66 miles with Major Variation D to visit Kinderhook + Chatham.
Hill climbs: Total uphill climbing is about 2600 vertical feet. Longest climb is about 150 vertical feet, including 75 feet at over 8% grade. Also several 100-foot climbs, two of which have 75-foot sections at around 7.5% -- the rest are mostly under 6% grade. (see Measuring Hilliness)
Traffic: The main route has about 9 miles of high-speed and/or high-volume motor vehicle traffic. Also about 6 miles of moderate traffic. The rest of the road segments often have low traffic.
The reason for so much on high-speed and/or high-volume roads is because that's the only way to get to some of the interesting sights along the Hudson River. Most of these roads had reasonable shoulders as of September 2006, and with our skills and risk profile we have felt comfortable riding on them a number of times over the years.
And it might have been a longer time since some of the Variations of the route were last checked by us. Some roads and intersections might be different since then, or closed -- so be prepared to find alternatives -- a good reason to carry a detailed map. Other people may have more recent experiences with parts of the route which could help prepare: see the Reports page linked below.
more . . .
From the South or North: Take the Taconic State Parkway to the Route 82 exit (a little north of Lake Taghkanic State Park), then West on Route 82 a short ways.
From the West and New York Thruway: Take Thruway Exit 21 at Catskill. Take Route 23 East across the Rip Van Winkle Bridge (toll). After the bridge, bear left to stay on Route 23 East and go about 5 miles. When Route 23 turns Left, continue onto Route 82 and go southeast for almost another 5 miles, and West Taghkanic is just before the Taconic Parkway. (Or just park in Catskill and bicycle across the Rip Van Winkle Bridge to join the route at mile 11.7).
Alternate starts: Hudson, Claverack, Catskill.
Livingston Orchards and Farms -- Out-bound: from the West end of Schneider Rd, turn L on Rt 9 South [HH], then L on CC Rt 19 to start of route. In-bound: In variation A of "Livingston", CC Rt 14 is part of this route.
Grand Tour of Columbia County -- Out-bound: CC Rt 14 is part of both routes. In-bound: Use the Southeast Columbia finish; or when on Rt 82 near the end of "Grand Tour", continue S to this route's Finish point.
Wandering Northwest Columbia -- Out-bound: Continue on CC Rt 22 East, then turn L on Letter S Rd. In-bound: From the "Northwest" finish in Ghent, continue South on Rt 66, L onto CC Rt 9, T-R on Rt 217 West.
Farms and Hills of Southeast Columbia -- both routes share the same Start point.