CLARKSTON, GA TO CHANTILLY, VA--Sunday-Wednesday, June 30-July 3, 2013

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July 3rd 2013
Published: November 8th 2013
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Home to Anderson, SC--Sunday, June 30, 2013

Heading north this morning to attend our cousin's wedding in the Washington, DC area. It is the first wedding of the next generation of cousins on our Mother’s side. There are only 4 (all boys)! Almost ready to go, as Rosie II is packed and we now just have the last minute stuff like water plants, adjust temp., etc. to do. After the wedding, we think we will head north into Quebec, Canada. Expect to be home by the 1st week in Aug.

Our starting mileage is 38361 at about 11:30 am and the temperature is 91 with clear skies. Drove a few miles to the Sam's Club to top off the gas tank as gas here is $3.309 per gallon. As seems to be our practice, we drove up highway 29 to return all the GwinnettCounty library books before hitting I-85 north. Since it is Sunday, and the library doesn't open until noon, we got lunch/brunch at the corner Waffle House to kill time. We need to pay our "out of county fee" of $30 to renew our library card that expires in a few days. We live in DeKalbCounty, but prefer the next county's libraries as they have many more paperbacks and e-books. Since I can check out e-books with any wifi connection, it was important to renew our card before we left.

Finally got on I-85 to find it full of other cars heading north. What is this? It isn't a work day where we would expect northbound, after-work traffic, to be this bad. Stopped at the outlet mall in Commerce and each got a couple of blouses. I wanted something red/white/and blue to wear for the 4th of July and found one there at Bon Worth.

Passed LakeHartwell on the border of Georgia and South Carolina and boy is it full. Lots of camping around the lake, but it is too hot to camp, so called for a reservation in a Quality Inn in Anderson, SC. As we crossed a full waterway while driving to the motel, I looked down and saw a gaggle of Canada geese, which are brown and black, and one white domestic type goose swimming in their midst. I guess a farmer somewhere is short a goose.

The motel was full of Asian-Indians in native dress who had come to participate in some sort of religious service at the motel. The clerk said they came from all around on a regular basis, to meet for services. Raining as we checked in.

Anderson, SC to Buffalo Park, VA--Monday, July 1, 2013

Quality Inn, Anderson, SC. Rainy, 71 degrees this morning at 8:44 with our starting mileage at 38483. Got gas at a QT heading back to I-85 from the motel, at $3.029 per gallon and she took 14.986 gallons.

Had lunch at a Captain D's in Gastonia after we had spent about an hour at Hamricks in Gaffton. I bought shoes, slacks and a blouse and Valerie bought slacks and a couple of blouses also. The blouses are mainly to replace the ones we bought going up this way the last time that shrunk so badly with the first wash, we couldn't wear them.

We knew when we crossed the border into North Carolina without seeing the welcome sign, because of the huge plantings of blooming gold day lilies and cannas in the medians and sides of the interstate. This state, as I know I have mentioned before, does the nicest job of landscaping. We continued on I-85 to Greensboro and then exited onto highway 29 toward Danville, Virginia. When we crossed into Virginia and came to Danville, we turned right onto highway 58/360 and followed the border along the Dan River and then to the John Kerr Reservoir that sits in both Virginia and North Carolina.

We were trying to locate an Army Corp of Engineers Campground called BuffaloPark. We had the county road number it was off of, but the county roads off 58/360 were seemingly numbered randomly with no rhyme nor reason that we could see. After seeing several roads labeled with the same number we were looking for, we found a sign pointing the way to the park. We paid our senior rate for a space, which is 1/2 the regular fee and settled down into a spot just as it opened up and started pouring. Still had to run the AC all night.

Buffalo Park to Culpepper, VA--Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Buffalo Park, just across the border in Virginia on the John Kerr Reservoir. Light rain this morning but still 75 degrees and the air "feels heavy" at 9:21. Starting mileage is 38,799 as we head back to the county road and then into the town of Clarksville. Looking for a gas station.

