Labor Day Weekend: Skyline, BRP, VA, WV

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Labor Day Weekend: Skyline, BRP, VA, WV

Postby RockBottom » Mon Sep 06, 2010 7:35 am

Saturday and Sunday I did a a 775 mile loop through Virginia and West Virginia. Saturday morning, I took the interstate to Front Royal, VA, then rode Skyline Drive and the northern section of the Blue Ride Parkway. That night I visited a commune and had an LSD trip at a cemetery in New Orleans. No, wait a minute--that's not right. I spent the night in a Holiday Inn near Roanoke. I hit a nice BBQ place for dinner (Three Lil Pigs in Daleville), then drank beer and watched college football in my room. The next day I zig zagged through western Virginia and eastern West Virginia, finally popping back on the interstate near Winchester and coming home.

Skyline Drive is in great shape. The first 15 miles of BRP badly need paved, but it's fine after that. ince it was a holiday weekend, they were a bit crowded but that only hindered me when cars got stacked up behind a bicyclist on a climb. The roads were virtually abandoned the second day except around Seneca Rocks. Routes 311, 39, and 250 were outstanding. 678 was a good tip from someone on the BMW MOA board who saw my route.

I only had two hiccups. About an hour out Saturday morning, I noticed that the route on my Zumo 220 had been corrupted. This was particularly annoying and unexpected since I'd just had that unit replaced under warranty. It was literally less than a week old, so I hadn't thought to check the route when I loaded it. Luckily, I'm a meticulous planner (and a bit paranoid), so I'd written the route down as a backup. I bought a map and a highlighter, and navigated that way.

Then Sunday morning, I grossly underestimated how cold it was going to be in the mountains. It was in the low 40s and all I had was a light weight leather jacket and a couple of tee shirts. I got so badly chilled that I had difficulty opening my face shield because my hand was shaking so much. It was utterly miserable but there wasn't much I could do unless I wanted to just sit there and wait for it to warm up. I was in the middle of nowhere, so I couldn't buy more clothes. I finally got coffee in White Sulphur Springs. That helped a bit. Once it warmed up, the weather was spectacular. By the afternoon it was in the 70s with a clear sky.

My R1200R, which I bought in July to replace a problem-ridden F800ST, was flawless. I passed 5,000 miles soon after leaving home on Saturday, so will have my 6,000 mile service in a week or so. I do need to remove the crust of bugs today. I ran into a group of a about a dozen BMW riders from North Carolina at a convenience store somewhere in West Virginia. Luckily I'm a South Carolinian, so I could vaguely understand their dialect.

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The route: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&ie=UTF8&msa=0&msid=107895972692907556797.00048f089ac2263e2cf1f&z=8
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RockBottom
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Location: Carlisle, PA

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