Monday, June 4, 2012

Skyline Drive

We got out for a ride on Skyline Drive yesterday with a friend.  Michael was able to ride with us this time, so that is progress.  It was a perfect day:  just a little cool in the shade, but warm in the sun and not too much wind.  The climb from Front Royal to the top of Dickey Ridge is always tough: 6 miles of non-stop climbing.  The screaming descents make it all worth it, though.  One of my favorites is the 1,000 foot descent over three miles from Hogback Overlook to Elkwallow Wayside. 

Michael made it up the first two hills before his knee turned him back.  He was lucky enough to see a young black bear on the way back to the car.  I made it up and over Pinnacles in the Central District, to Jewel Hollow Overlook (near milepost 36).  I had intended to go to Skyland, but hail turned me back.  By the time I got to Pinnacles, the heavens opened, soaking me with freezing cold rain.  Michael picked me up at Pinnacles and I opted not to descend to Thornton Gap on wet roads.  Our friend made it all the way to Thorofare Mountain Overlook at mile 40 and back to Thornton Gap, braving the slick, wet pavement. 

It was a tough, but great ride.

 My bike at one of the overlooks.
Following our friend down the mountain to Thornton Gap.

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