Monday, May 2, 2016

Day 9 - Christiansburg, VA to Wytheville, VA

Friday April 29, 2016, 54 miles(86.9 km)

This day started off with me sleeping through my alarm.  I had set it early so that I could get to Wytheville in plenty of time to get to the post office to pick up supplies for Frank.  He is picky, just can't get his supplies at a convenience store.  But I did get on the road a a reasonable time.  The first 12 miles from Christiansburg to Radford were uneventful.  In Radford they have a nice cycling trail through a park.  Just as I was about to leave the trail I had a steep hill to climb and then it happened.  Bang and I knew it was not good.  I look down and see my chain is laying on the ground under my trike.. not good.  I knew I had quick links to put it back together though I had never used one before.  I checked and there was a bike shop not too far away but they would not be open for an hour so I figured I would try to fix it.  I managed to get the broken link off but just could not figure out what I was doing wrong on connecting the quick link.  By this time I decided I would walk my trike and trailer to the bike shop.  This is not an easy task, there is not much space between the trike and trailer to walk pushing the trike.  Fortunately the walk was only a little over 1/2 mile.  I got there just after the shop opened.  After about half an hour my trike was ready to go and I was on my way.  I figured I could still get to Wytheville before the post office closed.

I continued riding through the Virginia countryside, somewhat at a rush, which was the first time on this trip that I had set a deadline.  About 20 miles later a loud clank and my pedals stopped moving.  Not a good thing.  I look and see my chain had fallen off the large sprocket in the back and had wedged itself in tight between the sprocket and the rest of the wheel hub.  I tried pulling it out and it just did not seem to want to move.  I called the bike shop back home and asked the mechanic if there were any tricks to pulling it out.  He said no not really, just have to muscle it out. I flipped the trike on its side to get better access to the chain and pulled just a little and it popped right out.  I was then on my way again but I was sure I would not make it to Wytheville in time.

As I had not eaten anything except a couple fruit and grain bars since breakfast I decided I may as well stop and get a late lunch/early dinner at McDonalds.  I finished and had only about 12 miles to Wytheville but had given up on getting there by 5.  For some reason the hamburgers did not again with my system and Frank was not happy.  It was then kind of a race to find a restroom, the sooner the better.  Fortunately I found one at a ball field a couple miles down the road.  Tended to Franks needs and was on the way again.

I rode into Wytheville and found where I was going to camp for the night, a city park right in the middle of the downtown area.  It had a nice shelter to setup under as rain was expected over night.

I did not take many photos on this day as I was feeling rushed but did get a few.  The first two are in the some village of Newbern.  This village is located along the old Wilderness Road, the principal route settlers used to reach Kentucky for more than 50 years.

Early Water Reservoir On Wilderness Road

Early Inn Along Wilderness Road

The next is a photo of the Virginia countryside.

Virginia Countryside

The next photo is that of the rarest but unknown wildflower I have come across.  I have seen a few with white puffy tops but most are this bright yellow. :-)

Rare Unknown Wildflower :-)
Even though this day was frustrating and stressful at times it ended up well.  I got to my destination safely.  The post office was open on Saturday morning (and I knew it was going to be).  All is well that ends well.


  1. Sorry to hear you had such a stressful day. Glad the post office was open on Saturday!

  2. Been googling that wildflower. Still can't find it.