Abandoned house with a Keep Out sign on PHT near Reedville.
I thought today’s hike from Reedville to Heathsville would be easy. I guess because it was a road walk on the bike trail. Boy, was I wrong!

I guess I can’t say it was a hard walk. It was all roads, after all. But here’s the thing. The route was constantly going up and downhill, and a lot of the uphills were those sneaky, long-but-gradual climbs. You know, the kind where you don’t realize you’re walking uphill and think you’re just really losing steam. Eventually you turn around and see you’ve been walking uphill for the last mile or so

In addition, the roads here twist and turn a lot. Combine that with the hills, and these roads sported some nasty cambers that just killed my feet. I had to keep changing sides of the road to get off the really steeply pitched cambers. So yeah, never assume a road walk will be easy.

Heading Out from Reedville

I parked my car at the library in Heathsville, then took an Uber to Reedville. My driver said the folks in Reedville really do the town up on Halloween; every home on the main drag is well decorated. I’d love to see that!

The route here starts on the waterfront, so I enjoyed some nice river views. I wanted better views as I hiked, but private homes lined the street so I could only see the water from a distance. And then I found the Reedville Fishermen’s Museum. It wasn’t open at 8 a.m., but you could walk behind it and onto the dock, so I did get my river views.

Free Ferry!River shot with docks in Reedville, Virginia.

My favorite part of the day came just a few miles in, when I hit the Little Wicomico River. You can only cross this by hailing the Sunnybank Ferry, one of Virginia’s last free ferries. I didn’t see the ferry when I arrived, and no one was around. Hmmm. What to do? But a few minutes later, I saw movement on the water. What I thought was a metal plank across the river with a small shack sitting adjacent was the actual ferry, and it was steaming toward me.

Lonnie Dodson ferried me across. He’s been working the ferry for the last nine years. It was a good thing I arrived at 9:30. The ferry only runs until noon on Saturdays, and it doesn’t run at all on Sundays.

The afternoon was largely uneventful. I enjoyed sun most of the day and cool temperatures, and made it back to my car by 4:30 – enough time so I could drive back to a Walmart in Tappahannock (near my motel in Warsaw) and get some fuel for my stove (when I start camping).

Tomorrow, my friend Colleen comes to join me. We’re old buddies from my days working at the Wisconsin state Capitol, and she now lives in Yorktown.

Snowshoe

Today’s Miles : 21
PHT Miles to Date: 23.4
PHT Miles to Go: =725.6

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©2018 Melanie McManus – All Rights Reserved

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