An ode to motorcycling from someone who is still not recovered enough from crash injuries to ride and misses a chance to be on his Harley.
As regular readers know, I have been off motorcycles this year because of a prolonged recovery from last fall’s accident in Roanoke County. While I can’t ride, I can still edit footage from shoots and look forward to the day when I am cleared to ride again.
The Roanoke Valley Harley Owners Group, which includes members from Floyd County — including Stayce Eller, this year’s chapter director — won the Virginia Championship Chili Cook-off today.
The group can represent Virginia in the national cook-off in Palm Springs, California, later this year.
Motorcycles were out in force in Floyd over the weekend as riders near and far took in the colors on the Parkway and then came to town for food and shopping.
A one-minute ode to motorcycling.
It’s been a while since I headed off on my motorcycle with no particular place to go.
But Friday was one of those days when I needed to get out and ride. The previous week, dominated by dealing with the death of my mother, left me both physically and emotionally exhausted. I needed a break.
So Friday was a day to ride.
After a short hop to Wytheville for a 95k service on the Harley Super Glide, I headed south on U.S. 11, down through Marion, Chilhowie, Abingdon and Bristol.
South out of Bristol on U.S. 421 — two twisting 11-mile stretches of asphalt known as “The Snake.”
Headed back up U.S. 221 to Independence, VA, then hit U.S. 58 for a ride to Damascus. Hit a rain squall near Damascus but sun came back out and was dry by Abingdon.
U.S. 19 out of Abingdon to U.S. 460 to Grundy, then into West Virginia, through a collection of small towns. Picked up Route 16 through War and then south to Tazewell and over the mountains to Marion. Rte. 11 to Wytheville, then Route 21 to Independence, back on U.S. 221 to Galax, then Route 89 to the Blue Ridge Parkway and north to Rte. 8 and Floyd.
Short stop at the Friday Night Jamboree and then home.
Mileage: A little over 611 miles for the day.
A behind the scenes look at WDBJ’s filming of a live broadcast of the Roanoke Valley Harley Owners Group (H.O.G.) work on this past weekend’s poker run for Muscular Dystrophy.
The rumble of motorcycles has become a regular part of weekends in Floyd as poker runs, benefit rides and gatherings just for fun ride through the town on just about every Saturday and many Sundays.
A benefit ride for Floyd County’s Volunteer Fire Department Station 1 came through town Saturday on a loop ride that took them from the Auto Fair at Chantilly Farms into Floyd, up Rte. 8 to Riner and along other country roads before arriving back at Chantilly to enjoy food from vendors, take in the Auto Fair and hand out door prizes.
A good ride for a good cause. Theatening weather may have held the crowd down but those who attended contributed to a good cause.
At 45 miles per hour, of course, that ride must be done in segments so I set our Saturday for segment one: Riding up through the Shenandoah Valley to Waynesboro to start the journey at mile post 0.
At the north end, I found construction that closed several of the overlooks, bad pavement from a road that is deteriorating and a lot of damage from the massive wind storm that swept through the state on June 29.
The Park Service must have worked overtime to clear trees and debris from the road but the sides remained littered with fallen trees, branches and other remnants of the winds that roared through the area at speeds as high as 80 miles per hour. A Park Ranger stopped while I was taking pictures of the carnage and said it would take the service most of the year to clear out all the downed trees.
Very little traffic for a Saturday afternoon. Many visitors may have thought the Parkway was closed. Many others may still be struggling with the after effects of the storm.
While those in lower elevations struggled with temperatures near 100 degrees, cooler weather prevailed at the Parkway’s higher elevations and a breeze kept things comfortable as I traversed the crest of the Blue Ridge on the Harley.
At Peaks of Otter, cones blocked the entrance. No power for the lodge or the restaurant. The gift shop and snack bar across the street was also closed. No electricity.
Less damage as I passed near Roanoke and started up Bent Mountain. My pilgrimage for segment one ended at Route 8 near mile post 165 for a quick hop back home.
Sometime before the year is out, I will finish the trip. Maybe in the fall when things have calmed down.
Of the two, J.P. Richardson — aka The Big Bopper — was all leer, from the opening “Hello Baby!” to the closing “Oh Baby That’s What I Like!”
And it gave me an excuse to produce one more video out of the recent T&A bikini contest at Black Bear Harley-Davidson in Wytheville.
Why? Why not. Let’s just say the shindig deserved more exposure. Maybe I needed to prove there was more than one way to skin a video. Or maybe I’m just a dirty old man.
Or maybe all of the above.