Tag Archives: Palisades Parkway

Sunday Cruise along Seven Lakes Drive to the Top of Bear Mountain

It’s been a long while since I helped organize a Seven Lakes Drive cruise up to Bear Mountain State Park. I’ve been wanting to put something together but it seems like nobody was ever interested on  Miata.net forums or the New Jersey Miatas facebook group. Turns out that people were always interested and enjoying the ride, they just didn’t care to do it with me….   Today however I joined a super secret, private facebook group on a cruise along the twisties of Bear Mountain, and it was a fantastic experience!

I’m so glad Chris, the owner of a beautiful 2008 NC1 GT PRHT that I’ve been sharing pictures of on this blog for a few times now, most recently from our cruise down the Jersey Shore a week ago, invited me to join him and his friends on a leisurely Sunday drive.

Unlike last week’s Miata meet, this was quite a diverse group of friends sporting everything from E30 BMW’s to Toyobaru BRZ’s. There were several Mitsubishi Evo’s and a bunch of Subbie WRX STi’s, even a Mini Cooper GP that decided to join when he saw us zoom zooming around.

It was such a beautiful day for a drive we were by no means the only group cruising Seven Lakes Drive, 9W and Palisades Interstate Parkway around Bear Mountain. We saw large groups of Porsche owners, BMW’s, Lotus, Honda S2000 (which was probably the biggest), etc. all cruising the same roads. As well as hundreds of tourists with rental cars (many sporting out of state plates, like California for example… which you know were definitely rentals because who would drive cross country just to take in the scenic views from the top of Bear Mountain?) It was awesome.

I had a blast. The group was very mature. Very organized. Nobody crashed. People behaved well. It was a pleasure. And the BBQ lunch we went to near West Point was simply outstanding.

Would love to do this again sometime…

some pix:

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Following Chris on our 7am pre-run recon lap on Seven Lakes Dr.

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The official 8am meet-up in Sloatsburg, NY

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Perfect day for a leisurely cruise in the mountain twisties.

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Lots of regrouping along the way, and doing some stretches twice.

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Lots of leaves collected behind grills, against the radiators.

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Yep, a ton of leaves… Gotta love fall foliage…

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Stage…

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Regroup…

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Line up for group photos…

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Some tourists did in fact come a long way… doubt a rental car company would have a vanity plate so specific…

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It was so congested that Police closed some of the roads we wanted to take for the scenic drive.

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Of course closed roads typically result in standstill traffic.

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Food at last!

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Delicious 3-Meat Platter…. Yumm!

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Final Group Photo Shoot…

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I am a huge fan of Chris’s Miata, it’s very tastefully done!

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Notice the difference in height, mine = stock, Chris’s = lowered.

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Back on the road to the top of Bear Mountain for sunset views.

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The End!

Mazda MX-5: Hello Jamie! Pit Stop in New Jersey for a North Carolina Miata Traveling to Massachusetts

Imagine you’re driving your Miata from Raleigh, North Carolina to Schrewsbury, Massachusetts; wouldn’t it be nice to make a pit stop half way to relax, grab some food and chat about marshaling? Well, that’s exactly what Jamie did while on a road trip in his 2013 Miata.

I was glad to hear he was driving through my part of the state and offered to show him a little taste of Jersey. The restaurant of choice was “White Mana” in Hackensack where I work, home of the original slider (little burgers)… long before White Castle took the idea global. White Mana is a great place to eat, chat and watch how sliders are made right in front of you.

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white mana burger sliders are made fresh, never frozen, served on potato bun cooked to order right in front of you, with diner style seating around the chef

Jamie and I met up at Vince Lombardi Service Area on the NJ Turnpike which I figured would make an easy meeting spot right on i95 before heading to Hackensack. And even there you can’t escape the reach of Motorsports with the big NASCAR official fuel sponsor – Sunoco:

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from Vince Lombardi to White Mana was just a short drive down i80 and of course every opportunity was used to take more Miata pix:

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After we were full, Jamie’s car needed a top off so we passed three BP stations before we reached the most reasonably priced one just near the Garden State Parkway entrance to send Jamie off towards Tappan Zee Bridge and avoiding the big tolls and traffic of going through New York City.

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Not too bad filling up for $2.65/gallon for 93 premium where most other places were from $2.89 to $3.05 including some of those other BP gas stations we passed to get here.

After showing Jamie the way towards New England I broke off down the Palisades Interstate Parkway towards the George Washington Bridge where I remembered the neat spot to take a few beauty shots of the Miata. It’s the place where Rob Ferreti shoots some of his SuperSpeeders YouTube videos and generally a nice place to be with a beautiful view of Manhattan. The little sun shower me and Jamie drove thru was obviously far more severe at the park because most of the parking lot was flooded, which yielded some nice pix:

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All in all it was an excellent day. Anytime you get a chance to meet a fellow Miata owner and also a fellow marshal is an awesome day. Jamie runs the Starter stand, and I had an opportunity to work for/with him at last year’s Petit Le Mans in Road Atlanta. Now that he’s moving up to Massachusetts, the same town where Jessie lives, I’ll probably get an opportunity to learn Start/Finish job from him at some point in the future. And in my marshaling career that is the next position I would like to learn how to volunteer. So stay tuned…

SuperSpeeders Podcast Video on YouTube Chat about Marshaling

Rob Ferretti has just uploaded a video from the SuperSpeeders podcast I joined him for a month ago. Check it out:

In the podcast Rob talked about some gripes he has with the artificially low speed limit on a local highway that plays right into the hands of the recent findings how Police departments around the US are unfairly targeting citizens for economic gains. He talked about his visit to Hennessey shop in Texas and of course had a lengthy chat with me about marshaling. (International Travel on the Cheap, and Foodie experiences)

I asked Rob for some advice about creating a podcast, something I would really like to do myself on the marshaling topic, and he invited me to join him, which was quite nice. I learned that doing a podcast is surprisingly painless and with a few volunteers I should be able to put something together soon.

I think having a Marshal Podcast would be a great tool to keep the idea of volunteering in Motorsport prevalent in social media, and perhaps act as a recruiting tool for Motorsport fans that weren’t aware that volunteering as a marshal was possible. It would also be a great tool to keep fellow marshals interested in topics that marshals around the world feel are important. An open discussion would cover all sorts of issues and topics that may be of interest to a variety of people.

I’m hoping to get something posted soon. If anyone reading this is interested in participating please get in touch!

I’m also hoping to record an episode on the road at the next event I volunteer, so volunteers are needed for that.