Nick on the bike 2005: Oregon to Virginia
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Shakedown Cruise, Day 1: Burnley Station to Ashland
May 27, 2005, 4:00 PM
Where am I now: Near Ashland, Virginia
Today's distance: 80 miles (4576 miles total so far)
Well, it's about 4PM and I'm sitting beneath the towering oaks of Pamunky Woods, which is the tent area of a campground that seems like it's in the median strip of Interstate 95, south of Ashland, Virginia. I have the place to myself. The ambience is industrial/urban/jake brake, with touch back-up warning beeper.

This is the first day of my shakedown cruise, which is about finishing my west to east crossing of America before I start. That way, when I finally drag my sorry butt over the Blue Ridge and back to Charlottesville in Septmber, I won't have to get back on the bike the next day and ride to Yorktown.

For a first day on the road, I could ask for better. Clear skies, bright sunshine, not too hot, not too humid. I left home around 8:30. Had to wait for a train in Gordonsville, stoppd in Trevillians and again in Beaverdam to eat peanutbutter & bannana sandwiches, and here I am 80 miles later not too much the worse for wear.

If today is representative of what's in store for the rest of the transAmerica trip, I have nothing to worry about. Perfect weather, a tail wind much of the time, no rabid dogs or drivers. I only managed to get lost once, when I was daydreaming or something and missed turn. That excursion only cost me 5 miles or so but hey, the wind was blowing in the right direction!

It's time to prepare the evening feast (pasta stew, what else?). Tomorrow, on to Williamsburg.

(I've learned the limitations of my cell phone camera, I'll be using a real camera on the big trip.)