Day 50 – Charlottesville to Mineral

Mon 26th July 2010

Well we’ve had a great day and we have a very exiting week ahead of us too. Our time with Dennis and Diane went all too quickly but we really enjoyed their company and we’ll take away some great memories. Diane packed us off this morning with a bag of goodies each to see us through the day and the rolls she prepared were just incredible. We ate them at our 40 mile stop and didn’t feel hungry until the evening!

Dennis, Alan, Diane, Chris

Dennis, Alan, Diane, Chris

Bikes in rear of Veh

The bikes loaded up ready to go back to the route

To avoid the heat we got up early and enjoyed a wonderful breakfast with porridge and real tea made in a pot. Was that good or what? Dennis then drove us back to where he picked us up and we were off again on day 50. Within an hour we were cycling through Charlottesville where the University of Virginia is located. It’s a very old and picturesque town and there we saw our first public transport bus of the whole trip. We would love to have had time to look around here and a definate stop next time we visit.


I forget what this building is called but it was designed by Thomas Jefferson

The weather was slightly kinder to us today and it was nice and cool (by cool I mean 80 degrees) for the first few hours of the day. I was also pleased to see that our mileage was about 10 miles less than expected beacuse we didn’t have to go off route thanks to the lift Dennis gave us. After leaving Charlottesville there were still plenty of hills but the further East we are going the terrain is gradually becoming less severe and should be almost flat later tomorrow.

US Mailboxes

We've seen a few of these

We were exited about our arrival in Mineral today because we were allowed to stay at the local Fire Dept and we were being treated to dinner by Major Don Lowe, the County’s Deputy Police Chief. We arrived at about 2:00pm and were met by Don and his friend who’s a news reporter. We then did an interview for the local paper and allowed into the Fire Dept where they showed us around and allowed us to use all the facilities. It’s home from home here.

Bikes in Fire Dept

Safe and well inside the Fire Dept

After we’d showered Don and his daughter picked us up in his works Dodge Charger (beast of a car) and we went to a local Italian restaurant and had a fab meal courtesy of Don, then it was back to mineral for ice cream. So it’s been another very memorable evening in good company for which we are very grateful. I hope we can return the compliment one day. Don has also arranged for a TV crew to catch up with us tomorrow so we may be on local TV if they can get any sense out of us!

With Don and his daughter outside Mineral Fire Dept

With Don and his daughter outside Mineral Fire Dept

I’m sat here in the crew room of the Fire Dept writing this and the fire crew here are a great bunch and looking after us well. We’re privileged to stay here.

Tomorrow we expect to cycle about 80 miles leaving just 60 to Yorktown for the last day. Lt. Jeff Kerr called me today to say that all is sorted for our stay with the US Coast Guard when we arrive in Yorktown. Jeff has sorted out all the arrangement for us for our stay in Yorktown and has even picked up some boxes to ship our bikes home. We are so grateful to him for his help. Also tonight I took a call from a contact in Washington DC who can put us up for the night at the end of the week when we visit DC. This is such an exiting week I’m beginning to feel as though I’m on holiday and Chris will too once the cycling is over.

Daily Mileage – 64.2 miles

Time in Saddle – 5 hrs 29 mins

Total Climbing – 3,328 ft


  1. Theres nothing like a good pot of tea is there? :)

    That building designed by Thomas Jefferson, was the Rotunda, part of the Uni there (I looked it up), so you are now leaving “Waltons” country, you’re nearly at the end – sad in a way, I’ve so enjoyed your blog.

    We are away on holiday ourselves and I have had to pay a ridiculous amount of money in order to get wifi access on the caravan site, just so’s I could read your daily reports!!! ;) Oh well, its been worth it! lol!

    g’night Alan, g’night Chris, g’night Jim Bob…….. ;)

    Les xx

  2. Hi Both, only two days to go, it is unbelieveable really how quickly time flies! I am proud of you both.

    Take care Love lisa xxxxx

  3. What a lovely bunch of people you have met, and still to meet, so friendly and helpful. Can,t believe how time has flown and a lovely week ahead of fabulous things to do. Enjoy your last few days on the bike and try and take everything in. Take care xxx

  4. What lovely people they all are.
    Can you believe it..only two more days cycling and then you can relax and finally become tourists.

    Well done!
    I’m sooooo proud of what you have achieved! Home isnt far away now!
    Take it all in!

    love you

  5. Sorry we didn’t speak yesterday – I blame Matt!
    Lots of people are telling me that they have looked at your site but they are not leaving comments. Don Savage sent his regards yesterday as did Graham and Beverley Dix. Well done, nearly there xxx

  6. hi chris and alan glad u have been getting on so well and have almost finished time to relax. i have been thinkin of u and looking forward to hearing all ur stories x x gemma

  7. Hi both
    Nearly there. Well done.

  8. Come back soon, Chris, you old fossil! Things are hotting up here in Avebury now that summer hols have arrived; at a guess we have gone from a below average number of visitors to more than average. “Your museum needs you”! However, not at the expense of you having a great final few days. Cheers – BGV.

  9. It’s been great reading about your adventure every day well done and enjoy the final stretch – don’t forget the sprint finish!!!!


  10. I am feeling really excited for you. This post should be on a diffrent blog but you didn’t have internet yesterday. I think I am right in saying that you are now cycling your last route and tonight you will arrive at your destination. Odd to feel anxious about it and I can’t imagine how you must be feeling. Have a wonderful few day’s of rest and relaxation and get ready for all the jobs I have saved for you back home!!

  11. Well I am thinking the same as Jan that this must be your last day cycling, if it is and you have completed your trip, a very BIG CONGRATULATIONS I am so proud of what you have achieved, now you can start sightseeing. Enjoy every moment. xxxx

  12. Hi boys! You must be at the end of your ride by now. Congratulations! We enjoyed the brief time we spent with you in Astoria before you embarked on your incredible journey. We hope to see you again one day. And meet your family and friends. All the best! D & K