Basil and I finally got a chance to cycle on the West Side Greenway, but not without a false start. We started at 181st Street, and headed toward the river. See the bicycle on this sign? And the arrow under it?
It leads to a dead end. Basil and I turned around, and went the opposite way. A block or two up, we found the pedestrian/cycle crossing above Riverside Drive, and were on our way.
We soon passed under the George Washington Bridge.
We quickly left the bridge behind.
Manhattan on the left, New Jersey on the right.
At 132nd street, Basil posed in front of the most wonderful grocery store of all: Fairway.
We passed this pretty little marina.
Is it art if it also serves another purpose? Steel girders have a beauty all their own.
These structures made me think of barns. Maybe it’s the circle at the roof peak, or the red trim. I think they are a sanitation station.
We passed the USS Intrepid at 46th Street
and, oddly, these horses, not long after. Why would officers be on horses in this traffic-heavy area? It’s another New York mystery.
We discovered where the “Violation Tow Service” is, at 38th, but,happily, this isn’t something a bicycle rider needs to know.
Originally, I’d planned to ride down to the WTC, and take the subway back, but the day was so beautiful that I decided to cycle back. Since I wasn’t sure how much time I’d have, we only rode south as far as 34th Street or so, at which point we turned around.
This behemoth is at Riverside Park South. Was it once used to unload cargo?
It’s easy to forget how close traffic is, since it’s not terribly obvious for most of the ride. This spot looked quite bucolic until a bus flew by above Basil.
Stone arch, 104th Street.
And steel arches, at 135th.
Soon we spied the George Washington Bridge again.
We got closer.
It’s really just a huge erector set!
Tucked under the bridge is an adorable Little Red Lighthouse, once immortalized in a children’s book. Literature may have saved this lighthouse from extinction. Never doubt the power of the written word!
New Jersey, with tree, just before the bridge.
Under the bridge. Basil’s posing downhill here, but we were on the way up, by foot.
I was so disappointed that I couldn’t manage this incline . . . but as I was photographing Basil, an athletic type came by on a drop bar racer, at about 2 miles an hour. (I felt better when I saw how he was struggling.) However, he did make it up all the way on his wheels. He traversed the slope — zig-zagging his way across the bath in nearly horizontal lines up to even out the climb. Brilliant!
Once we passed the bridge, the incline wasn’t as steep.
The trail passed through this stone arch.
Then it curved around and we looked back at the bridge.
Basil takes a break.
Suddenly, it’s obvious that you’re back in the city.
Here we are: Up the ramp, over the bridge, and we’re on our way home.
By foot, I’m afraid, since I’m not cycling in Washington Heights.
The Greenway, though, in winter? It’s perfect!
1/7/2013 – Edited to add photo of ramp, which I somehow left out (?!).