Sunday, May 6, 2012

Picnic at Meem's Bottom Bridge

For a very long time, Ann has wanted me to take her to see Meem's Bottom Bridge, one of the few remaining covered bridges in Virginia, in Shenandoah County just south of Mt. Jackson. And Saturday being the big climax of the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival in Winchester, it seemed like a great day to escape from the madness, have a quiet picnic away from the crowds, and take in the bridge.

One problem with our planned picnic was that we're still in winter mode at home with nothing but red wine on hand, not exactly what the doctor ordered for light picnic fare on a warm, muggy day that seemed to promise to become really hot. And after 8am on Saturday morning, it would be impossible to reach the restaurant to grab some white wine: the streets are all barricaded in advance of the big parade.

Finally it dawned on me that we could avoid Winchester altogether by heading south on 522 to Front Royal and thence by 340 to Glen Manor Vineyards where we could get some Petit Manseng and some Sauvignon Blanc. On our way out the door, we put together a small feast of casalingo, chorizo, cheese, olives, grapes, and a few slices of lamb terrine. Ann baked a delicious loaf of bread for the day and it rode south with us still cooling in the back seat. Neoprene wine insulating bags, check; corkscrew, check; blanket, check; napkins, check; bottles of water, check; knife, check.

And so we arrived at Glen Manor and chatted with both Jeff and Kelly for a few minutes before following the south fork of the Shenandoah River to Luray via Browntown and Bentonville. Wine, check.

At Luray we took 211 west past the Caverns and climbed up Massanutten Mountain from Page Valley through New Market Gap and down into the main part of the Shenandoah Valley to New Market. With Great North Mountain on our left and Signal Knob on our right, we headed north on the old valley pike from New Market towards Mt. Jackson. Meem's Bottom Bridge lies just south of Mt. Jackson over the north fork of the Shenandoah River.

Turning west off the pike, we drove down the long allée of sugar maples to the bridge. Once there under the shade of a massive sugar maple and an even more massive black walnut, we realized that it was a touch chilly. The day had turned out overcast, cool, and threatening rain, but it sure didn't start that way.

And we also realized: wine glasses, uh, uh, no check! Doh! Jeff's 2011 dry Petit Manseng is a thing of beauty. It is hard to imagine a more perfect picnic wine and I imagine we will sell a lot of it at the restaurant this summer.

She's a Happy Girl!
200-Foot Arch Truss: Pretty Cool
I Love This Shot and This Woman!


  1. The last shot is my favorite as well. Like I said the other night, looks like an album cover.

  2. Wow! You guys definitely know how to have fun. This has just been added to our summer to-do list.

  3. @Jane, with only one day off a week, we have to maximize our free time. Having fun is the only way to go! If you're not having fun, what are you doing????


The Girls Do Oregon

I haven't had much time or will to update the blog for the past few months. Play time has been on hold: we're in a brand new house w...