Vermont Cheese Tour Day Three
As feared, the looming clouds brought thunder, then they brought lightening, and finally, begrudgingly came the lashings of rain. Experiencing a thunderstorm from inside a tent is quite thrilling, although thankfully this night’s show was one minus the wind. Wind and tents just don’t mix well.
The storm fully started at 4 am (alarm call!), and stopped at about 7 am (actual alarm call!). So this meant time to move - start the coffee, and break down camp. In less than an hour I was out on the road, riding along with my river companion for the last time.
Sprinkling rain introduced itself to the mix, which, given the warm temperature was actually quite pleasant. Like a mobile shower, with passengers in cars taking a good look.
I was heading north, and my first stop was at Springbrook Farm. An organisation is always admired as they value education, and help for children from the city, as much as making their cheese. And their cheese is wonderful. Since I was coming from the south, and coming on a bike, my routing software clearly wanted to make my trip interesting. This means more gravel roads, and more 15% gradients, as well as a road with a sign declaring it ‘grade 4’ use at your own risk.
But, to be fair, there was less traffic, and the scenery was stunning. The night of the storm I was actually pretty close to Mt Ascutney, and even riding early in the morning I was squished between my friend the river and the mountain. Some of the crazy climbs I ended up doing gave me some sensational views of the mountain.
Snippets of the area reminded me of my trip to Switzerland last year, where from rolling hills on one wide of a valley, you could see the Alps staring back. Ascutney was no Alps, but the angry, beautiful glare was the same.