Posts Tagged ‘Gettysburg’

This byway is 180 miles of American history. Stretching from Gettysburg, PA to Monticello, VA the byway covers sites and history from the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, multiple Presidential homes, plus 18 National and State parks.  By motorcycle, this ride is a fun way to learn and honor American national heritage.

The majority of Hallowed Ground Byway is US Route 15 which runs right through our hometown.  This made it an easy decision for a motorcycle ride (like we need an excuse for a ride). 

While this should have been an easy long weekend ride for us it was anything but easy. Because of Covid and the changing quarantine restrictions we had to do this ride over 3 seasons of the lost year of 2020. We started our ride, of the Hallowed Ground Byway, at the Gettysburg Battlefield in the spring.

Part 1 – Gettysburg, PA to Leesburg, VA

Gettysburg by motorcycle is fun and it would be extremely easy to spend several days touring the battlefield and the town. You will not be the only motorcycle there, it is surprising how many folks ride their “iron” horses to the national battlefield. I highly recommend that you take a bus tour of the battlefield as the guide will provide a running commentary of what happened at each stop as well as the sites between stops.

Gettysburg by motorcycle is fun and it would be extremely easy to spend several days touring the battlefield and the town. You will not be the only motorcycle there, it is surprising how many folks ride their “iron” horses to the national battlefield. I highly recommend that you take a bus tour of the battlefield as the guide will provide a running commentary of what happened at each stop as well as the sites between stops.

At the time we rode this leg of the Hallowed Ground Byway most of the historic sites were open with very tight restrictions. Many of the indoor facilities were closed but you could still visit the outdoor sites.

I cannot speak to a lot of regarding local accommodations in Gettysburg. Being only a little over an hour from home we did not need to stay overnight. There are a lot of hotels, campgrounds, and such but with the quarantine limitations in place, few were open. Restaurants were mostly restricted in Pennsylvania and less so in Maryland (at that time).

The day of the ride was overcast and cool. The motorcycle was running well, and we were ready for a day behind bars.  We rode around most of the Gettysburg Battlefield stopping a few of key points of the battle before heading south on the byway.

The ride south from Gettysburg is an easy county ride on both 2 and 4 lane roads.  There are MANY, MANY places to stop along this leg of the Hallowed Ground Byway for example:

National Museum of Civil War Medicine

Multiple covered bridges

Antietam National Battlefield

Multiple State Parks

Vineyard, Breweries and Distilleries

Monocacy National Battlefield

Catoctin Mountain Scenic Byway

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal

Unfortunately for us most everything was closed or very restricted. This day was more about the ride and being with each other than about the sites.  One thing that is true is the couple that rides together tends to stay together. On this daytrip we had a great time, just the two of us.

The next leg will cover the Hallowed Ground Byway from Leesburg to Montpelier, home of President James Madison.

Ride On, Ride Safe


Day 2 started with breakfast in the Hotel (Gettysburg Country Inn and Suites).  The eggs were……weird, all uniformly round and the same thickness. It was if they had come out of one of those automatic pancake machines.  The taste???…well with the three scopes of salsa I applied they were barley ok (Debbie did not like them at all). 

Our ride around the Gettysburg area started with a trip to the Jennie Wade house. Jennie was the only civilian who was killed during the battle.  She was shot dead while baking bread for the Union soldiers encamped around the home.  It was a stray shot that went through two doors and killed her instantly.  Her story was quite inspiring during and after the war, I highly recommend you take a few minutes to check it out 

After our docent led tour of the Jennie Wade house we rode back to the Seminary Ridge Museum.  We did not get a chance to see the entire museum on day one and wanted to finish the tour.  There was a lot of neat history on display. 

Debbie wanted to have taco pizza for lunch but the local Pizza Hut does not make that kind of pizza so she was quite disappointed.  Subway was her second choice so that is where we went. 

ijustwant2ride.comAfter lunch we rolled out to Mr. Ed’s Elephant Museum.  If there is an elephant toy, figurine, picture, painting of any size it is likely in Mr. Ed’s collection.  In addition to the elephant museum, Mr. Ed’s is also a candy store with a large selection of old school and newer candy as well as homemade fudge. 

