2 Wheels / 2 Bikes


How wonderful it was to be HOME last weekend!  Especially when the weather was oh so fine.

I started the morning on the bicycle, putting in 16 miles along the river and on our bikeway / walkway.

Once back at the house, I knocked a few items off the “to do list” and then hit the road on the motorcycle.  I crossed over Claytor Lake, and then stopped for a few photos.

I parked the bike for a bit and walked over one of the New River Trail trestles (more photos of that coming soon).

Then it was back on the bike for the ride home.

I may not look happy, but believe me, I was!

Iron Heart Winery

Instead of attending to the ever present “to do” list, I sent a last minute text to my friend Amy and visited a new winery.

Iron Heart Winery may be new, but the land it sits on is definitely not.  “Nestled in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains in Allisonia, Va., the charming family-owned winery is located in an Industrial Revolution-era farm dating back to the 19th century, providing a rustic and modern atmosphere for visitors to its historic grounds” (Savora.com)

Since we only had a couple hours, I didn’t spend as much time learning the history of this farm and winery as I would have liked.  It was hard to miss this blast furnace which was once used to convert iron ore to more usable types of iron.  The winery website, much to my delight, is full of the history of the farm and the surrounding community.  These folks aren’t wine lovers who decided to open a winery, rather a family who wanted to preserve the land. ❤

“In 2010 the winery started planting vineyards and established their Farm Stay, where you can rent cabins on the property for a lovely weekend getaway. After years of perfecting their grapes for distribution, Iron Heart finally opened the winery to the public in 2017. Currently they are producing Vidal Blanc, Riesling, Rosé, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay and Chambourcin wine styles” (Savor.com)

We were greeted by Rosie, and then entered the tasting room, which is converted from an original corncrib.

The family built this gorgeous stone fire place, and I look forward to sitting by the fire this coming fall and winter.

All the labels celebrate the strength of women in the fashion of Rosie the Riveter, and all of the models were family members or friends.

How can you not love that?!

The day was perfect with bright sunshine, almost too bright for photography, and a steady breeze.  We enjoyed the patio, and playing fetch with Rosie,

Then we took our glasses and walked around the property.

Before we left, Adam, the owner, took us into the wine making room (I’m sure that is NOT what it is really called) and offered us a taste from the cask.  What a treat!  The man is working full time in his “real” job and more than full time in this job / hobby, yet he could not have been more interesting, inviting, and generous with his time.

What a fun, impromptu afternoon.

The ‘to do” list remains, but I have no regrets.

For more about the history of the farm, check visit this link from my friend Brooke Wood, reporter from the Southwest Times.

Mailboxes and Fences

When on the way home from an early Saturday morning meeting, I could not help myself.  I had to pull over.

Just a few minutes drive from my home, this Southwest Virginia view is enhanced by old mailboxes and fencelines.

I’m slowly, ever so slowly catching up.  Be back soon!

A Lovely Distraction

Good Morning, or Evening, as the case may be! Before I prepare to head off for a day on the motorcycle, I wanted to share this post from my dear friend Karen, over at The Unassuming Hiker.  Karen has started a Hiking Club for Women, and she planned a Saturday hike for those who can’t make it during the week.  We spent a wonderful day at Carvins Cove.  Check out her post for more info!

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The Unassuming Hiker

A week from now it will be over, but I know it is going to be an amazing weekend watching my only child get married.  Today, I surrounded myself with good friends for a much needed distraction and to help me celebrate the week before the big day.

It started with a hike (surprise, surprise) to a place I had not been before, Carvin’s Cove.

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Hiking with the wedding photographer guaranteed a couple of good pictures!

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We got an early start and the weather was perfect.  Did not see any bears even though there had been a 500 pound black bear in the parking lot last weekend.  A bear that was not afraid of people.  As we arrived we were told that we had just missed seeing the bear by about 30 minutes.  We were fascinated by this until we heard the same story upon our return and realized they…

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A New Milestone

It’s been two weeks since I’ve posted!  Where did the time go?  🙂

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Thankfully, in between closing down the old practice, opening the new, and campaigning for Delegate, I was still able to find a few moments with the camera.

This first photo is from Carson’s Courtyard, a little resting spot in downtown Radford, created with Community Development Block Grants.

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On another day, I stopped by the American Legion Building.  Built in 1928, the building has served as a temporary courthouse, Catholic church, daycare center, Radford Arsenal hiring office, dance hall, voter registration office, polling place, and home to Main Street Radford.  The American Legion members have started a restoration drive to raise funds for this historic building.

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On July 4th, I rode the motorcycle to visit a few of the communities in the 12th District.

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One of three covered bridges in Giles County, the Sinking Creek Covered Bridge was built in 1916.

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This next one was taken with my new Samsung Galaxy.  Those of you who know me well, will realize that I have changed phones after 15 years as a Blackberry user.  Not sure it was a good move yet …

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The Newport Parade

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was followed by the Blacksburg Parade,

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and then it was back home to the City of Radford for music and fireworks.

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A few days later, the campaign office was buzzing with the sound of volunteers and staffers working the phone bank.

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So thankfully, despite the pace of life, I’m still finding moments to pull the bike over and enjoy the view.

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Next Stop:  Your Blogs!

Local Music

The Waiting was over and the music began.  A fun mix of Blue Grass and Country.

The classic combination of fiddle,

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steel guitar,

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mandolin,

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and bass,

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combined with guitar and excellent vocals,

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 and the evening was made for great music.

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Southwest Virginia’s Crooked Road is “a place of beauty – a place of song” and all along Virginia’s Heritage Trail, musicians gather to play and celebrate the joy that is music.

Join Me on a Little Local Ride

One of the challenges for any weekend is to somehow get all the chores on the “to do” list done, yet still find time to play.  By 3pm this past Sunday, I’d accomplished enough to be able to head out for a little local ride.  Luckily for me, local riding often means country roads, fields, lakes, and historic communities.

Dry Valley

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Claytor Lake is a reservoir of The New River, created when a hydroelectric dam was built in 1939.  I stopped for a water break and the chance to watch the geese and ducks.  It was a perfect afternoon to ride, but the bright sun made for challenging photography.

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Yes! That is a lighthouse! On the lake 🙂

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Soon it was time to ride on down to the end of the road.

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I’ve photographed this slowly decaying barn from many angles … it’s a beauty.

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From there, I rode through the community of Newbern, listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  I’ve ridden through the Newbern Historic District many, many times but somehow had missed these two structures.

The Old County Jail and site of the First Courthouse of Pulaski County

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The original reservoir for the Newbern Waterworks

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A little beauty, a little history, a little photography … all seen from the bike. Not a bad way to spend a few hours.