This requested tour was designed to start in Northampton Massachusetts and ended in Rockland Maine. Other persons using these routes will need to find alternative overnight locations.The route takes a mix of local roads and highways to Westford and Newburyport MA, then follows generally follows the New Hampshire and Maine coast to Rockland. Roads are selected to optimize safety and scenic value, based on my own experience where available, club rides and other available sources. In some cases highways with shoulders are chosen rather than use a mix of local roads with excessive turns. Traffic is unavoidable and road conditions are unpredictable. Make sure to carry maps of the area so that you can take alternative routes where necessary.The routes described are recommendations based on available resources. No guarantees are made about the accuracy of the information or safety of participants riding bicycles on the roads. Persons using this information take full responsibility for their own safety.
|Day 1: Northampton to Barre MA 46 miles This ride begins on the Norwottuck Rail Trail to Amherst, the circles south and east of Quabbin Reservoir, ending at the Jenkins Inn and Restaurant at the corner of Rt. 32 and Rt. 122 in the quaint village of Barre.
|Day 2: Barre MA to Westford MA, 47 miles There are some fairly populated areas along this course with many options for a route. The roads selected are primarily taken from local club rides.|
|Day 3: Westford MA to Newburyport MA, 53 miles Today’s ride follows local less roads that are used for several North Shore Cyclists rides. Urban areas are avoided, and the route passes through several state forests. There are many great choices in the area between Groveland and Newburyport. Before Newburyport the route follows several miles along the Merrimack River, goes along a couple of reservoirs, passes through Maudslay State Forest and offers excellent views of historic architecture along High Street. The destination is the Essex Street Inn in the heart of this charming small city.|
|Day 4: Newburyport MA to Ogunquit, ME, 44 miles. This is a popular North Shore Cyclists ride with many miles along the ocean in southern New Hampshire. Take shuttle across river Road Conditions: The route follow Rt. 1A and 1B, with a wide shoulder. Be cautious on the bridge crossing from Seabrook to Hampton– cyclists have fallen on the metal grates. Keep an eye out for people crossing the road in the area around Hampton Beach. The section north of Hampton is especially nice. You can easily miss the one mile path along the section of road at Odiome Point. Scenic views of the ocean on Rt. 1B and a very historic section of Portsmouth as you enter town.
For this portion of today’s ride after crossing the bridge from Portland to Kittery. In general I have tried to avoid more congested coastal road by following inland streets. There are multiple lodging choices in the coastal area. You may wish to continue to Wells which is a few miles north of Ogunquit.
|Day 5: Ogunquit ME to Portland ME, 53 miles The ride from Ogunquit follows a coastal route and passes near the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge at mile 12. There are several miles on the Portland Greenbelt bikeway before crossing Casco Bay into Portland There are multiple hotels at the destination which is near the corner of Commercial and Franklin Streets in Portland.
|Day 6: Portland ME to Damariscotta ME, 57 miles The route today generally follows local roads, crossing Rt. 1 at various points. This is a coastal route, but with few glimpses of the ocean. The route transverses several peninsulas and bays, but following roads along the peninsula coastal towns would greatly increase the distance.
|Day 7: Damariscotta ME to Rockland ME, 38 / 46 miles Today’s ride starts in downtown Damariscotta. We avoid Rt. 1 by crossing the Pemaquid Peninsula to Waldoboro, then cross the Friendship peninsula to Thomaston. The last leg crosses the Owl’s Head Peninsula to Rockland. The ride ends at the Ferry Terminal, 517 Main Street in Rockland Maine. Road conditions: The local roads in this section of Maine rarely have paved shoulders, but traffic is relatively light. Where possible I avoid the primary roads on the peninsulas, using roads that cut across. Be watchful of trucks, especially logging trucks. Rt. 1 options: Newcastle to Thomaston has paved shoulders. The stretch from Thomaston to Rockland is not in good condition.