Monday, June 19, 2017

New River Trail- Fries Junction

 This weekend we celebrated father's day with a family bike ride on the New river trail. We had originally planned to start at the Byllesby Dam, but just as we were parking a full downpour hit us. We sat in the truck a minute to see if it would pass, but it just got heavier and heavier. So we left feeling pretty disappoint that we'd driven so far just to get rained out, however, when we got back to Fries (pronouced freeze)  the skies were clear and blue and it was totally dry. 

So we parked and got on the trail in Fries, and headed in the direction of the Byllesy Dam. The New River trail is great for biking. It's quite flat and well maintained.  Great for a family bike ride.

We spotted this turtle in the middle of the trail and my girl had to stop and move it. i'm pretty sure the turtle was attempting to lay her eggs right in the middle of the trail. She had dug herself a hole. It was a terrible spot as cyclist come through very fast, and their was sign that horses had been on the trail recently too. Hopefully she can find a slightly safer place to lay her eggs. 

i highlighted the areas of the New River Trail we've done either walking or on bike. We still have a quite a bit to complete. The Cliffview, Shot Tower and Foster Falls sections we've done several times. 

At Fries junction we rode over the Trestle Bridge, then came back and continued down the New River Trail. i was expecting some spectacular views from the bridge, but it actually has big wall up on both sides and you can't see anything.

 The view from the bridge is not spectacular.

Once we came off of the bridge we had a much nicer view. There was mist rising from the mountains in the distance from that rain that was coming down that way.  We should have paid attention to that and turned back here, but we didn't. We rode straight into a downpour, that followed us all the way back to the car. 

 Riding back in the rain, really sucked. The rain was cold, and the trail turned to mud making it harder to peddle. We hadn't realized it, but the trail was on a gradual decline on our trip out to the trestle bridge, so when we turned around and road back it was a gradual incline. We were all hurting by the time we got back to the car.

Biking was fun, but i didn't get to enjoy the trail in the same way that i do when we hike.  We passed so many little waterfall i would have liked to have gotten pictures of. We whizzed past wildflowers, and views of the New River.  

We did stop to read a bit about the Grayson Sulphur Springs. It was a popular hotel and mineral water resort. Once located on the west bank of the New River near the mouth of Brush Creek, its site is now covered by the backed-up waters of Byllesby dam.

This was a really nice section to bike. i'd love to come back and walk it, so i can get some better pictures and enjoy the views a bit more. i do love that the New River trial is so good for biking, as we don't have any flat ground at home. As much as i love hiking, riding bikes is a nice change and the kids enjoy it much more than walking so we'll probably be doing a lot more of it this summer.


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