Day 12: Prince William Forest Park to Fredericksburg

Last night, while at the pavilion in Prince William Forest Park, I decided to book an Airbnb for today since the forecast indicated rain at night. I figured it’s better to get a shower, sleep on a bed, and have a roof to protect me from the rain.

There was a strange man yesterday who came near the pavilion around sunset and starting doing push-ups and other exercises on the dirt ground. I avoided contact with him and waited for him to leave then started to pitch my tent under the pavilion.

It was already dark and I didn’t want to use my headlamp since it’ll attract attention. So I set up my tent in the dark even though it’s been years since I last used it.

First time camping on this trip

It was a cold night with temperature near 40 degrees. My sleeping bag is rated 15 degrees, but I still slept with my clothes on to keep warm. Needless to say, my sleep wasn’t good. The wind made all kinds of noise that disturbed me. 

I woke up at 6:45 AM with the birds chirping as my alarm. After packing up the tent and organized everything, I cooked a package of ramen for the first time on this trip. I knew that there wasn’t a breakfast place nearby so ramen will do.

Ramen for breakfast!

Just when I was putting on the panniers on my bike rack, I noticed the bolt that secures my rack to the frame of the bike is missing on the right side. No wonder I heard some rattling sounds yesterday while riding. The best I could do was to take out a bolt from the top part of the rack and use that as a temporary replacement bolt, even though the bolt was shorter than what it should be. I also noticed that the threads on the frame was stripped, too. The vibration of the bike must have made the bolt come loose. What a way to start my day!

It was around 8:45 AM that I got going. After coming out of the park, I rode on a busy road to get back on route 1, Richmond Highway.

I don’t know what’s worse, pushing and carrying my bike on a hiking trail or riding uphill without any shoulders on a busy road. At least the trail is free of cars. But this time it’s the uphills and the busy traffic without any shoulders. I did enjoy a big downhill that I clocked at 33 mph. That was both fun and scary.

On the country road

I finally got to Fredericksburg around 1 PM. I decided to have some legitimate ramen at Mian Noodle House. I had to built my own bowl with a soup base, noodles, protein, vegetables, etc. It was just ok. I wish they had ready-to-order ramen dishes.

My creation: tonkotsu ramen with pork

After lunch, I went to Bike Works, the only bicycle shop in the downtown area, to get a new bolt on my rack. Andre, the mechanic, did a very thorough job of finding a longer bolt, cleaned up the threading, and fixing my rack. He also tightened the headset since it was loose, according to him. The total came out to only $12. I gave him a $5 tip since I was expecting to pay more than that.

Andre fixing my bike rack

I had to ride about another hour to my Airbnb, which is just north of Cosner’s Corner, a neighborhood south of Fredericksburg. I was very close to the house when Komoot took me to an unrideable trail. I didn’t want to get my shoes wet while crossing a muddy stream with my bike so I had to go back where I came from and walk my bike up a steep hill to get to the main road. Finally, I arrived at the Airbnb around 3:30 PM.

No way to cross without getting dirty!

The Airbnb’s host is a very pretty Filipino girl named Gigi. The inside of her townhouse is so clean and neat that it can be in an architecture magazine. I took a much need shower then went to the Himalayan Heritage Restaurant for some spicy chicken curry and naan. The curry was so spicy that it made my eyes tear up during the entire meal.

This spicy chicken curry made me cry

Yesterday and today I didn’t experience the fatigue feeling from days ago. I don’t know what happened. Did my body adjust? I also started adding a packet of electrolytes during each riding day. Maybe that helped.

Going through the northeast US has been tough on a bicycle, especially with the cars and sometimes the lack of proper cycle ways. I feel like I want to stop cycling before I reach Florida. Maybe at Greensboro, North Carolina, where my friend Crispin is. We had planned on doing a bike ride around Greensboro, but Crispin just had surgery on his wrist, thus cannot cycle for at least two months. I might bail out in Greensboro, but what will I do then? I have no idea. I’m thinking of doing some backpacking, but I’m not sure where yet.

Tonight, I hope to sleep well. I rode 33.7 miles today. I think that’s a good distance for a day’s worth of riding, considering the hills.


  1. Have you watched an of the Youtube videos about cycling the Greenway? There was an informative one done by Regina Yan

    1. Thank you so much, Joan, for the recommendation! I just watched it. Wow, 29 days! I'm definitely not doing that. Not fit enough and carrying too much gear. What an inspirational video!


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