Saturday, October 26, 2013

Fredericksburg, VA

Another glorious day on the road! 

Though it was 29 degrees when I got up this morning, the GDB was snug and toasty.  The high crept up to 59 with a day-long clear blue sky.  Perfect.  All along US-60, I drove through a gentle slow-motion barrage of falling leaves.

Blazing golds, mostly.

And, to add to the excitement, I found a rock that looks like a potato!  Or is the other way around?

On the way to Fredericksburg National Battlefield, some 125 miles away, I detoured to Sam's for the cheap stuff.  No doubt this will be the record-low fuel price for this trip.

But still ...... Ouch

The battlefield was rather hard to find.  It's nestled firmly inside present-day Fredericksburg, amid narrow streets.

I've mentioned before that military parks are not my favorite National Park sites.  It's not just the sad still silence, but military campaigns are one part of history that, for some reason, I just can't wrap my mind around.

This is so odd because my brother is a military historian.  The bulk of his writing has to do with troop movements and such.

Shameless plug: this is his latest book.

Anyway, when I try to tackle military battles, my eyes glaze over, then I get a headache.  Next, the internal bleeding starts.  Okay, well, it's not that bad.

But even I can understand what happened at Fredericksburg in December 1862.  Union troops attacked Confederate soldiers perched on a ridge - fortified, well-armed, and ready.  The Union soldiers hadn't a chance.  Over 18,000 casualties.  This defeat, early in the War, was humiliating for the Union and it solidified Lee's leadership on the field of battle.

There was a walking trail highlighting the significant positions.

And of course

There are many unknown soldiers here.  The top number signifies the plot, the bottom notes the number of bodies.

On to DC

I landed at another Wal-Mart for the night here in F-burg.  I called Cherry Hill Campground and they do have some campsites available beginning tomorrow.  Not sure how long I'll be there, but I'll take full advantage of the free shuttle to the Metro station.

I'm unaccustomed to staying in one place for so long and it occurs to me that I need to stock up on groceries since I won't be hunting-gathering every night.  I'll do that first thing tomorrow.

It's only about 70 miles to College Park, MD via the DC area.  Glad I'm making the drive on a Sunday. I guess that's the reward for not planning ahead - dumb luck.


  1. I love how the light makes the first two photos feel so alive!

    I will not dare show Ron your gas prices. He might cry. :D

    I also can't wrap my mind around war strategies. To me, battle sites are overwhelmingly sad when I consider man's inhumanity to man. (Man in the old-time sense of humanity in general.)

    So glad your Roadtrek stays toasty warm no matter what the temperature is outside.

    And YAY that a campsite with free shuttle service is available!

  2. I wish I only had a $72 ouch every time I fill up. ;)

  3. Yea, my ouch usually stops at a higher price too, but not as high as Judy's would be! Fall colors...sigh...we don't have that here...still green. Then it all just dies. Safe travels!

  4. I'm a bit of a history nut, but yes the fields leave a very sad feeling. to many unknowns. To be buried that way with no name to the marker.

    Your pictures are really great the colors make me want to get moving. By time I am ready to roll it will be over for sure.

    Safe travels and hope you find more cheap gas. It isn't even that cheap here.

  5. Remembering to stock up on groceries before parking awhile is a real challenge. I have food but could use another box of Kleenex? Good thing I also have a stash of cotton hankies.


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