Author Topic: NYC to Baltimore?  (Read 1760 times)

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Offline Eappleton

NYC to Baltimore?
« on: August 12, 2012, 09:15:14 am »
Hi,

My wife and I are planning a bike trip from NYC to Baltimore in late September. Our plan is to take a ferry to Sandy Hook, then ride to Cape May, take a ferry to Ocean City, then ride to Baltimore. I'm wondering if you have a recommendation for a route in NJ, including turn sheets.

Thanks in advance for your help,
Eric

Offline indyfabz

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2012, 07:05:31 am »
Ferry from Cape May to Ocean City (assume you mean Ocean City, MD, not Ocean City, NJ)? Unless there is a new ferry service I haven't heard about, the ferry from Cape May goes to Lewes, DE.

For the southern portion of NJ, at that time of year (and unless you need camping) it would be nice to ride through the shore towns of Ocean City, Strathmere, Sea Isle City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, and Wildwood on the way to Cape May. All those towns except Strathmere and Stone Harbor have boardwalks that allow you to ride with along side the beach. The Wildwood board walk in particularly interesting if you have never seen it. Very carnival-like. Crossing between islands you usually see a lot of wading birds and sometimes ospreys.

You can enter Ocean City from Somers Point by taking NJ 152 east until the first traffic light then making a right towards the big bridge that takes you into the north end of town. I can draw you a map taking you down to Cape May if you would like.

If you need camping, you will have to look inland along the U.S. 9 corridor for the closest campgrounds. Be advised that U.S. 9 now combines with the Garden State Parkway to cross the Great Egg Inlet and thus is not open to bikes for that stretch. (There is an old brigde that you used to be able to pedal across but it is closed due to structural problems.) Unless you ride down through Ocean City, NJ and cross into Strathmere via Corson's Inlet (you can see all these places on Google Maps), you will have to go way inland to May's Landing in order to cross the Great Egg River before you can continue south. The reconstruction on NJ 52 between U.S. 9 and Ocean City, NJ was recently completed. The old causeway and bridge were very narrow and off limits to bikes. I cannot tell you if bikes are permitted on the new facilities. Even if they are, that route in the main way into town. I would take the 152 route noted above.

Note that there is a huge (around 7,000 people) MS fundrasing ride that ends in Ocean City, NJ on September 29th. Accomodations in the town will be at a premium. N. Wildwood/Wildwood/Wildwood Crest have the most accomodations out of the shore towns mentioned

Offline ezdoesit

Remember it's mind over matter
you don't mind it doesn't matter

Ride more Drive Less

Offline litespeed

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2012, 07:51:25 pm »
Indyfabz's advice is sound but I have a couple of additions. The old bridge over Great Egg is closed but the last time I went that way I ignored the closing and went on over it. I figured if people were fishing off it I could bicycle it. Of course it may be impassable by now.

The real problem for the last few years has been the new bridge construction over the Mullica River near New Gretna. If it is done by now you can just scoot along the shoulder of the combined Garden State Parkway/US9 for the 2 1/2 miles. I used to do this many years ago. Both times I was passed by police cars who ignored me. If the construction is still going on (ask in New Gretna) you will have to detour west through Egg Harbor City and Mays Landing. This stretch is almost eerily devoid of traffic and people.

Offline indyfabz

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2012, 06:39:55 am »
Indyfabz's advice is sound but I have a couple of additions. The old bridge over Great Egg is closed but the last time I went that way I ignored the closing and went on over it. I figured if people were fishing off it I could bicycle it. Of course it may be impassable by now.

Unless something has changed in the last few months, the bridge is impassible. I was down that way this spring. The draw is maintained in the open position to avoid the need for a tender. The prevailing plan being considered is to dismantle most of the bridge, leaving some portions as fishing piers.

Note that if you find yourself in Ocean City, MD, you will need to get across the Chesapeake Bay to get to Baltimore unless you ride way north again.

Offline Joshie2b

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2012, 07:58:42 pm »
Dear Eric,

I have done the ride from sandy hook to cape may ferry several times, and also from Baltimore to Lewes, DE, the other end of the ferry.

For the NJ side, you have lot of options but the coastal route is nice. Stick right be the coast through seaside heights; then cut over to toms river, take route 9 through Tuckerton. You then must cut inland to lower bank, where you can cross the river. Then you have a choice; inland route straight down, or take the route 30 bridge to Atlantic city and go down the coast to wildwood before cutting across to the ferry.

A great resource is njbikemap.com.  The guy has rated virtually very road in NJ.

Once in DE, you have two choices: head pretty much due west on back roads, then take a car service across the bay bridge (they'll shuttle you over for around $15, the number used to be on the MD state transportation page but if you search for taxi bay bridge you should find it.).  From there there is a great bike path heading northwest to BWI, and google maps gets you into Baltimore using a pretty good route from there.

The alternative is to head northwest from Lewes, through Chesapeake city, md, over the canal and then north to Elkton, west on 40 to perryville rd, then west again past port deposit to the conowingo dam, which lets you cross the Susquehanna on a bike. Route 1 south will get you to baltimore fine, or you can take some backroads as you get closer to the city. From the north, falls road gets you downtown pretty good.

Ive got most of these routes mapped out but I'm on my iPad right now; let me know what you'd like and I can get them to you (can one post PDFs tmthese fora?)

Offline litespeed

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2012, 09:31:02 am »
[quote author=Joshie2b

"For the NJ side, you have lot of options but the coastal route is nice. Stick right be the coast through seaside heights; then cut over to toms river, take route 9 through Tuckerton. You then must cut inland to lower bank, where you can cross the river. Then you have a choice; inland route straight down, or take the route 30 bridge to Atlantic city and go down the coast to wildwood before cutting across to the ferry."

Cutting over to Toms River from Seaside Heights requires going over the route 37 bridge. This one, like many bridges along the NJ shore, is forbidden to bicycles. You are expected to walk along the narrow sidewalk. I have ridden over some of the short bridges anyway but this one is a problem. As I recall it had no shoulder and was mighty long - some 3 miles - and heavily trafficked. I'm not familiar with the route 30 bridge to Atlantic City and would really like to hear if it is passable on a bicycle.

As Joshie said, you can cut inland at Tuckerton but you can also go through New Gretna before cutting inland to the bridge at Lower Bank or Green Bank.


Offline JayH

Re: NYC to Baltimore?
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2012, 08:30:42 am »
I believe there was also a MS tour that used to ride (over 2 days) from Sandy Hook to Cape May and back so poking around the MS folks might be an option...

Jay