Friday, August 10, 2018

A Day in West Virginia

The Mrs. and I spent the last Saturday in July in West Virginia.  If you've followed this blog, you know that the closest I get to nature and the woods is when I'm playing golf.  I don't think that counts.  I wanted to do a short hike and Harpers Ferry, which sits at the confluence of the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers, came to mind.

Since I don't do any hiking, I didn't even look at how long the hike would take.  Saturday morning I asked my wife if she'd like to go to Harpers Ferry and she said sure.  We had lunch in Arlington and headed out.  The 65 mile drive was pretty easy.

We parked near the river and at the bottom of the Maryland Heights Trail.  I thought that we would be able to drive a lot further up the mountain.  Near the trailhead we found a map that showed that a round trip hike to the Overlook Cliff was 3 miles and would take up to 3 hours!

The Mrs. was not happy.  I had told her that it would be a short and easy hike.  We didn't bring any water and she was still sore from going to the gym the day before.  She didn't want to do the hike.

I tried to persuade her but she stood her ground.  I was wrong about the difficulty of the hike so we decided to split up.  She went and walked by the river and across the bridge and I went up the mountain.  It wasn't an easy hike and it didn't help that I was trying to rush it.  I made several stops along the way.  It was a hot day but the trail was busy.  Plenty of people were leisurely moving up and down the mountain.

I was happy to find out that the hike was only halfway up the hill.  The second half of the hike was downhill.  I finally made it and the view was worth the climb.

As you can see in the video, the rivers had swollen due to rain.

I stayed up there 15 to 20 minutes enjoying the scenery and getting some rest.  On the way back, the first part was not easy since it was uphill.  After that, I practically ran down to the parking lot.  I reunited with the boss lady almost two hours after we split.  

Since I was exhausted, we drove across the bridge to Harpers Ferry to buy some water.  It's a very small town.  It was full of tourists.  I ended up getting a water and a Gatorade.  Then we went for ice cream.  It sure was delicious.

There was still daylight to burn so I suggested we drive over to Charles Town.  I had never been before.  It was only 15 minutes away and I wanted to check out the poker room at Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races.  When we arrived, we saw a lot of people near the track.  They were watching live horse racing.

We wondered over and looked at the horses getting ready for the next race.  I asked the Mrs. which horse looked good to her and she said #1.  I liked #3.  There were less than ten minutes before the race.  I went inside to use the bathroom and decided to place my first ever horse racing bets.

I placed two $5 bets on #1 and #3 to show.  Realizing that it wasn't much of a bet, I also placed two $5 bets on #1 and #3 to win.  I didn't have time to look at the odds and we placed all our trust on the eye test.

When I went back outside, I handed the Mrs. her tickets and we got ready to watch the race.  Check out the video below.

We were pretty happy with the outcome as #1 won and #3 finished third.  After the race we went inside to check out the casino.  The first thing we noticed was that smoking was allowed and the hideous carpet.

We strolled past the poker room.  There was no time for me to actually play.  It looked OK but nothing special.

On our way out, we stopped to claim our race winnings.  On the $20 worth of bets, our profit winnings were $2!  I guess our horses were heavy favorites.

We watched one more race before heading for the car.

It was a wild and wonderful day in West Virginia.


  1. You're right, the view where you hiked to was definitely worth is. Thx for the pics.

  2. That hike nearly killed me last year. I started off at the visitors center at Harpers Ferry National Park. Made a .4 mile hike down through the woods to the trail leading into Harpers Ferry. From there, it was a 2.2 mile run to the start of the trail up the mountain. Hiked up and down, which I believe was a total of about 5 miles. Then ran back 2.2 miles to the trail leading back to the visitors center and had to make the .4 treck back uphill to my car. Total distance was about 10 miles. Afterwards, I went to the Appleeby's across from the Casino for dinner. Ended up booting in the bathroom. Not sure I'd try it again.

    1. Wow, I have no right to complain! PPP, bring back the blog! I think you wrote about HP once or twice before.

  3. "The Mrs. was not happy. I had told her that it would be a short and easy hike." Yeah - my wife tried to pull tht b.s. on me. I still have a scar on my arm from that hike.