Entries in Virginia (8)

Wednesday
Jul122006

Rving with Lucy - in Virginia - Part 5

Finally - the last post on our RV trip to Virginia.  Not the LAST RV adventure - just the Virginia one.  Some of you will recall, this is a series of posts to share what it is like to RV - including riding in our Bus.  If you missed Part 1, 2, 3, & 4 you can read them here, here, here and here.  More detail posts on our current trip (Charleston, Hilton Head, etc.) will follow later.

This trip to Virginia turned out to be quite enjoyable.  Much more than we expected.  Both campgrounds (North Bend and Goose Point) were simply fabulous.  goose point site 18 front.jpg

Every time i look at the pictures after our trip, i’m just amazed how Tom is able to get our Bus backed in these tight spots.  I love that he has mastered this.  While this is the type of campground where we could just sit all day, it is also about 15 miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) … so of course we had to explore. 

blue ridge sign.jpgWe’ve been to the BRP many times - near Asheville and Boone, NC and we were fortunate to see some fall colors along the parkway in 2004.  It is just breathtaking.  This was our first visit in the Spring and on the Virginia side. Unfortunately it was too early in the season to see the rhododendrons in bloom but the mountain peaks and valleys are gorgeous even in shades of green.

 

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Now this place was interesting - do you recognize it?  mabry mill postcards.jpg

This is Mabry Mill which was built in the early 1900s.  It was originally a blacksmith and wheelwright shop, then became a sawmill and eventually a gristmill - the later two restored by park naturalists and is one of the most popular stops along the parkway.

Even if you have never visited this place - you may have seen it - seems lots of other states use it to promote their states. 

Well - what the hey - it is just the perfect picture for a postcard.  I cannot blame these states.  It’s pretty difficult to get a bad shot of this setting.  But i’m guessing Iowa no longer uses this mill to promote their state — not since the release of “Field of Dreams”.

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What an amazing place - good lord these folks had a lot of ambition. They built their own cabins and fences - made their own soap and whiskey. Click on any pic to enlarge…especially the soap recipe.  Course maybe you prefer to see a closeup of the still. 

 

We ate lunch at a small restaurant at Mabry Mill and then headed south on the parkway.  Lo and behold —- we ran into … lovers leap.jpg

The legend says that anyone who passes over the bridge here will see the ghost figure of a young girl crying, saying “I love you” or a strapping young man jumping off the bridge. The story goes that the two were romantically involved and their families were at odds. The two would rather die than be kept apart so they jumped off the bridge holding hands and whispering, “I love you”. 

We did not know about this legend before our visit — so we were not looking for ghosts - and did not see any but we did see this …

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The entire parkway is 469 miles long - it starts in the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and ends in the Smokey Mountains National Park outside Gatlinburg, Tennessee.  Ground was broken in 1935 and it took 52 years before it was totally complete.  The last 7.5 miles known as Linn Cove Viaduct around Grandfather Mountain - were completed in 1987.  We saw that stretch in the fall of 2004 — and it was absolutely incredible.  

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After our day on the parkway, Tom and i returned to our beautiful campsite and enjoyed one last campfire looking over this beautiful lake.  Such serenity.

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Our trip is over and this time before we put the Bus back in storage we gave it a bath.  Can you imagine cleaning this monster with your garden hose and a bucket.  I cannot.  Geez. 

Sometimes we use a waterless product which works great.  Just wipe on, rub in and then polish off with a clean cloth. But this time we took it to a truck wash.  It’s obviously a busy day - so we just turn on the TV and wait our turn.  This costs about $40-50 to do this … the higher amount if we leave our Jeep attached and get it washed at the same time.  truck wash.jpg

And there you have it…..we are back home - ready for our next trip. 

If your an RVer and can plan a trip to North Bend or Goose Point -  please do so - you won’t regret it i’m sure.  Just check availability and make reservations for a specific site @  Reserve USA.  Enjoy and safe travels to all.

Wednesday
Jun212006

RVing with Lucy, in Virginia - Part 4

Here we go - another update on our RV trip to Virginia.  To recap - this is a series of posts to share what it is like to RV - including riding in our Bus. If you missed Part 1, 2,  & 3 you can read them here, here, and here

Initially i considered making these trip journals a regular blog feature -  but since i’m so terribly slow at finishing them (ha ha) and they take so many resources to show the pics - i think its best to scale it back a bit  -  just the highlights.  Hopefully in 1 or 2 posts not 5 or 6. Geez. 

