As I continued south and west on day one of my journey, I was continually surprised to see more and more barn quilts. The trend certainly seems to have caught on.
I’d seen several of the barn quilts in Pocahontas County, West Virginia, and know that county has an established quilt trail — map and guide/listing of quilts to draw people to the area — but there were some barn quilts I hadn’t seen. I also had not noticed barn quilts in Greenbrier and Monroe counties the last time I’d ridden through.
That barn quilt in Pocahontas County, along WV-92 north of Green Bank, is one of the first I’d ever seen up close. That was several years ago, but it is still one of my favorites.
Speaking of Green Bank, I did stop for a quick look at the biggest telescope. It’s hard not to marvel at the size. How big? It supposedly could hold two football fields.
As an aside… I did NOT know that Green Bank Observatory is no longer part of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. You’ll have to read the linked article to find out more.
I do remember having seen this one, which is on US-250 near the intersection with WV-92, but it was raining pretty hard when I saw it the first time, so I hadn’t stopped.
And here’s one I had not seen before. I love the pattern in the paint. (Click on image for a larger view.)
As I was contemplating my trip, I’d thought about making Princeton, West Virginia my first overnight stop, but as I rode on, I was getting tired. I knew I’d be passing through Marlinton to get to US-219, and considered spending the night there, but it was still pretty early in the day. Once in Marlinton, there didn’t seem to be enough for me to do if I did stop. My fear was that I’d book a room, stop and rest, then get bored and kick myself for not moving further along.
So I just stopped for a snack and a drink, which seemed to be all the refreshment I needed, and continued on.
At the risk of sounding repetitive, US-219 through West Virginia really IS a nice road. It is both scenic and fun, with lots of long, smooth sweeping turns interspersed by hills and twisties (think zig-zags). And not much traffic. Of course, I hadn’t encountered much traffic all day.
The next couple images were captured along US-219 north of Hillsboro, West Virginia. I think the barn is on the property of the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace Museum. Check out that unique fence. It’s hard to tell if the cross-wise pickets were meant to be decorative elements, or added as an afterthought to close-in the larger openings.
Here’s a closer look at the barn quilt.
Still further south (Monroe County), I was surprised to see barn quilts on some of the businesses in the town of Union, West Virginia.
And then there was this barn, which I just HAD to stop and photograph.
It was starting to get cloudy and windy, and I could smell rain. I thought for sure I was going to get caught in a thunderstorm, but I didn’t.
The chicken was actually outside of Narrows, Virginia, a little, tiny piece of the state I had to ride through to reach Princeton, West Virginia. I may have just ridden past, but I wanted to check my phone for lodging options in Princeton.
Unfortunately, the signal wasn’t strong enough. So I just rode on into Princeon, figuring I’d take my chances. I’d stayed in Princeton a couple of time previously. It’s off of I-77, so there are lots of hotels, motels, chain restaurants, gas stations, etc. Even a pretty big beef jerky outlet (at least the third one I’d seen that day).
I was headed for a Bojangle’s — I was hungry AND they usually have free wifi — when I turned off the highway and saw this cute little Turnpike Motel. Places like that are great for motorcycle trips because you can park right outside your door, which means you don’t need to make multiple trips to/from your room for purposes of unpacking/packing and readying the bike for a new day of travel.
It was recently refurbished, had a vacancy, and was cheap. It was within walking distance of Bojangle’s, too. Even better, I got to park under a roof (at the suggestion of the lady at the front desk).
My door was the one on the left.
After checking in and getting settled, I walked over to grab some dinner. It always feels good to walk a bit after a long day on the bike (it was close to dark by the time I reached Princeton).
That was the end of day one. It was a good day. 🙂