Wednesday, August 22—Confluence to Connellsville

After breakfast, a shuttle back to Confluence, and with overcast skies, the day’s ride began at the Confluence trailhead—but no rain! We rode some 10.5 miles along the canopied trail at a frenetic pace of almost 12 mph, and with no stops—too fast to take many photos.
Canopied trail section north of Confluence
At mile 65, we reached the Ohiopyle trailhead where we stopped to tour Ohiopyle State Park, its visitor center, and a view of the Ohiopyle falls, and to have lunch.
Ohiopyle trailhead
Ohiopyle storefront
Ohiopyle Falls
Our afternoon ride continued across the Youghiogheny River along the tree-tunneled trail another 17 miles to Connelsville. The trail was very similar to the Katy Trail in southern Missouri with rock bluffs on one side and river (Youghiogheny) on the other, bringing back fond memories of our ride in October 2016. No breaks were scheduled for the 17-mile ride because of lack of access to the trail for the SAG (support and gear) wagon, making for a long ride.
Kay on trail bridge crossing the Youghiogheny River at Ohiopyle
Youghiogheny River
Wildflowers along the trail
One of many waterfalls encountered along the trail
Regretfully, one of the sweepers (cyclist whose job is to ensure that all riders are moving along the trail) was injured on this segment—broken wrist—when a cyclist in front of her fell, causing her to crash into him and go over the handlebars. Consequently, our departure for a winery visit and return to the home base was delayed. Most of us opted to sit in the shade rather than tour the winery. Dinner was at a restaurant in town, Out of the Fire Cafe, and was good.

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