Before kids, one of our favorite things to do as a couple was to go biking off road. There are a number of rail trails (old railroad beds turned into biking trails) in Virginia that go on for miles and make for an enjoyable ride for casual bikers that aren’t up to a strenuous workout.
One of my favorites is called the “Virginia Creeper” trail and goes from White Top Mountain, down the mountain for 19 miles to Damascus, and then over for another 15 miles to Abingdon, Virginia.
Once the kids came, our biking days were curbed, except for that short period of time when they could ride on the back of our bikes, but this never was very frequent. We had to leave the kids behind (with grandparents or a babysitter), while we went riding together on special occasions, or whenever we got the chance.
So when we talked about what to do for vacation, the idea came up to ride on the Virginia Creeper trail from White Top to Damascus. A daunting 19 mile journey–except for the fact that it was all down hill.
So Tuesday, we parked at the top of the trail (after paying for a shuttle to bring us back to our car) and set off down the trail. The boys did beautifully and were able to keep up and go the distance without any trouble.
We stopped for lunch near a creek and got to sit on the rocks and watch the boys make stick boats to race down the rapids.
We ended the trip with celebratory ice cream.
I didn’t realize how much I had been looking forward to this day until I was riding down the trail, watching everybody in single file. It confirmed in my mind that we are ready to do even more family bike trips. We’ve already started planning the next one.