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Saturday, July 25, 2009

TRDT 7: Downhill all the Way

I feel like John Denver

" Now he walks in quiet solitude the forest and the streams
Seeking grace in every step he takes
His sight has turned inside himself to try and understand
The serenity of a clear blue mountain lake"

That's better than I can do this early on a Saturday morning. I slept on wooden bunk bed made tolerable with 3 extra cushions. Dave's place is an adjunct of Mount Rogers Outfitters. If fits my budget $10 a night. For twenty dollars you can get a Sealy bed, sheets and a pillow at Suzanne's Hikers Inn, but she was full up. She was nice enough to give me sheets and a pillow for $2.00. $20 gets you a room with 4 beds and a garden for conversation. Either one gets you a place in Downtown Damascus.

There are maybe 10 shuttle operations, bike shops and outfitters in town. This place survives of the Creeper trail which attract thousand of cyclists spring, summer and fall and a few hundred lunatics in the wintertime. Damascus sits in a valley under the shadow of Mount Rogers (the tallest in Virginia) and White Top Mountain.

Except for the newer residents, everybody here talks "North Carolina".

Skipping most of the details, I'll just say the ride down the mountain was sweet. I started at 4:00 PM and rolled downhill at a relaxing place that include four long stops and a swim in a bracing mountain stream. That was fun.

I am still sans pictures. They are the real stars of this show and I got some great shots.

I have made many friends yesterday, through hikes, a bike mechanic at Adventure Damasdus tuned up my bikes for free and french seatmate on the shuttle who convinced me to go to France, somehow, some way. She was easy on the eyes too.

The day wrapped up with a double header little League game which Damascus split with Abington and Washington County. The Damascus fans took the games in stride, while the visitors screamed and clapped in unison. I hung out in the smoking section with the old men while laughed our way through the game. When I'm done with Richmond, this is where I'm coming to retire.

Enough of this adventure which included a lost and found set of car keys. It wouldn't be travel without it. With car keys firmly in hand, I am heading back towards Richmond. I hope to break into Natural Bridge park on the way home.

Danger Will Robinson, danger

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