South-Central Pennsylvania Odyssey


Yesterday, I tried “Ride 13” from the book Great Roads, Great Rides. I recently acquired this guide to scenic and interesting routes in the Mid-Atlantic area, and so far two out of two rides have been most enjoyable. If anyone is interested, it’s available at (I don’t have any connection with the book or its authors–I just think it’s a good source of info.)

Ride 13 is entitled “Apple and Peach Orchards of South-Central Pennsylvania.” I didn’t actually see that many orchards, but the route winds through lots of PA state parks, mountains, and forests. Definitely scenic, and a lot of fun.

Here are a few pictures just to whet your appetite:

A beautiful, tranquil setting, but the amenities appear to leave a bit to be desired…

The faithful CS next to a valley meadow.

A further look at the valley:

The furnace at Pine Grove Furnace State Park:

A pretty stream in the same park (near the camping area):

Man, one good sneeze would almost certainly bring this place down!

This little fellow wasn’t specifically mentioned in the Ride 13 description…

The ride up to Waggoner’s Gap was one of several fun climbs–and this is the start of the ride down.

Technically, this interesting arched barn wasn’t on the Ride 13 route. I got tired of some slow traffic on 97 approaching Westminster (the only such section with much traffic, incidentally), so I took Blacks School House Road and Stone Road instead.

All told, it was a 260-mile roundtrip from Catonsville. A long trip, by my standards, and a very hot day. But lots o’ fun and no close calls (other than one brief rear-wheel slip on a nice hot “tar snake”–no harm, no foul). The CS got nearly 65 mpg and turned 8,000 miles. Still no problems of any sort to date (knock on wood).

Exactly the sort of trip that, to me, is what motorcycling is all about.

Rick F.


Written by Rick

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