Monday, August 25, 2008

Vesuvius to Afton

Saturday morning Buck, who owns Gertie's Store, offered to give us a lift up the infamous four mile long Vesuvius Hill. We were glad for the lift because we had heard that there were pitches of 23% slope on this hill. We didn't think we could even push the trailer up these steep pitches. Four miles later Buck deposited us on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

We rode along this scenic wonder for 27 miles with views like this of the Shenandoah Valley. On the Parkway a couple, Bob and Donna, on a motorcycle stopped to talk to us. It turns out that Bob rode a recumbent bicycle across the Trans-Am trail a couple of years ago. Well ,they invited us to stay at their house in Charlottesville when we got there on Sunday.

At Rockfish Gap we turned east and dropped steeply off the Blue Ridge Parkway. We rode on Hwy. 750 to the small town of Afton, where resides June Curry, the Cookie Lady. We visited with June for about two hours before taking up residence in her Bike House Hostel. June is 87 years old, and for the past 32 years she has given water, food, and shelter to bicyclists crossing the country like us. The Bike House is filled with mementos and cards of bicyclists honoring her generosity. June is much beloved by bikers around the world.

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