NYC-By-Bike: Tough Luck

From a series of posts on exploring New York's neighborhoods, bike lanes and parks.
Cold overcast Seattle weather today. I wasn't feeling very inspired to leave the warmth of my kitchen, so I decided to tag along with my husband on his commute to work in Chelsea (Photo 1). I figured after he peeled off, I could keep going up the West Side bike path, around the tip of Inwood, and then down the greenway along the northeast part of Manhattan that I'd never bike on before.
Despite the chill, the ride started out well enough. I stopped for a water break around 92nd Street (Photo 2) and then continued on, keeping my speed up to stay warm until I had to stop and carry my bike down the stairway where the bike path ends at Riverside Drive (Photo 3).

I veered off Riverside and onto the bike path on Dykeman, which after a few blocks became a separated greenway that paralled Harlem River Drive. I didn't see any other cyclists, which struck me as a little odd considering there'd been a constant stream of bikers along West Side. I reasoned that it probably had to do with the path's potholes and intermittent stretches of gravel which made me thankful for my cyclecross frame and thick tires.
But then the path ended abruptly at a set of stairs leading down under the Washington Bridge. The smart thing would have been to turn around, but I thought I saw the continuation of the path on the other side of the overpass (Photo 4), so I went for it. The path did pick up again for a few hundred meters, but then disapeared after the next underpass (Photo 5) and I was stuck snaking my way through the bushed along the outside of the guardrail (Photo 6).
I was able to get off Parkway at the 155th Street exit, and I headed down the lovely wide pike path on St. Nicholas to 120th Street, where I turned left back towards the greenway that according to my map stretched from 120th down to the Queensborough Bridge. But as I was heading up the pedestrian overpass to get back to the water, I heard a loud popping noise and lost all pedal traction. My chain had broken, and although I was carrying most everything else I could need for self-repair, I didn't have a chain tool with me (Photo 7).
Bummed that I wouldn't get to explore this piece of East River greenway, but also a little relieved because I hadn't worn enough layers and was freezing, I walked my bike back to Lexington Avenue and caught the train home.
As I sit and type, the sun is coming out making me wish I'd been a little lazier this morning and gotten a later start. The forecast for tomorrow is still rainy, but maybe I'll be able to sneak in a few loops around Prospect Park before it starts coming down hard.

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