Posts Tagged ‘US Route 15’

photo by warren massey

C&O Canal Point of Rock MD

Location – Point of Rocks

Mile Marker – 48

Historical CommentsPoint of Rocks is one of the sites where the B&O Railroad and the C&O Canal fought over the right away as the pass between the river and the cliffs were very narrow.  They eventually reached a compromise that also saw a wall erected between the rail line and the canal towpaths so that the mules pulling the barges would not be frightened.

During the Civil War, the town, canal and railroad made tempting targets for the confederates operating in Virginia.  The rail station, still in use, was built in 1876. Find out more about this stop at the C&O Canal Trust website.

Ride to Site – This stop on the canal is located just off of and even under US Route 15.  The trains at this location run often so be alert for the oncoming locomotives.

Amenities – picnic tables, boat ramp, restrooms, parking.  Nearby gas and food.

Road Conditions (from main road) – Paved but with pot holes.

Railway Situation – Ground level

Parking Lot Conditions – Paved.

Main Attraction – Boat ramp, Route 15 bridge for pictures, rail station for pictures, Lock House 28 is available for lodging on the canal but you would have to park the motorcycles about a mile away.

My Thoughts – Great site for pictures and a nice stop when riding in the area.

Map Picture by Warren massey

The Bridges of Pennsylvania,,, A motorcycle ride.

Foggy start to the day

This past weekend Debbie and I rode with the Northern Virginia Motorcycle Club (NOVA MC) to see and ride through a bunch of covered bridges in Pennsylvania.  This was an all-day ride; we left the house on a foggy Saturday morning at a few minutes after six AM to get to the rally point.  The club met up outside a Starbucks in Chantilly, VA before rolling out for the day.

Heading north on US Route 15 we crossed into Maryland at Point of Rocks passed through Frederick and quite soon entered Pennsylvania and the first stop. This bridge was literally just across the state line off of Route 15.  I am not sure where we stopped or the name of the bridge but the picture is below. From that point on we attempted to capture a picture of the name or historical marker.

After a bit we rolled out to see the other bridges.  About one o’clock we stopped for lunch at The Old Mountain Stone Inn in Bloomfield, PA.  The food was good, the company better but the show was the best (LOL).  About half way through our lunch a poker run arrived and they were having a lot of fun which made it a lot of fun for us to watch!!

The Bridges of Pennsylvania,,, A motorcycle ride.

Pennsylvania Amish country.

During lunch we also noticed that the incoming weather was getting much worse and decided to cut the ride a “bit” short.  We decided to visit the longest covered bridge (271 feet) in PA, the Academia Bridge.  From there we jumped on PA Route 75, which passed through the Pennsylvania Amish country.

Storm Chaser Powers ACTIVATE!

It was on Route 75 were we got the wettest!  While we had experienced sprinkles and light rain we got a downpour, and of course nowhere to really pull over.  We finally reached a gas station where Debbie and I did the group a big favor; we put on our rain suits, which normally guarantees the rain will stop.  We split off from the main group to head home shortly after that stop and we might have had ten rain drops from that point on!  I hope the others fared as well!

About Northern Virginia Motorcycle Club

NOVA MC is a “Meetup.com” group that “is for motorcycle enthusiasts who are interested in taking short jaunts, usually on weekends, around Virginia’s highways and byways.”  Debbie and I discovered them about a year ago and this was our second ride with the club.  I have to say that we have tried to ride more with them but life, schedules and other events have conspired to limit our experience with the club.  BUT, I can say that without hesitation, if your live in Northern Virginia and want to ride in a motorcycle agnostic environment and want to have a good time, check them out!

I slipped in two afternoon motorcycle rides in this past weekend. I was hoping for longer rides but the weather was very fickle with strong thunderstorms projected for both days. Counter to what is typical for my rides….we did not get wet.

On Saturday I rode with guys from the neighborhood (Don, Charles, and Don’s brother-in-law Gordon who is visiting from Georgia).  We pulled out of Leesburg, VA about 11AM headed south on US Route 15.  It was not long before we had our first exciting moment of the day!

We were less than five miles south of town when an accident occurred right next to us.  Two motorcycles were stopped to make a left hand turn with a SUV stopped behind them.  A car, whose driver must have not have been paying attention, skidded hard into the SUV, which, luckily, did not hit the motorcycles. The car began skidding as it passed Don (on the lead bike) and hit the SUV as I passed (I was the trail bike).  I pulled hard to the right to distance myself from the shrapnel from the collision.  There had to have been less than two seconds from skid to crash.

The folks on the motorcycles stopped to turn left were very lucky the SUV was behind them it was a close call.  The silver car would have hit and killed them; there is no doubt in my mind!  We thought about stopping to help but the location really prohibited stopping on the right and Route 15 North had dozens of cars backed up immediately so we rode on.

Lunch at Red Horse Tavern

Red Horse Tavern

At the intersection of Route 15 and US Route 50 we turned west and headed to our lunch stop in Middleburg (established in 1787).  This part of Route 50 passes through “serious” horse country, it is nothing to see Polo matches, jumping competitions and such as you ride along. In Middleburg we had lunch at the Red Horse Tavern, which was ok and reasonably priced.

From the Tavern we left Middleburg and traveled through multiple back roads finally ending up on Snickersville Road (a Virginia Byway).  We followed this road to its intersection of Route 7 where we turned east back to Leesburg and Payne’s Biker Bar then back to home.

On Sunday Debbie and I rode one of the local “loop” rides we like to take.  It is a 45 mile ride that essentially begins and ends at Point of Rocks, Md.  I will write about this particular route at a later date.

Lunch at Red Horse Tavern

Red Horse Tavern