Shenandoah River State Park

We’ve had an unseasonably warm weekend with temperatures getting up into the low 70’s – that’s my newfound Farenheit knowledge talking! For those of us more used to celsius, this means we’ve had a couple of days in the middle of winter where the temperature has gotten over 20 degrees. The perfect opportunity to get outside and do some more exploring.

Today's explorations were of the cycling variety - no surprise to those of you who know my husband well!
Today’s explorations were of the cycling variety – no surprise to those of you who know my husband well!

There are 25 state parks in Virginia and over 500 miles of hiking, biking and horse riding trails. In 2012 over 8 million visitors took advantage of the wide array of spaces looked after by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. We thought we’d do our bit for the 2013 visitor numbers and make a trip to the Shenadoah River State Park. This park is only 30 miles south of Winchester and boasts a mix of easy and challenging trails. Richard is really keen to get the girls used to riding off road as early as possible and Olive is particularly keen to become a mountain biker just like Dad. Edie still rides with her bike attached to Richard’s but we hope it’s not too long before she is flying solo.

Bring it on!
Bring it on!

The carpark was at the top of our chosen trail, which meant a short burst of DH – that’s mountain bike speak for down hill- before the track flattened out. Olive did amazingly well – got off and walked her bike if she felt it was a bit too scary – but by the end of the DH section she was staying on much more than she was getting off.

Setting off on the big DH.
Setting off on the big DH.

The scenery was beautiful and did much to distract me from my nerves – whizzing around the streets of Antwerp on my Dutch bike cannot be compared to navigating a mountain bike down a bumpy trail but I acquitted myself okay and was still on my saddle by the time we reached the bottom.

Taking a break to admire the scenery.
Taking a break to admire the scenery.
Off we go again.
Off we go again.
Wonder if I can hitch my back to Edie's She has a very easy ride!
Wonder if I can hitch my back to Edie’s? Β She has a very easy ride!
Loving the bright green on this tree.
Loving the bright green on this tree.

Down by the river we heard the tapping of a woodpecker on one of the trees – I had to resist the urge to break into the theme song from the Woody Woodpecker Show – and later on we saw one up close. The girls are becoming very keen bird watchers helped in no small part by the bird feeder we have set up in the back garden. For the past couple of days we have had a pair of cardinals stopping by for a snack.

The park is very well equipped, with campsites, RV sites and cabins, so we are definitely going to come back and stay for a weekend when the weather warms up.

Although the sky looks grey, it turned out to be a really beautiful day with lots of sunshine.
Although the sky looks grey, it turned out to be a really beautiful day with lots of sunshine.
Lovely reflections down by the river.
Lovely reflections down by the river.
We thought we spotted deer hooves in the mud here.
We thought we spotted deer hooves in the mud here.

As I write we are only two sleeps away from the birthday of the century – yes it’s the big five for Miss Edie Cate – a birthday she has been desperately awaiting. Check back here after Tuesday to see how she celebrated.

And you’ll be pleased to know I survived my first quilting class – if you’re interested, I’ve written about it on my How to Make an American Quilt page.

Take care everyone. Sending lots of love to you all xxx

4 Replies to “Shenandoah River State Park”

  1. Happy Birthday Edie – By the looks of the things you will be racing your Dad down the mountain by yourself very soon πŸ™‚ Have a lovely birthday and we will try and reach you by phone.

    Lots of love Aunty Helen, Uncle Mark, Grace, Molly and Tomxxx

    PS Did you know that you share your birthday very a very special American dear to all our hearts both in America and all around the world
    – Dr Martin Luther King http://ncronline.org/node/42931/

    1. Hello Waddingtons! Thanks so much for your comments and for the wonderful birthday gift that arrived for Edie. She was so excited to get an amazon box with her name on it! Olive was quite jealous :)The Calico Critters are gorgeous and have fitted in very well with their Sylvanian cousins! Edie’s had a great day – just in the middle of writing about it. I didn’t realise MLK’s birthday was today. The girls have Monday off school as it is MLK day so I just assumed that was his birthday. Edie is in very good company.
      We miss you all and hope you are well xxx

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