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Old 09-06-11, 03:20 AM   #1
12bar
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The Plan

On December 31st I will be taking early retirement after 32 years with the same company. My gift to myself is a self supported bicycle tour of the Blue Ridge Parkway in the spring of next year. The plan is to take Amtrak to Charlottesville VA and access the parkway from there. This is where I could use a little assistance, I am looking for a good route from Charlottesville to the parkway. Any suggestions on a route or other parkway tips and tricks would really be appreciated.
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Old 09-06-11, 07:27 AM   #2
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This link will get you up onto the BRP. It is a section of the ACA TransAm route. You could probably just stay on the 250, but it might be busy until it crosses the freeway. Half way up the Afton Mtn climb the route passes June Curry, "The Cookie Lady" Trail Angel on the Trans American trail. The map also exits the BRP after about 27 miles on the parkway, you probably won't want to do that portion.

http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/19751290

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Old 09-06-11, 08:42 AM   #3
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I can't help you on the route from Charlottesville. But, I can offer a page with 7 links to information about bike touring on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Not all of them will be of interest to you but some will.

Ray
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Old 09-06-11, 08:44 AM   #4
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Can't help with the route, but just wanted to say congratulations on your retirement and celebratory tour. I celebrated my early retirement the same way three years ago with a Pacific Coast tour. It was my "Freedom Tour" and I enjoyed every minute of it. Hope you do as well.
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Old 09-06-11, 03:48 PM   #5
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Thanks to all for the quick replies and words of encouragement, I hope to enjoy every minute of this tour as well I can hardly wait.
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Old 09-08-11, 05:49 AM   #6
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What time of spring are you going? I am traveling south from CT and plan on picking up the BRP south of Roanoke (because of weather) and going to Asheville NC.
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Old 09-08-11, 07:39 PM   #7
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I don't have a firm date just yet but am thinking about the end of May or beginning of June.
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Old 09-15-11, 06:58 PM   #8
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Well I have been busy planning my trip and am trying to decide about how far I should expect to ride each day. I am planning about 40 miles a day as a conservative estimate. For all you BRP veterans does this sound too conservative any suggestions or feedback would really be appreciated.
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Old 09-16-11, 01:52 PM   #9
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Do you have / have you read "Bicycling the Blue Ridge"? 40 miles per day shouldn't be too hard, but there are some stretches where services (like drinking water) are widely spaced. The book has the details you'll need, including how far down (and back up) you'll have to ride when you get off the parkway for food, snacks, water, and lodging.
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Old 09-16-11, 03:20 PM   #10
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I just started reading the book it has a lot of great information.
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Old 09-17-11, 06:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gus Riley View Post
This link will get you up onto the BRP. It is a section of the ACA TransAm route. You could probably just stay on the 250, but it might be busy until it crosses the freeway. Half way up the Afton Mtn climb the route passes June Curry, "The Cookie Lady" Trail Angel on the Trans American trail. The map also exits the BRP after about 27 miles on the parkway, you probably won't want to do that portion.

http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/19751290
There is a somewhat better way that avoids a lot of 250, which is marked as Bike Route 76 (not sure if it's US 76 or VA 76). It follows the linked route in general, but turns towards Greenwood/New town. You definitely want to visit the Cookie Lady (it's best to call ahead these days; she's not getting any younger). The last mile is on 250, but it's not too bad since most traffic takes the interstate and there are two lanes and a shoulder.

I can draw you a map later, if you can't find one.

I live in Charlottesville, so shoot me any questions if you have them.
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Old 09-17-11, 01:27 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Pedaleur View Post
There is a somewhat better way that avoids a lot of 250, which is marked as Bike Route 76 (not sure if it's US 76 or VA 76). It follows the linked route in general, but turns towards Greenwood/New town. You definitely want to visit the Cookie Lady (it's best to call ahead these days; she's not getting any younger). The last mile is on 250, but it's not too bad since most traffic takes the interstate and there are two lanes and a shoulder.

I can draw you a map later, if you can't find one.

I live in Charlottesville, so shoot me any questions if you have them.
Bike Rt 76 is the ACA TransAm Trail.
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