The River Runner Century

Saturday’s weather was so stellar that Felkerino and I agreed to spend the day together out on the bike. I know that must be shocking news to all of you reading this.

Around Hillsboro, VA. Did you know Orville and Wilbur Wright's mom is from there?
Around Hillsboro, VA. Did you know Orville and Wilbur Wright’s mom is from there?

This time of year is wonderful for riding. The humidity has not yet settled into the area, overnight temperatures are high enough that you don’t spend the morning hours in uncomfortable cold, and the days are easily long enough to fit in a century.

The countryside is green and lush, and everything seems to be blooming. I swear I have written a variation of this description for the past three weeks. Well, it continues to be true and I just love it.

This week’s highlights were redbud, apple blossoms, dogwood, and fields full of mustard flowers.

The only downside of all the flowers and greenery are my allergies. Achoo! But I will not be deterred from spending time in what is otherwise an ideal landscape.

MG and apple trees
Apple blossoms, yes! Achoo!

Felkerino and I rode a century that was originally cued by local touring cyclist,  Crista B. The route began in Purcellville, Virginia, and wound its way over to the outskirts of Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, via quiet rolling country roads.

After passing the point where the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers converge, we followed the Potomac for a spell until climbing away from the river and over the Shepherdstown, West Virginia.

Furnace outside of Shepherdstown, WV
Old Furnace Outside of Shepherdstown, WV. We also saw baby geese and their parents here, too!

In case you can’t tell, Felkerino and I love visiting Shepherdstown. It’s a quaint historic town that is home to a small university with a tasty lunch spot (Blue Moon Cafe) and a good coffee shop (Lost Dog Coffee).

From lunch, we followed the Potomac again for a few miles until having to heave-ho away from it at a significant pitch. We then wound our way over to Brunswick, Maryland, for a cup of coffee at Beans and the Belfry.

Mustard flowers near the Potomac
Mustard flowers near the Potomac

We then descended to Point of Rocks, Maryland, and took more roly poly country roads back to Loudoun County, Virginia, passing through Waterford and continuing on until we finished at the place we started from– Purcellville.

After all the riding in recent weeks, Felkerino and I were pretty tired throughout the ride. We stopped around every 15 miles to waste time take pictures, eat a snack, or to hang out. It was pretty great.

Another aspect of this ride that I particularly liked is that it truly feels like a meander.


The River Runner Century is not about taking the most direct route from one point to the next, but rather exploring the area’s country roads. You might even do a little side trip along a road just because it looks interesting and to see where it takes you.

The ride tuckered me out. Even though this route has no mountain climbs, it is definitely hilly (particularly the second half) and required some digging to complete. Also, the accumulation of activity is starting to take its toll. Randoblearies!

It worked out okay, though. We got in a good Saturday ride and today was cloudy so I did not feel guilty about taking a delicious afternoon nap. I could dream happily about the beauty of yesterday and the brilliant rides of summer that are just around the bend.


  1. Did you take the W&OD to get out to Purcellville? I was doing Paul’s Ride for life out there on Saturday. Gorgeous weather! I swa guy on one of those tall bikes on the trail. Those things just look scary! Saw a couple of tandems too!


    • No, we started our ride there at the high school and only rode a couple of miles on it total for the day. Hope you had a great day on Paul’s Ride for Life and that the trail was not too crazy! It was awesome outside. And I agree w/ you… tall bikes are rather scary!


  2. Your rides always look so beautiful. They help inspire me to get out on randos as often as possible (though Audax does have to compete with my other passions of adventure racing, rogaining, running and Scouting)


  3. I have passed through Waterford. That area north and west of Leesburg is great cycling country. My brother lives there so I have an occasional excuse to schlep my bike down there. Purcellville has been a frequent destination.


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