Almost heaven, West Virginia
Blue Ridge Mountains
Yes, this is the area of which John Denver sang – the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia, where the Potomac meets the Shenandoah at Harpers Ferry. Founded by Robert Harper in 1747, it became famous as the site of abolitionist John Brown’s raid in 1859 (he whose body lies mouldering in its grave). The Lower Town today is preserved as a National Historic Park and, across the Potomac, you can climb Maryland Heights (if you get to the top, you’ll be doing better than President Lincoln who had to give up) for views of the town and the confluence and some interesting Civil War history. This is where we started our recent vacation.
We stayed in Laurel Lodge, a charming B&B in an Arts and Crafts house full of eccentric curios, lovingly tended by Chris and Ed. The ample breakfasts were delicious and everything in them was locally sourced – the first peaches of the year in honey and rosemary syrup were outstanding. Coming home to a “Jamaica on the Potomac” cake (very rummy and very yummy) was not to be sniffed at either. For other meals, the town and neighbouring Bolivar have plenty of places to eat, and we were particularly taken with the local beer served in Private Quinn’s pub.
Take me home, country roads….
….well, no actually, it was on to Virginia and Shenandoah National Park. I do hope I haven’t given anyone an ear-worm!