Saturday, November 7, 2015
POST 1475; RAINELLE, WEST VIRGINIA; NOV. 07, 2015
Whereas yesterday was a pleasant warm 70 F. Indian Summer Day, today was a frigid 50 F with thick overcast clouds..To boot, my camera acted up all morning producing marginal images, for which I apologize.
Was treated to a hot bathtub of yummy water in which I soaked for nearly two hours. Rolled out of bed in Room 216 at Hawks Nest Lodge. Cleaned up this mini computer until 6 AM, finding no virus or error messages and verified last night blog update was tracking through the internet just fine.
After all that, met lovely Diane Cramlet of Scandia Wisconsin in the parking lot, who treated me to breakfast. We managed to stretch our meal out until 11 AM, conversing from the elections to the Solar System, return of Jesus, finally delving into our Immune System and details of how we each prioritize short and long range activities. Curious how newly met minds have traveled through life on similar paths.
Route 60 IS the Midland Trail...historically at least to locals as the major pathway opening up Mid America back in the early 1800's.
New River Gorge
Our walk began here and ended some 30 miles distant at SAM BLACK CHURCH where US 60 crosses over I-164.
Entrance of HAWKS NEST LODGE.
Please say HELLO to Steve Thomas, Restaurant Manager...where my $$ were no good. Steve has treated me to each of my over night stays at the lodge these past five years.
Steve and his Restaurant Crew: Please say HELLO to Belinda, Trenda, and Brenda
...and please say HELLO to my breakfast companion, Diane.
Example of stratified rock formations of US 60. Remember that these mountains originated in what is today the mid-Atlantic mountain range. Similar formations can surely be found on the Atlantic Ocean coastline in the Southern Europe - North Africa region...all due to Continental Drift, i.e., a large slice of Earth Crust sliding ever West and North over Earths HOT HOT molten interior.
Local vegetation...actually groves of short trees looking ever so like Rhododendrons of North Western USA.
On one of my previous walks past this historical marker, I visited the Old Stone House some short distance on a small mountain road a bit West from US 60.
One of very few commercial businesses in the high US 60 mountains. Most are already closed for Winter.
Two miles West of the village of Rainelle, WV, is this historical marker from the Civil War. General Lee's War Horse, "Traveler" was presented to the General at this exact spot. Andrew Johnston Farm is some miles East on US 60. We may reach Greenbrier Golf Course(s) in a day or two.
Mountain Top view looking West from General Lee's historical marker.
Three times I have pushed SAM (my cart) over these impossibly steep hills from Roanoak, Virginia to and beyond the Ohio River nearly 200 miles distant. Easier going UP. Very difficult - and dangerous making our way DOWN; holding SAM back - at 250 pounds or so - as she wants to run away...a good bet for the careless to receive painful shin splints...which I diddescending a steep curving hill in Eastern North Dakota, a few weeks and nearly 1,000 miles later...took 6 weeks to heal.
Please say HELLO to (back to camera) 18 ear old Billie and his court appointed "Mother"
Billie approached me at General Lee's sign, begging a ride in SPIA to his girl friend living in North Carolina. I chatted with Billie for a good half hour, convincing him of the life-long pain of running away from his adopted - and court ordered - parents. Billie recognized that he met SAM and me as we walked past his roadside home - pictured here - two years ago. One of seven adopted troubled children, Billie and I were both near tears as we renewed our two chance meetings on a secluded West Virginia mountain top 3,000 miles from my Bellingham home.
Rainelle Village sits at the bottom of this hill, as viewed from in front of Billie's home.
Intended to stay the night in Rainelle, but could find no electrical plug in for our computer, so drove just as darkness fell, to Interstate 164 interchange, where we have been welcomed by the local SHELL Service Station Manager, recognizing SAM and ME as having met her three times before as we passed by this way. We will park / sleep here tonight.
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Promising to become a dark cold uninteresting day to walk, we have lived a most pleasant and memorable day.
In the morning, we continue on toward Roanoak...thence to Columbia, North Carolina, quite near Norfolk, Virginia.