Interesting little town with its main street set perpendicular to the lake shore. Would be a town to browse in if it weren't raining and we didn't have some place to be on a certain date. Drove through a Hardees in town and got some biscuits---still make the best as far as I am concerned. Crossed the bridge over the lake and pulled into a new looking BP station on the far shoreline. Couple of things were interesting here. First, was the usual gas station/mini-mart beyond the pumps, but on the end of the store was a bait and tackle shop. And second, on the light poles nearest the lake shore were a venue or volt (look it up) of turkey vultures--assumed from their size they were all juveniles. They looked fairly drenched. Gas was $3.299 per gallon and she took over 20 gallons.

Using A Map of the Scenic Roads of Virginia, we had gotten previously from a Welcome stop, we had plotted a route through the middle of the state mostly using state road 15. Taking a short jog off 15 to the right, we entered the community of Rice, which is located directly on the path of Lee's Civil War Retreat from the battles of Petersburg to the his surrender at Appomattox, about 30 miles to the west.

After wandering side roads we were unsuccessful in finding Sailor's CreekBattlefieldState Park, where the last major battle of the Civil War took place and was key to the surrender of General Lee at Appomattox Court House. During this battle he lost 7,700 men, including 8 generals. We turned back to the west when we recognized our lost cause and into the very picturesque town of Farmville on the banks of the Appomattox River. They have turned old brick tobacco warehouses, built in 1899, into restaurants and specialty stores and it was very nicely done. After crossing the HighBridge (didn't get completely burned during retreat as was the plan of one army or the other) over the Appomattox River, we proceeded north on route 45 a little ways outside of town to intersect with a scenic route (622) through the CumberlandStateForest. A few miles out of town we came across the Cumberland Presbyterian Church that was founded before the American Revolution and has been active ever since. Pretty little church in a lovely setting.

In Cumberland, the county seat, we had lunch at the Cumberland diner. Valerie had a small hamburger with nothing on it unless you paid extra for each item--tomato, pickles, onion, etc. and I had some beef soup that had black-eyed peas, corn, peas, green beans and potatoes. I guess when I look at this list of veggies, the only odd ingredient is the black-eyed peas. It tasted ok, but this is another restaurant that is on our "let's not eat here again" list.

When we turned onto route 622, we thought we were in someone's driveway as it was so narrow, but it wandered through the woods and by small farms. Drove down into Bear Creek Lake State Park for a look as a possible future stay, paid $2.00 day use fee, parked Rosie II in the lake parking lot in the shade, and Valerie took a nap while I read a bit. It looked ok to stay at overnight some time, but was wet, wet, wet today with the rain continuing.

Continuing on further through woods and some horse farms we eventually wandered back onto highway 15 and continued north. We were now on a scenic route named, The Journey Through Hallowed Ground as it crosses several battlefield sites and ends at the huge battlefield and National Military Park of Manassas ( also called Bull Run.

Lots of vineyards around Somerset, Orange, and MadisonHills. Nearby is Montpelier the lifelong plantation home of James Madison, who was the Father of the Constitution, architect of the Bill of Rights, and fourth president of the United States (1809–1817).

We decided to spend the night in a Comfort Inn in Culpepper, VA. Rain, rain, and more rain today. Found a shopping mall near the motel and in it was the CountyLibrary. We went in to check to see if they sold books and hit a bonanza in the form of a back room full of books for sale at the $.50 a piece price. Loaded up on books and then went across the parking lot and had a real nice Chinese dinner. Checked in and went to bed early.

Culpepper toChantilly, VA--Wednesday, July 3, 2013

8:09 AM Comfort Inn in Culpepper, VA.

Pouring, pouring rain this morning as we picked our way carefully north up highway 15 where it joined with US highway 29 and is now a 4-lane highway. As wet as it was, we decided to not wander as we had planned, and instead headed on into Chantilly and the wedding venue. We did drive through the Manassas National Battlefield that was the site of the first major battle of the Civil War and then a second battle about a year later, before hitting I-66 and driving toward DC for a few exits before finding our way to the Marriott Hotel.

Checked in and crashed in our room. For the rest of the day we met and visited with family as they arrived. Had dinner together at a nearby Applebee's and then called it a night.

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