Start: Newark Penn Station. Finish: Branch Brook Park Distance: 4 miles, climbing 192′.
Start: Branch Brook Park. Finish: George Washngton Bridge. Distance: 17.54 miles, climbing 849′.
Branch Brook Park is a great local bike racing venue.
Newark’s Branch Brook Park has hosted bike races for at least 50 years. The course is flat, winding, fast, and fun.
It’s also a very easy race to get to from New York City without a car. You just need to know the NJ Transit train schedule.
And, as this typically a “training race,” you might as well put in some miles afterwards to do some more fat-burning, or just pile on the caloric deficit and make it a full day of riding.
These rides, there are two in this package, get you from a train station in Newark, NJ to the race (part 1). And then from the race up to the George Washington Bridge (part 2), where any city cyclist should be able to make their way home. Some folks who want miles could reverse the part 2 to ride to the race as well.
To Get There…
Take the train from New York City’s Penn Station to Newark. Depending on the train you get on, moving time from NY Penn to Newark is between 15 and 20 minutes. It’s legal to bring bikes on trains just about all the time, save rush hours and holidays, so use the app to check the schedule and buy a ticket online, ride to Midtown, clamber down Penn Station’s stairs in your cleats, find the train, and go. You can either take a train to Newark’s Penn Station or Newark’s Broad Street Station. Many go to both places every hour.
The other side, Newark is the reverse. There, the train is elevated, not below ground, so you’ll take stairs or an escalator down to the street and go.
Part 1 of this ride takes you from Newark to the registration area for bike racing in Branch Brook Park. This first part is uphill at first, and then flattens.
To Get Home…
Part 2 of this ride takes you from the registration area for bike racing in Branch Brook Park to the New Jersey Side of the George Washington Bridge. the ride has a few early hills, then it’s pretty much flat until you have to take a nearly mile-long climb up the Palisades. The hill is big, but the ride is nearly over, so you can surely find the inspiration to climb it no matter how dead the legs. Despite this ride being through densely-packed suburbia, it’s actually pretty quiet. The roads don’t feel busy until the end.
Particulars Part 1 (Branch Brook Race Directions)
Start: Penn Station or Broad Street Station, Newark, NJ
Finish: Branch Brook Park, Newark, NJ
Going through: Essex County.
Distance: 4.4 or 3.2 miles.
Climbing: 192′ or 135′
Particulars Part 2 (Branch Brook Race Directions)
Start: Branch Brook Park, Newark, NJ
Finish: George Washington Bridge, Fort Lee, NJ
Going through: Essex, Bergen Counties.
Distance: 17.54 miles.
Includes: two PDFs with intelligence and three GPX files to upload to your bike computer or mobile device. A how-to can be found here. The PDF prepares you for the route and can be glanced at, printed out and/or uploaded to your mobile device. The GPX are to be uploaded into your bike computer or mobile device so you can let the machine give you the directions as you ride along.