Roadtripping to West Virginia – Thoughts on the Slab

Roadtripping to West Virginia – Thoughts on the Slab

When you stop and think about all of the ways that you have changed as a person over your riding lifetime, it’s surprising. For me, wherever I’m at seems like where I’ll always be. When you’re 23 and riding around on sportbikes being an asshole, you can’t imagine life in any other way.  I don’t know if that is a symptom of youth or a personality trait. My own progression over the years still catches me off guard, when I am struck by a moment of clarity. This probably has little to do with riding itself but more with the evolution of a person. headed to west virginia

The Dreaded Slab

Or… Maybe Not So Much?

To be clear ~ I don’t enjoy droning along on the slab.  Buuuuut there are times when I simply don’t hate it either. Could this be an evolution caused by circumstance? Maybe. Usually when I have to do it means I’m going somewhere. Highway stints become a means to an end. And as such I guess I’ve learned that at times it’s “fine.” These long rides become time to think, to look at the clouds, to wonder about what’s coming next.

As we hummed along route 78 heading west, the skies began to break. A lightness behind the cloud began to filter through the grey skies. I kept reminding myself that even though the highway ride wasn’t ideal, it was still worthwhile. In a few short hours, we would find ourselves picking and choosing between the wiggly roads of West Virginia.

Enjoy the ride. Always.

bottle caps we got on our trip to west virginia

8 Replies to “Roadtripping to West Virginia – Thoughts on the Slab”

  1. While twisties are exciting, riding the slab can have its own appeal. I get very meditative on highways and my mind wanders to interesting new places.

  2. Oh the slab! That is indeed a familiar sight to these eyes, mind, body and soul. I think the sky and the beautiful country all around help to bring out the internal beauty of the slab. At the moment though in Pennsylvania, there isn’t much of this thing called a slab left, it has more so transformed in to what we now call “pot holes”. They have swallowed up most the slab!

    Safe travels sister! Hope you get a chance to go through the New River Gorge. You can’t go through WV, without seeing it. Magnificent sight!

  3. We don’t have too many of those little twisty roads so the two lane highways are our version of “slabs” and just as boring. Though the view sometimes makes up for it.

  4. Still not a fan of the super slab, but when we need to get somewhere a little quicker than the back roads we’ll hop onto the freeway for an exit or two to make up some time.

    Sometimes they are just a necessary evil for getting from one great road to another.

  5. Indeed, it seems that both types of roads (if road types can be so simplified) have critical life lessons to teach: Slabs promote meditation, and twisties require the rider to live in the moment, to be aware and alert and responsive in that moment.

    Meditate! Live in the moment! These are the lessons; the roads are the teachers; we are the students. Dammit, we owe it to the lessons and to the teachers to be attentive students! I just wish I could spend more time in the classroom.

    Thank you, Fuzzy, for the great post.

  6. Fuzzy:

    sometimes there is no alternative when you have limited time. On my trip last year to the Atlantic, the plan was to take the slab to just “get to the other side” and take backroads from there. It gives you time to think and relax. You have to be alert taking the twisties, not so much on a straight road at constant speed and you get to do a lot of problem solving when you are alone. The dynamic of riding solo are different than when you have a riding buddy, or two. I find that you have to be more cautious as you have no backup system should things go wrong

    bob
    A weekend photographer or Riding the Wet Coast

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