Back on Hwy 42, I climbed up the rail grade finally reaching Hwy 60 and soon on to Clifton Forge. After restocking on bananas and protein bars, I pushed on through the old railroad town along the Jackson River toward Covington. Island Ford Cave materialized on the roadside and gave a perfect cool resting place for the morning snack. Moving on to Covington, I had a chicken sandwich and ice cream cone then refilled my water bottles before heading south on Hwy 18.
The afternoon ride up Potts Creek was gorgeous in weather and fall colors. The golden and crimson foliage offset by the blue sky above and darkness of the creek was a pallet for any artist. At the first forest road I saw, I turned to climb high above Potts Creek where I setup alongside the gravel path. The sun set in the distant treeline and caught the sky in a hue of pink clouds and baby blue dimming to black.