Friday, June 14, 2013

Day 11 - June 14, 2013 - Lexington, VA to Troutville, VA

Mileage - 45.7
Total mileage - 340.4

The weather today couldn't have been better for cycling - upper 70s most of the day, sunny with big puffy clouds.  We headed out of Lexington around 8:30, and happened to run into a woman getting out of a van.  We chatted with her a bit about biking in Virginia, and the TransAm, the took off again (yes, up a hill!).

The route took us out to some gorgeous back roads this morning - we spent a great deal of time biking alongside rivers, streams, and babbling brooks - and it seemed like most of it was downhill!  We had some of the best cycling of the trip thus far this morning.

We spent the rest of the day on frontage roads, criss-crossing I-81.  We stopped in the cute little hamlet of Buchanan for lunch, and ate at an old-fashioned soda fountain!  

We cheated on the TransAm route after that, choosing to stay on the busier but more direct Business 11 route, shaving a few miles and countless hills off of our afternoon.  We still got to ride some roller-coaster hills, the pictures don't even do them justice.  They launched us down over 30 miles an hour, fast enough to propel us back to the top of the next monster without much pedaling.  Only bad part is that you nearly get blown off your bike when a semi or dump truck passes going the opposite way!

We rolled into Troutville around 5, and headed to the grocery store after locating the town park that lets cyclists and Appalachian Trail hikers camp for free.  We signed the book of all the hikers and bikers that stop in the store, and found that one of the guys we camped with in Mineral, Daniel from Berlin, is about 4 days ahead of us now.  We are sharing the space with a trail hiker tonight - super nice guy in his early 60's.  Said his next adventure will be biking across the country!  Need to remember to ask what his trail name is if we see him in the morning.

After a delicious dinner cooked over a camp stove, examining the map for tomorrow, and setting up camp, we are now headed off to sleep, as long as the trains allow!  There is a running theme to small-town Virginia - nothing is further than 40 feet from the railroad tracks!

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