Floyd Travelogue

 

Did a three-day motorcycle trip through the Shenandoahs to Blacksburg, Floyd and Alderson, West Virginia—in the saddle about 8 hours each a day. I needed to get away!

 

The next few shots show early fall colors along the Blue Ridge.

 

 

 

 

 

And through the miracle of time-lapse photography:

 

 

Didn’t take any shots in Blacksburg (home of Virginia Tech). With all the oak trees and undergrads, it reminded me oddly of Stanford and Mission Viejo. Would like to go back—a fun and beautiful place.

 

Floyd is a small town about 30-40 miles east of Blacksburg. The next few shots show the downtown area and the surrounding farm country.  My grandmother was born in the Floyd county jail in the 1860s (my great-grandfather was sheriff).  I’m related to half the county—the Slusher, Decker, Bowman families--and am feuding with the other half.

 

 

 

Founded in the 1830s, Floyd today has a booming economy based on churches, mortuaries and yard sales.  There’s a factory nearby, but it’s for lease.

 

 

The jail was torn down in the 1950s and replaced with the courthouse shown below.

 

 

I told my friends to just shoot me if I came back from this trip craving ribs. I’m still off the pork BBQ, but I’ve accultured enough to like grits. (But then, I add cardamom to make “cracker kheer”.)

 

 

The family isn’t forgotten—the sign is “Slusher Store Rd.”

 

 

 

Went to a town festival in Lewisberg W. VA.  Didn’t take any shots of the festival, but did go to the nearby Greenbrier River, shown below in late afternoon sun.

 

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory at Green Bank West VA has the Reber Telescope in front.  It was one of the first radio telescopes, built by Grote Reber (my grandfather’s name, but not sure if he’s related) and donated to NRAO in 1937.  Grote then became interested in VLF signals, and is living today in Tasmania, one of the few places where the 1-2 Hz range gets through the ionosphere.

 

 

zAnd here it is:

 

 

The 100-meter dish in the distance is the world’s largest steerable array.