We feel so supported by family and friends who sent emails and texts wishing us good luck and happy trails. This morning family, friends, and neighbors came by to see us off.
Roy's father quoted Louis L'Amour, saying that he met a lot of people who told him how many miles they had gone, but very few told him what they had seen. With this in mind, we will try to share some of what we have seen.
We were even joined for part of the day by long-time cycling friends, Bill and Victor.
The day was bright and sunny, but the towpath was mostly shaded and much of the ride was perfumed by honeysuckle. Wind was either non-existent or favorable.
We saw birds, turtles, frogs, and lots of cyclists and joggers. We even stepped back in time at Edwards Ferry, where costumed interpreters were having lunch. We had to portage over a downed tree at one point, reminding us of a trip to the Boundary Waters.
With about seven miles to go, our sunny day disappeared. We took off our sunglasses and picked up the pace. Roy said it was like the final minutes of an exciting game. Who would win? Us or the clouds? With 3 miles to go the skies opened up on us. We carried on.
In retrospect, we should have holed up some place and waited for the storm to pass. We were well drenched.
We carried out sodden bikes up the stairs to cross the river to Harpers Ferry. Within a mile of our motel, Roy got a flat on his new tires.
We are at the EconoLodge, which couldn't be more bike friendly. They have a high pressure hose and rags for cyclists to clean the mud off their bikes. A delicious dinner at The Anvil in Bolivar brightened our spirits.