I had never been to Codorus State Park; and since I have been trying to map out a suitable route via on-line software, I decided that an actual drive down and site visit was in order. Red and I took a “Sunday Afternoon Drive” like most other old folks, and I’m glad we did.
The route is pretty good until it gets near East Berlin, then there is a stretch of West Canal Road that is heavily travelled and doesn’t have much of a berm. Once you get south of Abbotstown on Rt. 194, there are some rolling hills with narrow berms and guide rails, so you have little space to bail if things get dicey. I wouldn’t say these are deal breakers, but I’m going to revisit these areas to see if perhaps remaining on back roads, and trading some hills for a safer route, might be best. I do have to say, though, that the first 10 miles are just gorgeous rural countryside.
The other worry is that this is not just some afternoon jaunt at this point. At 30-35 miles with a loaded bike, and in my current lack of conditioning, this is going to be an epic effort. As you get closer to the park, there are some pretty good climbs.
The park itself is much larger and spread out than Pinchot. I was surprised at the distances we were travelling, even in the camping area. On the plus side, the wilderness camping sites, although limited in number, are really nice. They are much larger than Pinchot, and a bit more secluded.
You have to ride through the main Winnibago area and turn off onto a gravel road that takes you down to the lake. I don’t know who came up with it, but it’s called the Timberdoodle Tenting Area. (See the pink sites in the upper left hand corner.) No water or electric, and the closest bathroom/shower building is a good hike back up the road. Just poking around, this looked like a prime site. Here is a view of the lake from the road adjacent to the site:
I was concerned about the boat access ramp at the end of the road and how much traffic there might be, but I was assured by the park office staff that it sees limited use – there are several more accessible ramps.
I guess they have an issue with aliens drowning in the lake.
So… I have my schedule cleared for the 22nd and 23rd, but I’m going to work some more on the route, and plan on this being a bit outside the S24O parameters. If you’re up for it, let me know.