Buchanan, VA

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Buchanan, VA
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Good morning! It is currently 59 degrees in Buchanan, Virginia. Sunny today, looking for a high around 70 degrees. The weekend looks nice, but much cooler with the Blue Ridges of Virigina getting the first-wide spread frost this weekend. Limited color changing along the Blue Ridge Parkway, but down in the valleys is quite scenic.

Yesterday I drove down the Blue Ridge Parkway for 93 miles after leaving the southern end of Shenandoah National Park. The remaining portion of Shenandoah National Park was quite beautiful but after a while the overlooks all started to look the same. I was surprised that the speed limit was 45 miles per hour on the Blue Ridge Parkway, although in some of the valleys you could certainly do that speed easily. Other places were very steep and twisty. After crossing the James River, heading south, the parkway gets quite steep and twisty, but with some amazing views. Really quite beautiful country. My only regret is I didn’t get more pictures of the rolling farm country along one of the northern parts of the parkway, before it climbed back into the mountains. Almost had a heart attack this morning when I thought my photos from the Blue Ridge Parkway didn’t save. I quick fsck command on my laptop restored the media card and I’m back on my way. To be safe – and so I can quickly upload them on Instagram – I’ve also been copying the photos over to my phone.

As noted last night, I am now at the farthest south destination of my trip, camping at North Fork Campground in the Jefferson National Forest. There was the big developed campground at the Cliffs of  Otter Creek but I passed on it because I wanted to camp some place with more solitude and more space to strech out. I would have preferred to camp out in the back country, but in this part of the Jefferson National Forest it wasn’t avaliable as an option, so I went to a lightly developed campground with pit privies and running water, but no other facilities. Showers are nice in the morning, but sometimes you don’t want to camp where it’s cramped. There were two other families at the campground, but things were spread out enough that they were pretty much out of earshot and eyeshot.

You know it’s been a good trip when you have a map of the South-Eastern States that you’ve marked with a highlighted in blue. While I haven’t completed my course, I am at the southern terminus of the trip and are starting back north today, heading up US 220. Will either stay in George Washington National Forest dispersed camping or maybe head back to that dispersed roadside site I really liked up off a back road in Thomas, WV. We will see depending on the weather, my mood, and what is ultimately nearby. Bought some gifts along the parkway and some post cards which I will mail home this morning.

Have a great day!