From Mr. Ed’s we decided to ride to Jack’s Mountain Bridge. It is your typically ijustwant2ride.comstandard covered bridge but, the ride up and over the mountain was a lot of fun.  Nice cruiser style riding with sweeping turns and quick elevation changes.  It was short but a lot of fun, we rode it twice! Make sure to check out the video of our ride over Jack’s Mountain.  

Oh and I got a lot of comments about my hat from day one.  I was able to come up with a selection of statements for anyone that mentioned the hat (all in good fun), such as: 

Be careful or I will let the flying monkeys loose!

I have my eye out for my replacement.

I am a big believer in equal rights, there is a good chance a women will get the hat!

Whomever gets the hat next will have a hard time looking this good!

The highlight of the evening was being able to get rid of the hat! 


To see what happened on day one check out that post!

This year Debbie and I decided to try out the national Harley Davidson HOG Rolling Rally.  It has been occurring for the last seven years and this year it is close to home. The theme for this year is “History in the Hills”. 

The start of the rally is Gettysburg, PA and it end a week later in Oak Ridge, TN.  In between there will be the chance to stop at numerous points to fulfill the title of “History in the Hills”. 

Today was the rally registration sign in, a trip to a special event at the Seminary Ridge Museum and the kickoff diner. Our sign in point was Battlefield Harley Davison. It was well organized and took us know time to get signed in, collect our kit of items and talk with some of the folks who are participating in the ride. 

I do have something negative to say about Battlefield HD.  When have been here several times over the years and have always found the folks polite and friendly, willing to go give a hand.  Today that promise of the past did not hold course.  I had forgotten to check the preload on my motorcycles rear shocks and could use a pound or two of additional air to get a better ride.  In the trip from the house to Gettysburg I realized that I needed the additional air and thought I would be able to borrow a pump to add the additional pressure.  NOPE, the service representative said that someone had “borrowed” their pump in the past and did not bring it back thus they did not have a pump for me to use.  Hummm, a complete service center did not have a pump to add air to a motorcycle shock. 

After that we road over to our hotel to check-in.  NOPE, the room is not read, come back after 3PM. Oh and do not park your motorcycle in front of the hotel. We reminded not to park out front at least 3 times.  OK Country Inns and Suites of Gettysburg, I get it you don’t want us to park out front. 

So onto Seminary Ridge and the museum.  We have been to Gettysburg many times and have never been to this museum and plan to take the full tour on day two.  Today the HOG folks (the tour is run my RUSH LLC) had arraigned a special presentation for the group.  We were broke in 4 groups of about 40-50 people and had a round robin education on Civil War soldiers backgrounds and the 1st day of the battle, ambulance wagons, the Seminary itself and a demonstration of how Civil War soldiers formed and marched.  It was quite nice. 

After the presentation were over we rolled over to the Pike Restaurant for the welcome dinner.  The food was good and the folks we shared our table with were awesome.  We had two highlights during the dinner, I was chosen (because I pulled a small prank) to be the first to wear the “HAT”.  The hat is the stereotypical “hillbilly” had from the comics and shows like “Hew Haw”.  I was told that last year the hat was a lobster, so at least I do not have to wear seafood.  I get to pass the hat on to someone else tomorrow….. Let’s see who that will be. 

The other highlight was that we won a $25 Harley Davison gift certificate.  All said we have had a great day and are looking forward to tomorrow’s events.


This is another great ride (I just said that, right)!  The Battlefield Run is about 110 miles long and rides through four states (Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania) ending at Battlefield Harley Davidson in Gettysburg.

The name comes from, I think, the fact that it rolls through several Civil War Battlefields including Antietam, Charles Town, Shepherdstown, and Gettysburg.  The name is also representative of the charity it supports, the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. Which provides college scholarships the surviving children of fallen Special Operations Forces.

Debbie and I only discovered this ride two years ago.  It is a cause close to our hearts (I spent 10 years in the Army Special Operations Command) and is a great ride (I said that, right?).  If you can attend, please do!