I grabbed my bags first thing in the morning, got into my car and headed west towards the Appalachian Mountains for my next stage of the trip. Having done the city and the historical sites, it was now time for the wilderness. On the way I stopped at Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello. It is located near Charlottesville, set on a hill in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. It was a long 2.5 hour drive covering about 160 miles. Thomas Jefferson was the main author of the US constitution, be was a man who was interested in science, history, culture and agriculture. Thomas grew many crops, including tobacco and vegetables at his home at Monticello. The grounds were extensive with beautiful views over the surrounding landscape. Thomas Jefferson was buried here after his death at the family cemetery on his lands.
I then had a further 60 miles to drive to get onto the skyline drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway to reach Big Meadow Lodge, my next stop for 2 nights. It was a long drive as the speed limit was 35 mph around bendy roads through the Appalachians. I finally reached the lodge around 8.30 pm after several stops at breath taking viewpoints. I checked in just in time to sit for dinner, there was also a country and western singer in the bar where I had my last glass of wine before settling in my cabin for the night. This was a lovely place at night, it had many log cabins surrounding a warm looking lodge, and Kinkade style yellow lighting from the other cabins shining amongst the trees. Before going to bed I lit the open fire and fell asleep in the flickering yellow glow and cracking sound of the flames.