Day 40
After two days of rest I was raring to go. I ate breakfast (the best pancakes of this tour) at the Casselman and was on the road by 7:30 AM. The up and down characteristics of Alt 40 continued into Frostburg, but from there to Cumberland was all downhill or flat. Quite a downhill - about 2000 feet vertical in five miles. It would be a challenge going the other way. Both sections are quite nice riding and even the ride through Frostburg isn't bad. Good bicycling country if you like hills.

I ate a second breakfast at Cumberland after stopping at a Fire Station to ask routing and eating questions. Leaving Cumberland on 51 wasn't too bad and the route is really quite pleasant as it runs along the C+O canal route trail. I think that part of the C+O is open. If so it would make an easier (less hilly) route to Paw Paw, but 51 isn't bad.

I ate lunch in Paw Paw (good meal but poor, and expensive, milkshake!) and rode out towards Winchester on highway 9. This is a hilly road and so is highway 29 which I took on down to highway 127 at the Forks of Cacapon. Lots of climbing and West Virginia drivers, so this stretch wasn't much fun, but it is pretty. 127 joins Highway 522 shortly after 127 enters Virginia. 127 is much flatter than 9 or 29. 522 is a four lane divided highway with a rideable shoulder. I had a tail wind for that part of the ride, so it was pretty easy.

I stopped outside of Winchester to get a Virginia map and have a snack. I bought a Gousha Map which, among other features, shows the BikeCentenial route. This led to a bit of a problem later. Winchester, which I hadn't looked forward to riding through, turned out to be quite nice and it was easy to get out of town heading south on highway 11. This part of highway 11 is pretty flat, has good shoulders, and lots of historic sites. It was an absolutely beautiful day, I could clearly see the mountains on both side of the Shenandoa valley, and the temperature and wind were almost perfect for cycling, so I didn't want to stop.

I finally stopped for supper in Woodstock and then, heading out of town, I started looking for a motel. Since it was Saturday and beautiful, the motels were full. I stopped in Edinburg and called ahead to reserve a room in Mt. Jackson. I arrived there at 8:30 PM as the sun was setting. 132 miles, 6000 feet of climbing, and more than 10 hours on the bike. A great day's bicycling!

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