Posted by: rustymccain | July 22, 2011

Later Hayter

We woke up in a fog this morning. I know, I know, most of our friends would say that we wake up in a fog every morning! But we were in a fog in two ways. First, the cumulative fatigue had made us both a bit weary, so getting going was a little tough. Outside, there was a real fog. It was thick and a bit worrisome for us as we contemplated our day. On the one hand, a fog meant that the heat might be held in check. With heat warnings out over most of the eastern U.S. the thought of riding 70 miles in the mountains was troubling. Remember, I am Mr. Daunted. So, from that standpoint, we welcomed the fog. But the lack of visibility was scary. We were not concerned that we couldn’t see, but concerned that someone couldn’t see us.

Near Rosedale, VA

Luckily, the route we were riding started on a four-lane road, but turned off onto a country lane after only 2 miles. We have ridden on so many country lanes on this trip that you would think that it might get a little old. However, it seems like every road has its own personality and its own beauty, so it never gets old. Today was special because, as we were riding down this back-road, we saw several historical markers. Though none of them would have much significance to a large majority of people, it makes you think about all the history an area holds. Many of these markers date back to the time of the American Revolution. It is very interesting to think of all the people who have come before us and to see the same land they walked, and in some cases, the homes in which they lived.

The first part of the ride was relatively easy with rolling hills. It was refreshing to ride through the fog and see the countryside just open up as we rode. Then we came to our first big climb of the day near Clinch Mountain. It was a nasty wake up call. For those who ride, this climb was looked exactly like climbing 3 mile hill in Percy Warner Park. The only difference is that this climb was about 6-8 times longer. It was difficult but beautiful. Down the other side of the mountain, we were flying. It was really scary with lots of hairpin turns. Then we settled down into some more rollers as we pedaled into Hayter’s Gap. (All you Hayter’s out there, they have a gap named after you!)


The fog was lifted by the time we got to Meadowview. We got on a road that paralleled Interstate 81 for the last 45 miles or so of our ride. Though traffic was a bit hectic, long lines of visibility made things seem a little safer. We stopped in the town of Marion for a snack a little before noon. Then we hit the road again just as a thunderstorm hit. But it was just a baby and we rode out of it after about 3 miles, then about 3 miles later, we ran into another one, this one complete with lightning. It was a big dog. And you know me and dogs. We decided to sit this one out, found a store and had more health food. Most of you now know what that means…something that is 100% processed and has sugar in it. We sat and watched the storm pass over.

When the thunderstorm passed, the result was that the oppressive heat we had feared was held at bay. Therefore, our last 18 miles into Wytheville over rolling hills ended up being pretty easy and pretty fast. We cruised though downtown Wytheville, which is just another beautiful little hometown, and found a motel the has actually been updated in the past 40 years so we are back in the lap of luxury in Wytheville, VA.

73 miles for the day. Back on track to make it to the coast by next Thursday or Friday.I apologize for our lack of pictures, but internet access here makes it almost impossible to upload. We are glad the real fog lifted and we think the personal fogs that we were in yesterday have lifted some. We both felt better at the end of the ride today than we did at the beginning. Total mileage, 3,285 so we think around 500 miles left to go! This is fun.



  1. Good work. Did you pass thru Damascus? Nice town. Have a good day tomorrow. If you ain’t in shape for the Blue Ridge Mountains by now, well, just sayin. 🙂 Have a good ride tomorrow and keep the pedals turning.

  2. It is awesome and you guys are wonderful for sharing it through this blog. Keep turning the pedals over, stay safe and be proud of yourselves for the distance you’ve covered. You and your positive attitude are truly inspirational!

  3. Glad you survived the dog and fog. Look forward to seeeing you soon.

  4. Head’em up and move’em out, keep them doggies moving (Rusty & Ray), Rawhide! You guys are awesome. Thanks for the call yesterday Ray… last time I checked I remain out of your age group, at least for one more year 🙂 Be safe.

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