I spent the night in Wildwood, New Jersey. The motel wasn't the best, but it was a place to sleep. There weren't any campgrounds close and it was getting late and from what I could see, getting out of the city I was in wasn't going to help. The good thing was having a small restaurant within walking distance where I could eat and get back before the sun went down. This wasn't the best part of town and I didn't relish being out after dark. It was representative of the cities in the area which I planned on avoiding if at all possible.
The next morning I couldn't find US 30 so I had to find alternate roads around Trenton and Newark. I'm not a fan of cities and those in New Jersey are not easy to get through. I ended up on SR 31 which was a lovely ride through farm country and small towns. I took 57 south so I could get to the beginning of 519. This was one of those scenic roads you take your time riding. I when through the Scotts mountains and over Jenny Jump Mountain, making it to Hope for the night. I needed a service done on my bike and there was a dealer here, so I would be spending the night.
Kevin, the service manager at Tramontin, HD directed me to the Inn at Millrace Pond. It was once a grist mill and they used the original building and the focal points in the various rooms. To get to the tavern on the bottom floor, you have to cross over the stream which still runs through the building. Not only were the rooms nicely decorated in antiques, but the food was good with great service. The dealership actually came and picked up my bike from the Inn, they came and got me the next day when my bike was finished. Understand, all of this is set in one of the oldest towns in the area. It is so small, the only traffic signal is a blinking red light at the crossroads in the center of town. If you want to stay there (I recommend at least a night) the inn is to the right as you are going north on 519 and enter the town. HD dealership is straight ahead on 521 just past I-84. ( http://www.innatmillracepond.com )
From Hope I headed north on 521. I skirted the Kittatinny mountains. The road is one of the twisties which keep you alert. I stopped at Swartswood state park. The southern end of the lake is full of lilly pads and ducks. It was a nice stop where I ate a sandwich and enjoyed the quiet with the birds chirping in the trees.
( https://www.stateparks.com/swartswood.html )
Back on the road, by late afternoon, I was on route 6 in NY state. It's a rural road with a lot of curves, hills and stop light. I missed a turn and ended up on 9W which goes through West Point base. It was a minor detour where you get to see more than expected.
Back on 6, I made my way over Bear Mountain. This road isn't for the faint of heart as it is narrow and full of 25-35 mph curves. I pulled over at the scenic stop at the base of the mountain to rest where I was able to get pictures of the Hudson River which I crossed using the toll bridge.
Being the adventurous type, I decided to take the Taconic Parkway. Traffic is mostly passenger vehicles going as fast as they can with no concern for what lane they are in or who was in the other lane. It made for some harrowing turns when I had a wall to my right and nowhere to go as they other drivers took my lane. It wasn't only me. It didn't make a difference as theses wanna be drivers raced forward as to who or what was in the lane beside them. It was a great example of how lousy and inconsiderate the drivers are in NY. I dealt with the retirees in Florida but once I dealt with them in their home state, they were worse yet. I was expecting the Parkway a nice leisurely drive, not a race.
I ended up getting off at Hopewell Junction/Wappingers, NY for the night. I wasn't sure when, or if, there would be another place to stay. I'm glad I didn't attempt to make it to the campground in Copake, NY as it was still a long way away. My plan is to stay there while I ride through the western Connecticut roads before going into Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Going with the flow and taking my time has paid off and so far, my trip has been one of enjoyable rides through country most never take the time to see.
B.A Mealer is an author and a traveler. This is a person who refuses to grow up and get old.