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The Shining Sea Bike Path is a ten mile trail stretching from Falmouth to Woods Hole, Massachusetts. The Falmouth end of the trail takes the rider on a quiet journey along the marshlands of Buzzards Bay on a flat rail to trail multi use path. Lots of red winged blackbirds were perching on very delicate marsh grass that look much to dainty to even hold the weight of a small bird. The crow were also out in numbers today along with the usual, swan, geese and ducks. The scenery gradually changes to a more densely populated area where riders are encouraged to dismount and walk across the roads that cross the path. That may be necessary during the tourist season when everyone in a car is in a hurry to get to the next red light. Off season however there is very little, and also, bicycle friendly traffic.
The town of Woods Hole during the summer is a madhouse with heavy traffic both on the roads and on foot. There is a small draw bridge in the center of town that opens on command for mostly pleasure and small commercial fishing boats. Most being lobster boats. When the bridge rises for boats to pass, those on bicycles are encouraged to get to the front of the line. No traffic is allowed on the bridge until all the bikes from both directions have completely crossed the 20 foot wide span. The bridge tender is always a man in his 60’s or 70’s, and most likely a retired Woods Hole Oceanographic employee who no one really should mess with. Woods Hole is the home port of Robert Ballard of Titanic fame. The ship RV Knorr was also in port.
The research vessel Knorr is owned by the U.S. Navy and operated by WHOI for the ocean research community. Knorr is best known as the ship that supported a team of WHOI and French researchers in 1985 as they discovered the wreck of the RMS Titanic.
Also riding the path was a group of senior cyclists on their first ride of the season. Many of them will be traveling to Holland next month for a week long bike and barge tour. Walkers with dogs were many and most had two four legged friends for company. The path was also undergoing spring cleaning by crews removing dangerous dead trees and branches overlooking the MUP.