back on the road today. Again beautiful weather but on the cool side at 7:00 am, so the sun is welcome for warming up. Traveled down Route 83 into Somers, then a short ways into Enfield along Route 190, and then back home via Shaker Road. Very smooth road up to the state line (CT did some paving not long ago). Saw some Wild Turkeys at the local prison (they are pretty regular there).
Mileage today - 17.9 TOTAL - 34.6
DAY 3: Sep 6.......Cloud cover today, not as cool, another 7:00 am start (on Sunday morning barely any traffic). My route today took me east down Hampden Road, then back to East Longmeadow via Allen Road. Did some laps around Birchland Middle School, then rode to the local bike store and back along the Redstone Rail Trail. Did see a Great Blue Heron flying in the distance, and two Green Herons sitting in a tree along the drainage canal next to the playing fields in town. Sun finally broke through as I finished my ride!
Mileage today - 16.8 TOTAL - 51.4
DAY 4: Sep 9 ...... Hopped on the saddle and set out as soon as the sun appeared, about 11:15. Went along one of my favorite routes through Wilbraham and Hampden. Along Stony Hill Road I heard a Red-breasted Nuthatch. These small birds have been very noticeable just about everywhere I've been in September....maybe an irruption year, so keep an eye on your feeders this fall and winter.
Mileage today - 16.2 TOTAL - 67.6
DAY 5: Sep 11......Today's route took me through sleepy farmland in Enfield; a red-tailed hawk looked down at me from the top of a barn. Despite a strong head wind on the way back, this was a tranquil ride ... especially compared to the seven climbs in Stage 13 of the Tour de France. Peter Sagan, Julian Alaphillipe, and Sam Bennett are amazing cyclists!
Mileage today - 16.8 TOTAL - 84.4
DAY 6: Sep 12......Toured more farmland today, this time down in Somers. Beautiful, fall-like weather made for a very pleasant ride. I was inspired by Cathy to go up Pease Road in town, a short but steep climb. Thank heaven for low gears!! Reached the century mark in mileage.....only 150 left to go!!
Mileage today - 16.1 TOTAL - 100.5
DAY 7: Sep 14......In recognition of another beautiful day, Cathy and I headed over to Robinson State Park (in Agawam). We'd been there for a lovely walk before; today we discovered that biking up the steep inclines took a lot more effort. We worked hard to earn those 6.7 miles!
After getting back home, a quick loop through Hampden and back added 11.3 more miles. Strong head wind coming back up Route 83 was exhilarating!
Mileage today - 18.0 TOTAL - 118.5
DAY 8: Sep 16.......Short ride today through Longmeadow; Cathy and I spent the morning hiking through October Mountain State Forest. Beautiful day in Western Mass!!
MADE IT TO THE HALFWAY POINT IN MILEAGE TODAY!!!!!
Mileage today - 11.6 TOTAL - 130.1
DAY 9: Sep 17.......Today Cathy and I returned to one of our favorite locations: an interstate rail trail that begins in MA and ends in CT. We began in Westfield, MA, rode for four miles into Southwick, MA, another seven miles before crossing the state line into Suffield, CT, and then stopped in East Granby before reversing direction and heading back. Someday we hope to follow the trail all the way to New Haven, but today we were quite happy with our new high daily total of 23 miles.
Mileage today - 23.0 TOTAL - 153.1
DAY 10: Sep 20.......Another ride around town today.....quite windy and cool. Two-thirds into the month, I am approximately two-thirds to my mileage goal.
Mileage today - 16.2 TOTAL - 169.3
DAY 11: Sep 21.......Out in the Berkshires today for one of our favorite trails: The Ashuwilticook Rail Trail! Turns out the last day of summer can be quite cool, so Cathy and I kept up a pretty good speed ... until we discovered that the northern half of the trail closed due to construction. Somewhat disappointing, but we made up for it by stopping by Pontoosuc Lake and grabbing another year bird: the Snow Goose.
Mileage today - 12.4 TOTAL - 181.7
DAY 12: Sep 22.....Another cool day, and VERY windy. Today's route went through East Longmeadow, Hampden, Somers, Enfield, and back to EL. Hardest part was going north on Shaker Road....if you stopped pedaling the wind just brought you to a complete halt!! But a good ride all in all.....hit the 200 milestone for the month.
Mileage today - 21.3 TOTAL - 203
DAY 13: Sep 25.....Today I traveled north to Hatfield for my ride, and rode along some of the same roads marked for the 25-mile route I have done for the past five years. I shortened my ride by excluding the climb over Mt. Sugarloaf (that's a knee-popper!!) and stayed in the farmlands. The air was dry and dusty, and the foliage looked faded, evidence of the drought we've been having in western Massachusetts. Some rain is predicted for next week and will be much appreciated.
Mileage today - 20.3 TOTAL - 223.3
DAY 14: Sep 26......With the threat of showers I headed out earlier today under an overcast sky. Winding my way around Longmeadow I spotted several crows mobbing a Cooper's Hawk in the high school parking lot. It's "kek kek kek" call told me it was not happy with the crows. Today was my penultimate of riding - tomorrow will achieve my mileage goal!!!!
Mileage today - 15.0 TOTAL - 238.3
DAY 15: Sep 27......This was to be the day for the WB4F fundraising ride that begins at the Lions Pavilion in Hatfield. Hopefully next year we will all be back there as usual, getting our riding numbers pinned on our jerseys, feeling the excitement of a mass start, and knowing every rider there is helping to relieve food insecurity for our neighbors in western Massachusetts.
On this ultimate day for riding I toured around East Longmeadow again, trying some new permutations of old routes. I added 17.5 miles, which brings my total to 255.8 miles!!!!!
Ride with me this September! Register at willbike4food.org