Sunday, March 1, 2015

Wintergreen (Virginia)

The recent snowfall in Richmond put us all in the mood for bit of time on the slopes this weekend.

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Paul, Tony, Rebecca and I headed to Wintergreen to try to find our share of the soft stuff.

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Conditions were ideal. The sun was out and the edges of the slopes had plenty of depth to carve from top to bottom.

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Monday, December 29, 2014

Johnson Cabin (Virginia)

Rebecca enjoyed Christmas with her family in Winchester while I spent the holiday in Richmond. The following day we met in Waynesboro and headed to our PATC cabin near Stanardsville, VA.

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The last time we stayed at a cabin nearby was our trip to Morris. That trip was snowy and cold, a drastic contrast to the unseasonably warm temperatures we enjoyed this time around. The sun felt so warm on Saturday that I braved the spring-fed tub between our cabin and Morris.

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We let the dogs run alongside as we rode the Meadow Trail on Saturday afternoon, then headed back to the cabin to kick back and sip a few beers.

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Johnson is a small cabin, but absolutely perfect for a couple spending the weekend in the woods. The trip was brief, but was a perfect way to round out our extended holiday weekend.

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Saturday, November 29, 2014


Keeping with our trend of EPIC weekend trips, Rebecca and I decided to squeeze in a trip to Aruba during the Thanksgiving holiday.

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We feasted in Winchester this year, so on Friday we headed back to Richmond to unpack & unwind, then repack & fly south!

The layover in Philadelphia yielded enough time to see my old roommate, Dave Laverdure. Since I last saw Dave, he moved from Philly to Trenton, NJ, so we hopped on the SEPTA to meet him for dinner at the Trenton Social.

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By midday on Saturday we were donning sunglasses and delayering at the Oranjestad Airport.

As quickly as possible, and with only one near-collision, we were at the Pelican Nest, sipping drinks by the water.

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Our main objective, aside from the beach, was renting ATV’s and exploring the island.

One of my main praises of Aruba is it’s size – it’s tiny! I like the idea that you can just wander aimlessly and really never be 100% lost. And there’s plenty, I mean PLENTY, to explore.

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The next morning we headed for the airport and bid Aruba goodbye. Our return layover in Miami was long enough for us to visit South Beach, so we wasted no time hopping on the MetroBus. First up - ridiculously oversized bloody mary's!

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We finished our flight home by 7am the next morning and returned to the cold reality of winter :-(

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Mountain Creek (New Jersey)

This weekend Rebecca and I decided to take an extra day for our trip to Mountain Creek to see New York City. The drive there was rather lengthy, but worth the traffic once we reached Manhattan. We walked the dogs in Central Park and found a local sub shop for lunch before heading to our campsite in Stokes State Forest.

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The next morning we stopped at Jumboland Diner for breakfast just outside of Stokes State Forest. Once we were stuffed on french toast and eggs, we continued the drive to Mountain Creek. Once geared up, I headed to buy a lift ticket and was fortunate enough to strike up a conversation with one of their higher-ups and score a free pass for the day. This was especially lucky since the park was no longer honoring last year's promotion for a free day pass with the Snowshoe season pass.

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I hadn't ridden since the park was known as Diablo, but I was pleased to see that the trail work had only improved since then. The conditions were superb and there were several new features along the trails. One in particular was a huge log ride that was installed for a photo shoot a few weekends prior. It had no lead-in trail, but I just couldn't resist trying it so I pushed my bike a few yards above the feature and gave it a shot.

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That night we headed to the Warwick Drive-In to catch The Equalizer. After the movie I caught a second wind, so I decided to start the drive home then instead of the next morning. I lasted until Maryland, but was able to catch up on my Z's in the back of the Jeep since we'd left our sleeping bags strewn about after the movie. The rest of the drive went by quickly and the rest of Sunday was spent relaxing at Rebecca's house with the dogs.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Bryce Resort (Basye, VA)

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Joey and I decided to wait the rain out one day before heading to Bryce, but even then we didn't have much luck dodging the drops. The day began dry, but after a few runs it started coming down and within an hour or so we were pretty soaked. Ruprecht was a good sport, taking cover beneath Joey's Jeep while we rode.

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The highlight of the trip may have been our stay at flagpole knob before our day of riding. The drive to our campsite was entertaining as we entered multiple mud holes and dodged the overhanging trees with the roof-mounted bike.

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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Snowshoe (West Virginia)

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The season's winding down, but our final trip to Snowshoe was a burner!

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Snowshoe experiences the Fall colors just a few weeks before most places, and our timing was perfect to catch the first glimpse of the vibrant colors.

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Ian, Joey, and I caught up with Nate just as he pulled onto 64 West near Gum Springs on Friday night. He was headed to Snowshoe to take part in their final race of the season. On race day, he suffered a flat, but the four of us got plenty of riding in to make up for that disappointment.

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By Sunday afternoon we were all having a tough time holding onto the handlebars, but we still logged a respectable number of runs before packing up and heading home.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sherando Lake (Lyndhurst, VA)

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Rebecca and I decided to take my brother and his girlfriend Shahrzad to one of our favorite camping spots in Virginia - Sherando Lake. We drove to our usual campsite near the Bald Mountain Overlook on Friday night, but found that it was not vacant. This was probably due to the Lockn Festival in nearby Arrington, VA.

We tried a campsite down the fire road, near the top of the infamous Sherando Lake climb, and were luckily met with an available site stocked with a pile of firewood. That night we made smores by the fire and enjoyed a few drinks before retiring to our tents.

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On Saturday morning, after a quick breakfast, Rebecca and I rode mountain bikes to Sherando Lake while Dave and Shahrzad drove my Jeep to the lake to meet us. We had an unexpected challenge on the trail when I tried fixing a flat only to find a slash in my replacement tube. Luckily we were able to stretch Rebecca's 26" inner tube into my 29" wheel and carefully navigate the remainder of the trail without another puncture.

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Once at the lake, the four of us made lunch and took turns swimming while the other two watched the dogs.

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We originally planned on hiking Three Ridges after our time at the lake, but when we finished relaxing on the shore it was nearly 5pm and another couple hours before setting up our next camp site seemed a bit too much for one day. We wisely decided to return to our site above the Bald Mountain Overlook. This time we lucked out and were able to use our first-choice site.

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The rain moved in as we finished preparing our dinner, so we retreated to the back of the Jeep to devour our "hobo packs."

The next morning we drove to Boylan Heights for lunch and Walnut Creek Park for a quick game of disc golf before finishing the drive to Richmond.

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