Of course - since i’m a woman i’m entitled to change my mind. Hesitation.

Ok on with the next update….

We certainly enjoyed our stay at the North Bend COE campground, but it was time to move onto our next stop - Goose Point COE  in Bassett, VA.   201966-371746-thumbnail.jpg

You know where they make furniture.  Course we are not interested in furniture.   And once you see Bassett you’ll wonder if they are anymore.  Seems most of their manufacturing plants have been relocated.  Lots of big empty buildings.  All they do there now is make chairs.  Like these - i think. 

Takes lots of wood and requires giant homes to use.

But that is another story — and one i won’t be telling — cuz i don’t give a boo hoo about chairs. 




Moving on .. here is Tom leaving our campsite at North Bend.  A rare moment when i can actually take a picture of the Bus while it is moving. We have some important business to take care of before we get on the road. 

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You see - RVs have all the conveniences you have at home.  We have a pretty good size tub207967-336684-thumbnail.jpg

2 bathroom sinks…here is one, 207967-384171-thumbnail.jpg

a washer and dryer,

a kitchen sink

and then of course the toilet.

All that water and waste — must go somewhere. 


The RV has a big tank to hold it for awhile - but then eventually we must dump it.

lgb tom dumpstation.jpgHere is Tom at the dumpstation. That’s what it is called — of course.


Remember “RVing with Lucy” is a series of posts about the entire RV experience - but not to worry this is as graphic as it gets.




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Goodbye North Bend
Now that this is done — we are really  on our way now. 


Goodbye North Bend.  We’ll be back someday. 




And Hello Big Trucks!

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Please, Please stay on your side of the road !  

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The drive to Goose Point - although just a few hours away it takes us 4 to get there. *sigh* 

Rolling hills, small town traffic, and a detour slows us down quite a bit.  Not too much to show on this drive — cuz i missed the big shot - remember i told you in Part 1 — we passed a homemade space ship sitting in someone’s yard. Seriously.  It was one of those moments.. Tom and I looked at each other..and said “did you see that?”  

but - wait.. wait.. look at this.

201966-372421-thumbnail.jpgWell paint my wagon purple and green and throw some Morton salt on my wheels - the city of Bassett is home of the Charter Bus Graveyard. 

201966-372426-thumbnail.jpgThis is the mother graveyard.  We also saw several homes with old buses parked in their yards.  What?

Must be a big market for bus parts i guess.  You’d think they could buy one of the old Bassett furniture buildings and store these babies inside - you know to improve the scenery a little. 

Oh well — we are close to some better scenery. It won’t be long now…or so we think.  Goose Point road is 10 miles outside Bassett - but as we make the turn - it says we have 5 more miles to go. 

lgb goose point road.jpgThis road was quite a treat - 5 miles of steep grades and blind turns. 

I do not take pictures of the real scary drives largely because i’m hanging on too tight or my eyes are closed.  Psychotic. 

But this turn was nothing compared to some of the turns Tom had to make. 


Once we get into the campground - we unhook our Jeep and take a ride - scope out the place.  We must plan how to tackle tight curves - back in the site, etc.  

These discussions are required - to avoid strangling each other in front of the other RVers.   We’ve had our moments.  Despite some of the driving challenges and those times i forgot to count to 10 —

when we see views like this  - all is forgiven. 

lgb philpot lake.jpgWOW — these remote campgrounds absolutely amaze us.  Here is the view — we saw driving into the loop where we will camp.  This is Philpot Lake.

We drive back to get the Bus and make our way to the campsite.

goose point tight curve.jpgThis curve was particularly challenging.  Tom had to take it slow - very slow - it was stop and go as i checked out both sides and let him know when to go left, go right etc.  One of the few times i know he is actually listening to me. *smile*

But he made it and once again - did a fabulous job — backing the Bus into our site. 

lgb site 18 two thumbs.jpgHere he is giving 2 thumbs up!

It’s late - nearly 4 p.m. and just about cocktail time.  He was ready - and so was i.


for the cocktails and the fire. .

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Yep .. checkout that view. Unbelievable.  Our campsite - we were speechless.  

3 more nights of this.  Can you imagine this place in the fall?  Well we have reservations for this exact site - in mid October.  Sure hope the fall colors are peaking. 

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to be cont’d.  Next, a day trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway