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Baltimore Bicycle Club “Battlefield Century” ride report(20 posts)

Baltimore Bicycle Club “Battlefield Century” ride reportMB1
Sep 16, 2002 8:42 AM
It had been a year or more since Miss M and I had done a club century it was time to do one. We had heard good things about the Baltimore Bike Club's "Battlefield Century", we have friends in the club and we like the area so we decided to go for it.

A couple of bonuses-it was only $20 for a fully supported century and the forecast was good for Saturday and bad for Sunday. A drawback was that 100 miles was the longest route available-a bit short for us.

What to do? Ride to the ride of course. We started in the dark and saw a beautiful sunrise from the bikes.
Up, up and away.MB1
Sep 16, 2002 8:43 AM
We rode about 15 miles to the start of the ride in Thurmont and were nicely warmed up for the climbing that pretty much started right out of the (very full) parking lot.
South MountainMB1
Sep 16, 2002 8:46 AM
After a bunch of climbing in almost perfect riding weather (calm, overcast and cool) we hit the first rest stop at Gathland State Park site of the Battle of South Mountain (which happened the day before Antietam). The rest stop was nicely stocked and had lots of helpers including some park rangers helping out while we were there.
Sep 16, 2002 8:48 AM
Much to my disappointment the ride didn't go through the actual battlefield in Antietam, we did however pass by the National Cemetery. It would have added 5+ miles to ride through the battlefield so I could understand why they didn't include it. Besides, there wwas still lots of riding to come.

The entrance to the Antietam National Cemetery.
Sep 16, 2002 8:51 AM
Mostly we just rode like we always do-our own pace and tempo-after all we has already ridden 15 miles more than the folks around us and were going to have to ride another 15 after everyone else had finished. Still we occasionally got caught up in the pace lines that were forming before lunch. It was a pretty hilly ride though so things stayed mostly broken up with groups of not much than 4-6 riders and a lot of solos (that is a long way to go by yourself.
Sep 16, 2002 8:56 AM
We have been riding in these mountains all year long. We saw the fruit trees covered with snow in the winter, budding in the spring (smelled great but a lot of bees going about their business) and the green apples in the heat of the summer. We were ready for some of the nice local apples that were in good supply at all the rest stops.

Ahhhh...they were well worth the wait.
The after lunch bunch.MB1
Sep 16, 2002 9:00 AM
Miss M and I have pretty much stopped eating any kind of meal on our long rides. We eat just a few snacks and have lots to drink. That way we can keep riding at a nice steady effort all day long.

Some of the other riders took advantage of the well stocked rest stops to fill up. Oops, there was a lot of climbing after lunch and it was warming up.
Sep 16, 2002 9:02 AM
This ride took in a lot of territory. To hit three battlefields in on day in pretty impressive for a club ride. There is always something new and wonderful to see in the battlefield.

What is this about?
11th Mass Infantry Monument InfoScot_Gore
Sep 16, 2002 6:43 PM
The Gettysburg monument is located on the east side of Emmitsburg Road at the intersection of Sickles Avenue, across from the Rogers House site. The diamond near the top is the badge of the 3rd Corps. The 11th, as part of the second division, wore a white diamond-shaped cloth badge on their caps. Corps badges, instituted in early 1863, enabled officers to determine at a glance what division and corps a regiment was part of. Cemetery Ridge is in the background at the tree-line.

At the top of the monument is an arm holding a sword, evoking the coat of arms displayed on the Massachusetts state seal and the first part of the state motto: Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietum. [By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty].
Great stuff, where did you find that? nmMB1
Sep 17, 2002 5:52 AM
Re-enactors site for the 11th MassScot_Gore
Sep 17, 2002 8:00 AM
I found their site via poping out to a couple of civil war sites I visit and searching 11th Mass Infantry on those sites.

I didn't need to try so hard, just Google it!!!Scot_Gore
Sep 17, 2002 8:15 AM
I don't have all my Civil War resource links at work so I just popped out to Google and searched 11th Mass. Infantry and it was the first hit, so disregard what I said above just go to Google!!!!

Here's the specific reference.

For years I looked at maps of the battlefield, and wondered why anyone would make this bonehead move of sticking the exposed flank out by the peach orchard, where these guys where on that 2nd day (which is the monument location). Then I visited Gettysburg. I stood on the Cemetary ridge line where the units where deployed in the AM and looked out toward the peach orchard and it's little rise and fencelines and found myself thinking "That looks like good ground". Just goes to show you, don't make judgements on how things look on paper or in pictures, you have to be there to get a real understanding for the decision other people make. A lesson for the STEM POLICE.

The reward and not.MB1
Sep 16, 2002 9:06 AM
The route from Gettysburg back to Thurmont was fairly open and rolling. Of course there were headwinds all the way back. There were lots of folks wishing for a wheel by then. Lots of them found ours for a while-we just kept spinning away at our usual effort back to the start of the century-we of course still had 15 miles to go (straight into the wind).

We decided that this was one of the better club centuries we had ever done. The route was challenging and scenic, the support was good and there was all the ice cream you can eat at the end of the ride. We skipped the long lines for the ice cream and kept on going after a snack and one last apple (although I did pick up one for the road).

A last bonus for us-the forecast rain for Sunday never happened and we got in a nice long recovery ride around town.
Thanks for the pics, a great ridems
Sep 16, 2002 9:36 AM
I did the Civil War Century both this year and last year. It is a great ride -- I was able to get a few friends to do it this year. Thanks for the pictures -- I can use them to show some friends who did not do the ride what they missed.
Guess I was having a Senior Moment it IS the "Civil War Century". nmMB1
Sep 16, 2002 9:59 AM
Another nice report,JL
Sep 16, 2002 9:15 AM
and now you've made me sorry I didn't make the trip down for that ride. I've thought about going down (from PA) for the last 2 years and the area does look great.

Maybe I can work something out with the family for next years edition.

Thanks again for the report.

Happy riding.

Now you went & made me feel bad.......Len J
Sep 16, 2002 10:18 AM
I did the right thing & spent the weekend with my wife. I did miss this ride (It is one of my favorites) but I did ride 75 by myself early Sat.

Great Pics BTW

Did you see Bill & Cindy at all?

Just a little bonus for me. BTW I spent the weekend with my wifeMB1
Sep 16, 2002 10:42 AM
We saw them at the start just as we were ready to roll out. They were far from ready to ride. They seem to ride about the same speed as we do so we never saw them again.

Yes it was a good ride, sorry you missed it. Better not miss next months rides.
Another Great Report - Did you see any anniversary events?Scot_Gore
Sep 16, 2002 2:11 PM
Today and Tomarrow are the 140 year mark for South Mountain and Antietam (Sharpsburg). NPR had a radio show today, I'm going to check for late night rebroadcasts to see if I can hear it later.

I'll see what I can dig up on your monument question.

There was a very large reinactment going on.MB1
Sep 16, 2002 3:34 PM
Near Hagerstown about 10 miles from where we were riding. I understand they had over 15,000 people taking part plus a lot of spectators.

I'm glad to say we missed them all. Traffic was for the most part very low.