I've had it in my mind for a week or so that I would be returning to West Va. for my birthday, specifically to Lost River State Park.
What I did not intend until the last minute was going the long way, and by long I mean roundabout. The scenic route. The one you take only when you get lost or are going somewhere else. Yes, that would be the route I took.
I gave the map a cursory look on Google, but neglected to zoom in. The road Atlas I looked at while at the truck stop was little better. In fact, I thought I had gained clarification. Only when I stopped to ask for further clarification just short of Orkney Springs did I realize the breadth of my (mis)adventure. I recalled a certain unmarked fork in the road, where I zigged instead of zagged and chose the path less traveled. We nearly turned back, but my intrepid and understanding wife, wanting me to get it out of my system and have a good birthday, convinced me otherwise.
I'm glad she did. I enjoyed our return to the park immensely, despite the length of the trip. The cool thing is we got to see parts of Va. we've never seen, much of which was simply breathtaking and some of which was reminiscent of "The Road." The stretch of 42 from Woodstock to Basye is one to remember for sure.
Anyway, Lost River is my favorite state park, an isolated oasis of tranquility and beauty. It is way the hell out for sure, but worth it in spades. I can't say enough about this place, and many others in West Va. So in keeping with the spirit of keeping a place like this unknown and unsullied, let me just state for the record that West Va. sucks and Lost River is the place where unwashed rednecks hang out with banjos.