Sunday, October 16, 2011

When the Cows Come Home

I've been a bad blog owner. I know.

This has been a crazy year. In hindsight, I know it wasn't the best year to launch a blog. But it seemed like a good idea at the time. Honest.

I knew we'd be moving during 2011. What I didn't know was how much time that little undertaking would require. First, we had to get the house ready to put on the market. Then figure out how to sell it (we didn't want to pay a realtor). Of course, we also had to find a new house. And pack all of our stuff. The move itself only took two days. But then there was (still is!) the unpacking...

The good news is, we now live MUCH closer to the mountains. How close? Just 35 miles from the northern entrance to Skyline Drive in Front Royal, Virginia. It's about the same distance from our house to the entrance at Thornton Gap. Sweet, right?

We still have the WV place, too. So next year, we'll be spending more time in the saddle than ever.

I hope you'll stick with me.  Things should get immeasurably better. At the very least, posts will be much more frequent! :-)

Although we're still unpacking (and will be for quite a while, I think), we took a break this weekend and went to the WV place.

We hadn't been there since August.


Even though the weather wasn't fabulous, I just HAD to ride.

Fall has hit West Virginia.

Temperatures were reasonable (mid-60s), but it was really windy.
When I set out, I didn't have a destination in mind. But as every rider knows, it isn't the destination. It's THE RIDE. So it only made sense to head for my absolute favorite local route... Grassy Lick Road.

Soon enough, thoughts of Grassy Lick led to visions of Oreos. Not Oreo cookies, Oreo cows.

There's a small herd of them living along North River Road in Hardy County, just west of Bean Settlement. I smile every time I ride past. I can't help it. I like cows. And what's cooler than an Oreo cow?

This cow is missing its cream.
I don't know much about cows. But I do know that Oreo cows (aka Belted Galloways) are supposed to have a white middle. See that cow on the far right in the picture above? That's an Oreo. This black one isn't an Oreo, but it was very friendly.

It never fails to amuse me how cows react when I stop along the road beside their field. I mean, think about it. They see all manner of vehicles riding past their pastures all the time. Apparently not many stop.

How do I know? Because every time I do stop, I get stared at. For real. Totally the cow equivalent of the WTF look.

It isn't confined to Oreo cows either.

See what I mean? These were different cows in a pasture of their own further east on North River Road.

"Whoah, what is that thing?"
These two big, brown cows live along Grassy Lick Road.

Speaking of Grassy Lick, check out this little shack that sits near the intersection of Grassy Lick and Horn Camp Road.

Small shack covered with hubcaps on one side, old license tags on two sides, and not a plumb wall on the place.
I'm thinking there has to be a story behind that one. But there aren't any houses within sight, so I wouldn't even begin to know who to ask.

On that note, back to the cows...

Nosiest cow ever.
A little further north on Grassy Lick Road was this ever-so-curious cow. It didn't take its eyes off me the whole time I was there.

"Yo, D. Check this out. One of those moving things stopped."
It wasn't the only curious cow. But it was the only one that stared at me the entire time.

Even when I moved to focus on other cows, its eyes followed me.

 It was sort of creepy.

At one point, I decided to ignore it. But look at these other cows.

Wasn't there a movie or something called The Hills Have Eyes?

These hills had lots of eyes.

And still, that first cow stared.

Thanks for sticking with me folks. I'll be a more-frequent contributor, I promise.

In the meantime, if you have any questions about this area, are considering a ride, are wondering why you should consider a ride here, etc., let me know. I love questions. And sharing. So if there's ever anything you'd like to know, ask away.

On another note... did you notice the Appalachian Tours web site isn't working? It's not. Another of my not-so-bright ideas was to change web hosts during this whole move process. Yep, right in the middle. I know what's wrong, I just haven't had time to fix it. But I will. Soon.

Thanks again for your patience!


SonjaM said...

You were busy with other stuff, that's good! A blog shouldn't determine your life. Thank you for the introduction to the term Oreo cow. Funny!
I have never associated the look of cows as creepy... that is until you mentioned 'the hills have eyes' ;-)

Brady said...

Good luck keeping up on it in the future, blogs can be a lot of work!

Your photos really make me miss Virginia, we used to get on the BRP at Waynesboro. We missed all the colors this year. Oh, I loved fall in Virginia. Winter may be boring, but fall is so beautiful.

Behind Bars - Motorcycles and Life

bobskoot said...


I know what you mean about Cows always staring at you, sort of like horses always pointing their bums at you. They seem so curious but if you approach them, they usually back away.

Riding the Wet Coast