Easy Day (Does crossing the Blue Ridge count as easy??)

Sunday May 17, 2009, 29 miles (47 km) – Total so far: 265 miles (426 km)

After the wonderful breakfast Tom and Susan gave us, we hit the road. Back through White Hall, up and over a ridge into what I guess qualifies as Greenwood.

Then the climb of the day started into Afton, VA. IIRC, Afton was a key railroad town when steam engines ruled, and the main C&O route crossed the Blue Ridge here. Sure wish we could have ridden the 2-3% rail grade! I ran out of gears, and it’s pretty tough pushing a loaded bike up a road that’s too steep to pedal!

Heading over THAT!?

It was steeper than this looks!

We stopped at June Curry’s house, the famous “Cookie Lady.” All Mrs. Curry did was offer bikers a place to get water and cookies, and she’s famous for it. I know it sounds almost trite, but this lady, going out of her way to help passing cyclists, has her own award named after her from ACA. She now has a bikers’ house, five rooms completely crammed full of memorabilia.

Simple, and generous, water hose

30 years' memorabilia

Mrs. Curry’s quite a storyteller, and we enjoyed hearing about some of the characters she’s hosted, as well as how some of them have helped her out as she’s aged.

Finally, we climbed up again — yes, walking part of the way — and crested Rockfish Gap. Hard to find on a map or on google; northeast of here is Skyline Drive and the Shenandoah National Park, and southwest is the Blue Ridge Parkway. Unfortunately, there are no services here, and I was still beat from yesterday, so we coasted downhill into Waynesboro; hotel, laundry, FOOD! Virginia was riding strongly today, I hope I can keep up with her tomorrow.

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