All right. We are all packed up and ready to go on Bike VA. We should make Warrenton on about 1.5 hrs.
10:20pm Warrenton is a really nice little town. After having a quick sandwich at the overwhelmed local deli, we listened to a fairly decent band called the Dixie trio. We snapped a picture of this 1926 ford touring car that this family has restored. It was like some sort of family hobby for them. The daughter was in the process of restoring a '28 Ford.

Tomorrow looks like a pretty brutal day. 68 miles with a 1000 ft climb in the middle of the day. The forecast calls for hot and sunny.


22.jpg20.jpg12:41 - Lunch time at Front Royal. We just came through Chestertown gap. Not really a bad climb, and a great 4 mile downhill into Front Royal. Everyone is pretty sacked out after a great lunch. 67 miles in a pathetic 6:50
21.jpgMichelle Takes a break and checks the Map. Funny thing is, so is the guy behind her.

11.jpg This is not really the best name for a Road.
Ahhhh.. The day is done. The ride after lunch was brutal. The sun came out and baked us. we even had to deal with a nasty headwind that foiled our well earned downhills. After finally rolling into Winchester and getting showered up we headed downtown to look for some dinner. We should have known, but every restaurant we tried to get seated in had over 1.5 hour wait. So we wandered the streets and stumbled into the "Picadili Grill". This place is a little diner the only seats about 8 at its counter. We didn't care. It was hidden from the other droves of starving cyclists so they served us right away with the typical greasy spoon fare. We will probably pay for it later, but at the time it was better than any goumet meal.


12.jpg This is a true secret to Clay's Hill climbing abilities.
Today the option was to climb the Blue Ridge. The climb over wasn't to bad, but the climb back was a killer. I think it was about a 2.5 mile climb with no breaks whatsoever. (no plataues, or abrupt switchbacks to vary the climbing rate. The turnanround point for the optional climb was at the "Shanghi Grocers and Sporting Store." This was quite a redneck place, but they gave us cool hats. 14.jpg

Lunch was in Martinsburg WV. Spagetti and bluegrass music.

Rest stop at National Conservation Training Center on the potomac. A monument to Senator Byrd.

60 miles.

Mike and Sandy lucked out and ended up staying with Leon from the Bike VA staff, in his air conditioned suite, here at Shepherdstown College. Mom and Kathy came over and brought us fresh fruit and beer. Leon joined us and we had a glorious dinner at Outback Steakhouse, miles and miles from any other bikers.

Tomorrow looks like a day of R&R here at Shepardstown. We have rafting from 2 to 5, and the rest of the day will be spent doing everything BUT bike riding.


Life is damn good in the dorm room. Camping out in a tent is all well and good, but the dorm room with AC might as well be the Four Seasons Hotel to us.

Mark, Sandy, and I stayed up late playing speed chess. 15 seconds per move. Nobody could beat Sandy.

Wandering around downtorn Shepardstown. There is an amazing Historical Musuem called the Entler Hotel (1786)

10:21pm What a great day. After wondering around town a little, we had lunch at the "Old Pharmacy". Its this quaint little converted Pharmacy that is now a restaurant. Then we hi-tailed it back in time to make our shuttle to the Shendoah rafting trip (blue ridge outfitters). The rafting trip was a lot of fun even though it was mostly class I and II rapids, with only one class III. Sandy made a bold move and picked the group leader to be our guide. He jokingly told us he was normally the cook, so we called him Chef Jeff. Jeff was great, he told us all about the formation of the rapids and the history of the Harpers Ferry area along the river.
The rafting trip was mostly very timid, with the only excitement coming when Michelle came out of the raft. Actually She never really fell out of the raft, but was hanging over the edge. Mike was holding her wrist, and then I yanked her back into the boat. I was actually very surprized at how easily I could pull her back in using one hand. I guess a little adrenaline in the veins works wonders. (Ok.. OK.. So maybe Mike helped a little, but I'm the husband, so I get to collect all the husband points!) I'ts to bad I can't call up that strength in the legs on some of these damn hills.

8.jpgAfter the raft trip we all pigged out at a local pizza place. Mike, Mark and Sandy, have decided on doing the century tomoroww, so they stuck around the town square meeting to hear about the route, and then headed for home so they can get a early start.

00000004.JPG00000003.JPGMichelle and I stuck around to watch some very bizzare folk dancing. These locals were doing some sort of folk dance where they would bang sticks together, and then run around the dance floor screaming thier damn heads off. It was very bizzare. Some things should probably be left in history. The band  was very good, and they also did some square dancing that was pretty cool. 00000005.JPG00000006.JPG

All in all, a very nice day in Shepardsdown. Nothing is better on a bike trip then the day off. There are no worries about packing gear, you can sleep (or stay up) late, and you get a real chance to wonder around the area.
6.jpgThe Yellow Brick Restaurant in Shepardstown WV.

Rain storms like crazy hit us today after we got in. More on that later.

Michelle and I did the shorter 50 mile route. We checked out the Brunswick train museum. That place was really neat. They had a scale replica of the B&O Railroad from Union Station in DC to brunswick. It was very impressive. They took every detail into account. We spent well over an hour wondering around that place.

00000008.JPGWanna Hear Clay's impersonation of a Train?

The next stop for us was Waterford VA. That was quite an amazing little historical town. The population was only about 250, but thay have beautiful houses and a old mill house they are restoring. 00000018.JPG

After everyone got in, we got hammered with rain. We were all inside eating dinner and just waiting it out. Finally it lets up and Mark and I go check out the tents to find that all of them were centered in a huge puddle of 6" deep water. We quickly unstake and drag them to higher ground, but its too late. Only Mike's kelty made it though dry. So now with all out stuff completely soaked, Michelle, Mark, Sandy, and my self decide to sleep in the host high school. All available space is jammed. So, sneaky Mark finds a entrance to the closed wrestling 00000019.JPGgym and we all are hanging out here trying to be as quiet as possible so we don't get booted out. What a misadventure. We will see if we make it through the night.
Mark, Sandy and Mike did the century option today while Michelle and I took our time and saw the sights. What were Sandys impressions of the Ride today? "It was NOTHIN!"
00000020.JPGMichelle couldn't care less if we aren't allowed in here. Just get us out of the RAIN!

60 miles.

Well, we are finally finished. We didn't get kicked out of our secret room last night, so we were able to sleep inside to keep dry. Todays route took us from Leesburg VA back to Warrenton. This part of VA is real horse country. 00000023.JPGMile after mile of stone, and split rail fences over rolling terrain. One of our rest stops was at a beutiful church in Plains VA. Everyone was ready to head home at the end of the day. Bike VA really does an excellent job organizing this event. Our main complaint was that they didn't have and cake left over at the end of the ride.
10.jpgThis is "Rider". He rode all of Bike VA on his owners bike in a cage. Isn't he just the cutest!

Bike Virginia 1998 Pictures

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