A Big Week – A Bicycle Tour, The White House, and A Marathon

Author: – Autumn (Janette)

Last week was a big one in our family.

Mr. Autumn and I rode our bicycles from Pittsburgh, PA (shown above) to …..

to Washington, DC where we were met by our son who lives there.  He rode the last few miles with us.  FYI for you music lovers out there.  Our son has a blog relating to music that he publishes once a week called Your Other Big Brother.   You can find it here.

The first three days we followed a trail that was formerly a railroad track.  It followed a river through Pennsylvania and later Maryland.

We crossed the eastern continental divide and……

pedaled through several long tunnels.

There were some amazing views and…..

some historic sites.

Midway through, we had a visit from my parents who were very encouraging.

The final three days of the six day trip were spent on a historic canal path.  We rode on the path that mules used to pull boats along the canal that began in Baltimore and ended in Cumberland, MD.  The trail was very rustic.

We passed 78 locks that were once used to control the elevation levels of the water.

A little house sat near each lock.  That is where the lock masters and their families lived.  The entire canal and tow path are on the National Historic Register.

This was the first bicycle tour in which we have carried our own gear.  Normally on our bike trips, we send our luggage in a van, and it is waiting for us when we arrive at our destination at the end of the day.  We used our touring bikes rather than our road bikes.  Their frames are heavier and can support the weight of the bags.

We averaged 54 miles a day.  Some days we didn’t see another person.  It was like “Deliverance” on a bike.  I was expecting to hear banjos.

The canal trail was really muddy.  We had to concentrate on what we were doing to avoid crashing in the mud puddles, ruts, and rocks.  Luckily, we were able to hose our bikes off when we arrived at a bed and breakfast at the end of each day.

The day after Mr. Autumn and I arrived, our family was given  a private tour of the White House West Wing.  Seeing the Oval Office and the Rose Garden were big thrills for us.  It all made the my crueling bicycle ride worth it.

The following day we got to cheer on our daughter/my blog partner Jordan and her husband as they ran their first marathon.  There were 30,000 runners in this annual Marine Corp Marathon.  Here she is at mile 11.

At Mile 16, they were still smiling.  The last time we saw them before the end was at Mile 20, and they were still full of energy and enthusiasm.  Many runners were suffering at that point.

Their biggest smiles came when they were finished and wearing their medals.  What an accomplishment!

Overall, it was quite a week.  We are all thankful that we have our health and are able to lead such active lives.

Take care.

Linking to Photobucket


  1. donna says

    I’m kinda speechless. Over the years while Jordan babysat for my twin boys she would often talk about the adventures you and your husband enjoyed. I so admire your family. Whether far away destinations or nearby, you not only make it happen ~ but make it wonderful. Thank you sharing these real life snapshots, they inspire me to “just do it”!

  2. Carolyn Rasnick says

    So proud of all of you for your many accomplishments. Sounds like a pretty difficult cycling trip and, the marathon, well…….I can’t even imagine ever being able to complete one of those…..even when I was Jordan’s age!
    Hope you all have many more years of happy trails ahead…..!!!

  3. Jeannette says

    After reading this post, I feel I really need to step it up and make my daily walk longer! lol Very interesting post. You are so right when you have your health and stamina you’ve got it all.
    Your Deliverance comment made me chuckle…very funny.