Tag: Fort Rodman

Day 29. Exercise Tiger

Southend Ride 004

Day 29 of 30 Days of Biking was a 17.5 mile loop on a sunny, cool, windy day.

I got the Novara Randonee bike all tuned up for NYC tomorrow and took it out for a shakedown ride.  Everything is working fine and after eight years, I finally decided to adjust my saddle to eliminate the problems the pressure caused.  It took that long because this is primarily my touring bike. During and after every tour I promised myself to adjust the seat. I always forgot about it till the next tour.  After taking it our for a test run last week, I was determined to fix the thing.   You can’t imaging how painful things became trying to relieve myself.  It always turning into a scream.  All is good now.

The ride took me into the city (New Bedford, Ma), around the peninsular and into the old Army Base name Fort Rodman.  I stopped by the military museum and the old Fort within a fort, Fort Taber.

Southend Ride 005
Fort Taber inside the Fort Rodman grounds.

A stiff ocean breeze kept the temps in the low 50’s but the wind was at my back for the return leg of the ride. The beaches were deserted except for a lone man hunting for treasures.

Rain is in the forecast for Sunday’s ride but for now it looks to be off and on showers. We can live with that. My last day of 30 days of biking is very likely to be a lap around the parking lot in Staten Island tomorrow.  Fortunately there is no minimum distance in the rules. Thirty days of riding is a done deal and Sunday begins “The National Bike Challenge“. My hometown of Fairhaven, MA will be out to regain our spot as the winner in the local challenge that we lost last year to our Neighbors in Mattapoisett, MA.  I’m pretty sure we got this.

 

Fort Rodman/Fort Taber in New Bedford, MA

We took the dogs into the city to the Fort Rodman National Park. It’s an old army base that was closed in the mid 60’s.  Fort Taber was built as a defensive installation during the war of 1812.  In the video I say 1912 but Robert E Lee, the design engineer, would have been dead for quite a long time.

This was a chance to try out my new camera and take the dogs for a ride in the car to someplace other than the vet or boarding.

 

FORT RODMAN from John Sullivan on Vimeo.

Sunday Bike Ride With No Destination

If you ride a bike a lot, you know that you see so much more going on around you that passes by unnoticed if your in a car. Today was one of those days that a ride was in order, but a club ride, even one of the most popular local rides, just didn’t fit the bill.

There was no plan to go anywhere in particular.  It was simply a beautiful day to ride a bike. The Phoenix Bike Path in Fairhaven, MA, takes us close to the New Bedford bridge that crosses the Acushnet river into the city. When I got to the span, the bridge was opened to boat traffic.  I usually try to photograph the boat going through the opening.  On this day I looked back to see a wonderful perspective of Fairhaven.  Taking multiple shots playing with the zoom, aperture or shutter speed, gives a photographer a much better chance of getting that really good shot.

Fairhaven Center from the New Bedford bridge.
Fairhaven Center from the New Bedford bridge.

As I progressed into the city, I came across a food festival at Pier 3 and a dog festival at Buttonwood Park. From the park my ride took me on an easy spin to the south end where I stopped and chatted with some friends for a few minutes. At the end of the peninsula the long line at  Clark’s Point Creamery was a big help in my resisting stopping for a dairy treat. Fort Rodman, Fort Taber, and East Beach were spectacular this day.

On the return crossing into Fairhaven on the bridge, the crew of Captain Leroy’s deep sea fishing trip, were filleting the days catch for the patrons who were loading up their bus for the long return ride to New Jersey. Once back in Fairhaven at Cushman Park, the local track club was in the middle of the Jr. events.

On the club ride, I may have gotten into a pace line, put my head down, and hammered for a couple of hours.  Today was a mellow, fun ride that really hit the spot. The club rides are OK.  The rides with no destination can be the best ride.  Either way a bike is so much better than climbing into a car, blasting the radio and trying to beat yellow lights, and the other cars to the next light.

The few photos of today’s ride are set to music using Cyberlink Power Director 13.

For better quality, click the Vimeo link at the bottom right of the video

Sunday Ride in Fairhaven and New Bedford, May 2015 from John Sullivan on Vimeo.

Ride With History

IMG_2306A small group rode a historical tour of the area.  New Bedford and Fairhaven have a Revolutionary, Civil and WWII history that is unique to coastal areas . Today’s 17 mile ride brought the group to Fort Rodman, East and West Beaches, Palmers Island, the Harbor Walk and Fort Phoenix, that included a historical narrative of each location.  Everyone’s favorite was the ride around the southern peninsular of New Bedford. The stories of quahogs, hamburgers, military, amusement parks, houses of ill repute and lighthouses are all part of the history of the point.

Fort To Fort Bike Ride from John Sullivan on Vimeo.

Fort to Fort Ride

The ride will take us around the point of New Bedford into Fort Rodman/Fort Taber.
The ride will take us around the point of New Bedford into Fort Rodman/Fort Taber.

Meet at 99 Restaurant for a 9 AM start.

Directions to ride start

The city of New Bedford was  free city during the time of the slavery.  They were welcome and protected from the slave hunters by local residents and it’s mayor Rodney French.

French was a Free-Soiler – a pre-Civil War political party that opposed slavery and the admission of slave states into the Union. His actual political affiliation is dubious. I have come across documents that state he was a Democrat and others that state he was a Republican. We do know that he was a delegate to Republican National

Convention from Massachusetts in 1856 and that he was considered a “Black” Republican because of his anti-slavery or abolitionist platform.

His anti-slavery stance did not make him very popular among his peers and the aristocrats of society. In fact, this put his career and life in harm’s way often. He lost many a business relationship and opportunity, surely including revenue, and especially in pro-slavery North Carolina.

We will be riding around the point of New Bedford on Rodney French Boulevard. Clarks Cove will be on our right at the beginning of the Blvd.  At the end of the point we will enter Fort Rodman, whereon September 5th and 6th, 1778, the British

East Rodney French Blvd. Butler Flats Light house can be seen in the Acushnet River.
East Rodney French Blvd. Butler Flats Light house can be seen in the Acushnet River.

landed 4000 troops  marching through and destroying much of New Bedford.  The troops marched inland along the west shore of the Acushnet River to Acushnet, then came south through Fairhaven to Sconticut Neck.

 At this time the British drove a group of 34 local militiamen under the command of Timothy Ingraham from Fort Phoenix, burned the barracks, broke up the gun platforms and smashed all but one of the cannons.

When the fort was rebuilt following the 1778 attack, it was named Fort Phoenix after the mythical bird which rose from its own ashes.

The original fort was built by Capt. Benjamin Dillingham and Eleazer Hathaway between 1775 and 1777. It was outfitted with eleven cannon, several of which had been captured in the Bahamas by John Paul Jones.

FORT PHOENIX

FORT RODMAN/FORT TABER