A big part of city riding is having the freedom to venture to parts of Queens for great Thai or Romanian, or Brooklyn for Russian… But when the weather’s this good a biker’s mind starts to wander to curvier roads further out of the city. The good news is there are some great rides just 30 minutes from Manhattan with nice views and restaurants perfect for an afternoon out , yet close enough that you can be back in the city to meet your non-biker friends for dinner.
For today’s 30-Minute Ride, I present to you the Saw Mill River Parkway. These are about as curvy as two lane roads get in the NY area (looking at the map some are about as curvy, but the traffic doesn’t move as quickly), reasonably uncongested, but with some tricky on and off ramps to local exits. To get there take the West Side Highway (not a bad ride in itself) aka the Henry Hudson Parkway, to Riverdale and stay on course…in a few miles the Henry Hudson turns into the Saw Mill. There are a couple of Parkway stop lights early on in the Saw Mill, but after that it’s smooth sailing up into Westchester. Be careful at night! The parkway isn’t lit – I’ve seen cars run off the road in the dark. Traffic moves rather briskly as those familiar with its twists and turns like to take advantage of it.
You might want to stop by Sleepy Hollow by taking exit 20 to I-87 North (to the Tappanzee Bridge) and take the last exit before the bridge: hang a left after the exit, and a right at the T (onto Rt9), go one mile or so and you’ll hit Main Street. Park your bike and take a walk around. Main street goes all the way down to the Metro North station by the river and there’s a seafood restaurant all the way at the end…or try some of the other shops nearby. Then get back on I-87 (going “south” this time), pick up the Saw Mill going North and keep riding. Take a look at a map. Read more about the Parkway.