The D&R Canal towpath has reopened — yay! And it’s finally sunny and warm! Time for a longish but easy bike ride.
So on Saturday we headed to the blue water tower along the Delaware River in Morrisville, Pa., the same place we met friends last year for a “weird beer” ride to Neshaminy Creek. Only this time we were headed north, chatting with a friend as we went (with social distance, of course) along the Delaware & Lehigh Trail.
Our first stop: this odd historical marker at the edge of Morrisville. It’s taller than me and commemorates the nearby spot where William Penn bought the first section of Pennsylvania.
Then we dropped back down to the D&L Trail, cycling past Yardley and then under the interstate bridge under construction. It will include a bicycle and pedestrian path so of course we had to stop and check out the access ramp that’s only partially built:
Then on to Washington Crossing, the spot where George Washington and a ragtag army crossed the Delaware in bad weather on Christmas night in 1776 to surprise and defeat the British in Trenton the next morning. Decision time for us too: cross over to NJ or keep going to New Hope and the next bridge?
We decided to keep going. Hey, it would let us close a gap and say we have now ridden the D&L from Bristol to Bethlehem. And if the trail got too busy, we could always switch to River Road.
While plenty of people were enjoying the trail, it thankfully never got too much, I’d slow down waiting to pass a family, and I’d pull up my face mask as needed. We all would to try to circle around puddles sometimes as wide as the path. True, that didn’t always work and there was little choice but to go through some reddish mud. Oh well. It dries. Clothes can go straight into the washing machine.
Traffic was backed up a bit in New Hope but nothing like it would normally be. The sidewalk looked pretty empty. And it’s gorgeous weather! You couldn’t help but think about the businesses forced to shutter because of coronavirus and how many sales have been lost.
Then we walked our bikes across the bridge to New Jersey and the D&R Canal towpath. It’s a state park, and the governor had just decreed that it could reopen. To our surprise, it was less crowded than the Pennsylvania side. The trail is also wider. Add on a tailwind, and we just cruised south. Past New Jersey’s Washington Crossing, under the interstate bridge (didn’t spot the access ramp on this side), past the Trenton Country Club. Eventually we got to this sign:
No idea what greenway this refers to, and we opted for the D&R route. It was only a few blocks — watch out for the glass! — until it dumped us on the intersection with Hannover Street. In maybe a minute we were turning right onto Calhoun Street and making our way to the Calhoun Street Bridge, back across the Delaware and to our cars.