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Thread: The Plan

  1. #1
    Senior Member 12bar's Avatar
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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.
    "It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for someone you love". Blazeman, Warrior Poet

    11 Giant Talon 1, 10 Masi 3VC, 08 Long Haul Trucker, 08 Felt Curbside, 99 Specialized Allez

  2. #2
    HomeBrew Master! Gus Riley's Avatar
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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
    Last edited by Gus Riley; 09-06-11 at 07:43 AM.
    2012 TransAm Tour journal link: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/Threeisacharm

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  3. #3
    Bike touring webrarian
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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
    Visit the on-line Bike Touring Archive at www.biketouringtips.com

  4. #4
    Senior Member simplygib's Avatar
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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.

  5. #5
    Senior Member 12bar's Avatar
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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.
    "It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for someone you love". Blazeman, Warrior Poet

    11 Giant Talon 1, 10 Masi 3VC, 08 Long Haul Trucker, 08 Felt Curbside, 99 Specialized Allez

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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.

  7. #7
    Senior Member 12bar's Avatar
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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.
    "It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for someone you love". Blazeman, Warrior Poet

    11 Giant Talon 1, 10 Masi 3VC, 08 Long Haul Trucker, 08 Felt Curbside, 99 Specialized Allez

  8. #8
    Senior Member 12bar's Avatar
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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.
    "It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for someone you love". Blazeman, Warrior Poet

    11 Giant Talon 1, 10 Masi 3VC, 08 Long Haul Trucker, 08 Felt Curbside, 99 Specialized Allez

  9. #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.

  10. #10
    Senior Member 12bar's Avatar
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    I just started reading the book it has a lot of great information.
    "It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for someone you love". Blazeman, Warrior Poet

    11 Giant Talon 1, 10 Masi 3VC, 08 Long Haul Trucker, 08 Felt Curbside, 99 Specialized Allez

  11. #11
    Je pose, donc je suis.
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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.

  12. #12
    HomeBrew Master! Gus Riley's Avatar
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    Quote 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.
    2012 TransAm Tour journal link: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/Threeisacharm

    Naked Carbon Weave Aegis Aro Svelte, Purpleen Cannondale RT3000 Tandem, Orange Santana Triplet, Surly Long Haul Trucker

    So little pains do the vulgar take in the investigation of truth, accepting readily the first story that comes to hand." Thucydides, 4th Century B.C.E.



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