King Song 16S ride report for the Delaware River Towpath on Saturday 22nd September.
I parked in the lot on Black Rock Road between Morrisville and Yardley and proceeded north on the west side of the Delaware River through Yardley, under 295, through Washington Crossing, up towards New Hope where the trail just sort of ends without a lot of warning. One finds one’s self on River Road then S. Main Street, but not for very long. I blended in with traffic doing 15 mph and headed north to E. Bridge Street and rode east across to Lambertville.
The bridge was signed “no bicycles” and “motorized vehicles only.”. As there was no traffic behind me, I decided to see if I could euc my way across. This is challenging because my wheel is a little narrow, and the steel bridge has vertical and horizontal grooves in it that were rather slippery.. the grooves try to grab the wheel which makes balancing very hard.. the temptation is to over correct. I made it across without incident, but one of NJ’s traffic guys stopped me and said “YOU CAN’T RIDE THAT ON THERE”. I said “OK.. I won’t do it again, but is there a sign about that?”. He said “The sign says no bicycles”. I said “I am not a bicycle.”. He said “The sign says MOTORIZED VEHICLES ONLY.” I said “I have a motor.” He gave me a look. I said “Officer, if you don’t want me on the bridge, I definitely won’t ride on the bridge again, but I did want to establish that there are no signs currently prohibiting a motorized single wheeled vehicle... but I will be courteous and respectful of your wishes. Have a great day!” And I shook his hand and gave him a a smile. He smiled back... and I hung a left onto the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park Trail. I proceed to ride under 202 and all the way up to Stockton, NJ on the east side of the river.
At this point I noticed Darknessbot said I had 48% power left, which was not great, since I stil had to cross the river and get back to my vehicle. I was about 16.7 miles into the trip at this point. I crossed the river again at Bridge Street towards the Centre Bridge Inn on the PA side where I found a sign that the towpath trail was CLOSED for construction and to be careful because River Road (one’s only option) was dangerous, had fast moving traffic, and had no shoulders. Great.
So I brought my euc out to the road and walked it for maybe 0.5 miles until a pod of bikers passed me. I hopped on my euc, caught up with the pod, and drafted the pod south on River Road (32) until I got to Canal Park where I was able to take a bridge across the canal and get back onto the tow path, which I rode south under 202 and down to Bridge Street. Then a right put me on S. Main in New Hope, where going 5 to 10 mph, I was going the same speed as other traffic. I missed the entrance back on to the towpath trail and went farther south on River Road, which was a little dangerous with traffic passing me. I found the next bridge over the canal at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve... jumped onto the trail there... and rode south back to my car.
Darknessbot told me I hit 0.0 miles remaining about 0.7 miles away from my car whereas the King Song app told me I had maybe 16% power left. I nursed her in at lower than usual speed and skipped a planned rest stop to preserve battery life and to save time in case I needed to walk the last half mile or so. A quick stretch of the legs, and I was in the car and headed home with 34.0 miles logged in a little over 4 hours.
Thoughts on the trail and route for others: PROBABLY the trail has a “no motorized vehicles” sign, though I didn’t see any on the PA side. The NJ side definitely did have such a sign... or at least one that I saw. But almost every walker and bicyclist I passed or saw said “cool” or “neato” or gave me a smile. I think eucs are too new to be disliked, and the bicyclists count us one of their own unlike a gasoline powered dirt bike. I would say as long as you ride respectfully both the PA and NJ walkers and bikers will tolerate us.
That being said, the trail is packed gravel mostly, loose gravel in others, paved in a few. There are low bridges that require you to bow deeply to get under them or to jump off and walk your euc across a road. There is one 2” deep ford that I decided to try and was successfully able to cross without shorting out my euc or falling off. Not sure I would do even a 3” deep ford. The path is VERY narrow in places, so I kept my speed very low in such areas for safety.
If anybody has any questions or thoughts, please post them here, and I will try to reply. Just please ride respectfully on these trails, and the bicyclists and walkers should be happy with us.