Tour de Newport
Aquidneck Island Circuit
I've been looking for a scenic route around Newport(Aquidneck) Island for some time. My search started when I examined the route for the Flattest Century in the East, a route that in fact is not the flattest. In examining the route I discovered that it rarely went along the ocean.
When I learned of the Tour de Newport, I checked its route and then looked for other Newport Is routes on the net. I found the Island (Newport) Circuit route. I picked and chose parts from these two routes trying to ride along the ocean whenever possible. Here's the route we rode: http://ridewithgps.com/routes/165717
I had hoped to ride the East Bay rail trail as well and/or the route for the Jamestown Classic road race, but we ran out of time. It would take all three routes plus a little to make a century.
As we got ready to ride Vinnie noticed he had a flat. After a riding a few blocks we were next to the ocean. Across a cove we spotted a windmills spinning slowly. We rounded the NE end of the island before turning inland to cut down its center before returning to the ocean on the Defense Highway Commuter Bike Lane. You ride at your own risk on the bike lane, but should not encounter roller-bladers, skateboarders of horses. All along the naval station was great scenery including the decommissioned aircraft carrier the USS Saratoga.
After a few blocks inland going around some base housing we were back on the ocean by the Newport Bridge and Goat Is. The route went through the downtown area where cars held us up. At the outskirts of Newport we returned to the ocean on a scenic highway called Ocean Drive and rode to Ft Adams where we stopped for lunch. Afterwards we continued riding around the fort, walking our bikes around a barrier that blocks cars.
At the entrance to Ft Adams park we picked up Ocean Drive which turned into Ocean Ave. As we rode we caught up to a Morgan sportscar which Charlie & Mari outsprinted. Almost all of the ride on the southern end of the island was along the ocean or by Newport mansions. In the midst of the mansions we rode to the ocean where Cliff Walk goes along the ocean for 3.5 mi.
Vinnie picked Easton Bay beach for his second flat. He had a cut in his rear sidewall. Charlie gave him a patch for the tire and soon we were on our way to Sachuest Pt, a wildlife sanctuary.
A few miles from Sachuest Pt, we finally left the ocean to ride on a narrow country road that appeared like it might turn to dirt any time. The rest of the ride was up the center of the island where the route avoided the busier roads.