Archive | May, 2015

Safely back home

8 May

Great 10 day ride and lots of scenic pictures to sort and memories of interesting people who I met along the way. Like Beaver Bob & Donna  www.beaversprings.com and Claude Stanley at http://www.freedomsidecars.com   More on that later.
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Virginia

5 May

Fantastic backroads to Leesburg, over 200km mostly slow speed putzing along, enjoying the scenery. In the Shenandoah National Park I slowed down and watched a large black bear coming up the embankment to the guard rail. He glanced at me and quickly turned around and scurried away down the slope into the bush. By riding on some gravel I rode a big loop around Washington Virginia, partly up the slope towards the Skyline Drive. I love the roads with interesting names like Snickersville Turnpike although they are just narrow paved twisties roads with no center-line; beautiful to ride along. I finally got my chance to photograph some of the most beautiful stone fences along the roadside.

DSCF1738ew Virginia stone fences

My backroad route took me past many large horse farms; better described as huge well manicured estates. Travelling on my motorcycle I get to feel and smell the experience much more than in a car. Two smells were wonderfully strong; the sweet honeysuckle and the richness of wealth and money. There was very little traffic so parking the Suzuki on the edge of narrow road was reasonably safe. Many of these perfectly restored old stone fences represent over 200 years of picking rocks from the fields, hauling them and carefully piling.

Wednesday Matt and I went for a short drive, in an air conditioned car around Leesburg, and did a short hike in Balls Bluff historic park along the bluff and down to the Potomac River. By the time we got back to the car we were both sweating profusely. This is the sort of hot weather to laze around and go for a swim at the family cottage at Buck Lake.

In the short time I’ve been here I may have already become addicted to Ady’s favourite brew of individually made drip coffee.
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Romney Cycles in West Virginia

4 May

Fantastic people, super event. Lots of adventure touring bikes and riders from all over. Larry, Kevin, Heather and each and every other staff member were friendly to deal with. On Saturday 8 of us rode together on a tour through Smoke Hole Rd and shared some great pizza for lunch at the Front Porch Cafe in Seneca Rocks.

DSCF1585 ew Smoke Hole Rd WV

Two mechanics popped in some new tail/brake light bulbs in less time than it took me to empty my gear from under the seat. I wish this shop was in Ontario close to home. The Suzuki demo rides were a blast, I got to play on 3 new bikes.
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Steve above, and the rest of the Canadians, in my group, left Sunday morning.
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I enjoyed the day exploring more local paved back roads close to Romney.
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DSCF1654 w log cabin WV

Mark from Maryland and I were the only ones still around on Sunday night and we dined together on Italian food. I had just enough Schooner red wine left to enjoy a quiet evening in the empty parking lot. Thanks Carol, and the Hazlitt winery in Seneca Lake.
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I was the last to leave Monday morning about 8:30am. Riding today was hot and stinky in my RoadCrafter suit, just like summertime. The change in weather from spring to very hot and humid sumerlike conditions was drastic and I am not conditioned to it. Saturday I rode all day with a thin merino pullover on top of my sweatwicking jersey and was barely warm enough at the top of Spruce Knob WV. Sunday got hot, Monday became hot and stinky and Tuesday was hot and uncomfortable. Of course everything in West Virginia and Virginia is blossoming and there are some brilliant colours.
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I rode a long twisted “short cut” route through some of the George Washington National Forest to Luray where I’m staying overnight.

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