Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Biking the C & O Canal

May is a tough month for mountain gardeners. First it's warm and then it snows and all it does all month long is tease you... Do what I do: run away.
Maryland is zone 7 - temps are warm and everything is blooming!

There are no mile markers on the road to self-discovery. Sometimes it feels like a super highway. Other times, a dead end.

Right when I think things are going just fine, I bump into more potholes and detours.... Days when I'm not quite sure where I'm heading... Or, even if this is where I should be, once I arrive.

It's these feelings, of being slightly lost, that have plagued me for a couple of months, now.

Good thing BK was in charge of the map.

Pretty soon I'm gonna have life all figured out. (And, when I do, you'll be the first to know.)

What I do know, for certain sure, is that when life becomes tiresome there is only one place to go - far, far away from where you are right now.

We pedalled up the C & O Canal.

Where Bluebells outnumber dandelions.

Pink Dogwoods wildly bloom, in defiance of the forest canopy covering our trail.

We biked 184 miles in 3.5 days!

(This does not include the side trips which were uphill in every direction.)

Swallowtail Butterflies danced along the trail, keeping pace with our bicycles.

We were... attacked by a goose, threatened by snakes, glared at by a hoot owl and mocked by a beaver.

We learned that booking lodging at a hotel called 'Hill Top' might not be the wisest choice if you're on your bicycle.

We determined that negative people have a leg up on us happy gals when it comes to the 4-petal dogwood flowers predicting romance.*

And, we found that there are some truly heroic B&B owners who will drive through the backroads of West Virginia to pick us up in the pitch dark, in the middle of freakin' nowhere, when we had most definitely run out of steam.

"I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I realized that the Lord doesn't work that way so I stole one and asked Him to forgive me." - Emo Phillip

There's about a million locks along the C & O Canal, between Washington, D.C. and Cumberland, Maryland. But, after you've pedalled 100+ miles they all start looking the same.

* True love is a slam dunk when it comes to the Dogwood Trees, adored for their consistent, 4-petal flowers. Predict your fortune by plucking the first petal and say 'he loves me not.' The last of the 4 petals will always confirm that he does, indeed, 'love you.'


thismngardener said...

Nice! Looks beautiful! Welcome back-Jane

Firefighter said...

Great pictures, I am thinking of riding the path with a friend. Any tips?

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Bike it from Cumberland to DC (we did the opposite.) It's downhill in that direction and that's always good. :) Plus there's no where to get a beer when you arrive in Cumberland after peddling 184 miles. That was more than a little disappointing...