Breaks Interstate Park – Virginia and Kentucky

Despite the fact that every weather report called for extensive rain, I was ready to ride!  My goal for this ride, my first trip on the bike since the wreck 10 months ago, was to take my time, enjoy the adventure, and have a completely different outcome from the last one.  To say the least, I was excited!

The destination for this, the first day, was Breaks Interstate Park, a park shared by the states of Virginia and Kentucky.


I took a chance and kept my rain gear packed in the saddle bags and hit the road.  The day was overcast and just a little cool … in essence, a perfect day to ride.   As I got closer to the park the roads became curvier and the traffic became more sparse.  About four hours later and just a few miles before entering the park, I stopped at Mill Rock Point Overlook.  A short 65 yard hike, and I was taking my first photos of the trip!


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Shortly after that, I entered what is known as the “Grand Canyon of the South”.  200 million years ago the area was covered by a vast inland sea.  Once the sea receded, the river that is now known as Russell Fork began the work of carving out an immense gorge, renowned as the largest east of the Mississippi.

I rode straight to the Visitors Center, and was immediately distracted by this historic log cabin.


It was while chatting with the woman at the Visitors Center, and hoping to quench my thirst, that I realized my first error in planning.  There would be no traditional end of the day beer as there areNO ALCOHOL sales in the park!  Ah well, at least I was able to enjoy a cold ice cream cone!

The park has several trails and I set off to hike a few of them.  Most were less than a mile and all of them led to various views of the 5 mile gorge.



These images look similar but the clouds kept changing and I could not stop shooting!


It was 6 oclock in the evening and I met no one else on the trails and saw no one at the overlooks.  Perfect!


From this vantage point, I was standing in Virginia and looking at both Kentucky and Virginia.

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All I could hear was the sound of the river, the train, and hawks flying around overhead.


I had to chuckle as I came upon this sign and of course, ventured beyond.

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After several hours of riding and a few hours of hiking, it was time to head to the lodge for supper.  While I had to settle for unsweet iced tea, I thoroughly enjoyed the restaurant’s specialty of brown beans and cornbread.  Time on the deck was the only dessert that I needed.

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With the bike parked right outside my room, I settled in for the night.  I managed to escape the rain this day, but I knew that there was a good chance I’d be riding in the rain soon.


Next Post: Onward into Kentucky

29 thoughts on “Breaks Interstate Park – Virginia and Kentucky

    • Yes, I was taken with that view, too. It was pretty incredible to be wandering around out there, exclaiming with pleasure, and enjoying every moment!

  1. Isn’t it wonderful to be deep in [or even just slightly in] the wilderness and to not see another person! All alone with nature is one of my all time favourites! The gorge is rather eye catching, your bike is pure eye candy and that glass of iced tea could almost pass for a flat beer…… It’s lovely to get this retrospective on your vacation.

    • It really was incredible to be out there all by myself! I practically danced around as I moved to get different shots, or climb on the fence to see better. And then I’d hear a hawk … or the train … and it was perfect.
      It makes me so happy to explore new things and I’m so glad you are enjoying Kentucky along with me, Pauline.

  2. I’ve been enjoying your trip. But I had no idea that, even surrounded by all this greenery and the scenery, my favorite photo would be the last one of your bike. Maybe I miss it more than I thought!

    • It’s hard to give up the ride, isn’t it?
      That last one was such a last second thought … and I really like the way it turned out considering I put no effort into it 🙂 Glad you like it, too

    • Thank you! This trip was a challenge from a photography perspective. Wait until you see the next post … lots of rain! It just adds to the adventure!

    • indeed! I definitely missed my end of the ride beer, though! The next post will about the second day, where I learned that it wasn’t just state parks that are dry, but the counties I was traveling through!

  3. What a breathtakingly beautiful place to ride. I’m so happy to hear this trip went well. The biking, hiking, vistas and meals all lend themselves to happy memories.

    Life on the bike and other fab things indeed!

Because Boomdee dared me: Lay a little sugar on me :-)

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