To cross from Ohio to Pennsylvania, my route took me across the narrow northern arm of West Virginia... about a day’s ride in our 27th state. Circumstances would again prove that idiom about the best laid plans, when instead of being in the state for one day, Apollo and I stayed six days.
Apollo and I crossed the Ohio River at Wheeling, WV. Our first stop was at the Wheeling YWCA, where their summer camp kids all came out to meet Apollo and ask all their questions about horses.
Our stop for the night (or as it turned out, nights) was in Bethany. Apollo stayed at the Bethany College equestrian center, and I stayed nearby with Amy, one of their staff members. The college is beautiful, and Apollo enjoyed his giant pasture.
Apart from the college (which takes up the majority of the town), Bethany is known for being the place where a Christian denomination (First Christian Church, Disciples of Christ) was founded. I visited the home of its founder, and saw the historic second church location as well. This was of special interest for me, because this was the church denomination in which I was baptized!
Then, the weather turned dangerous. A major heat wave was hitting the region, with a heat index (temperature plus humidity, similar to “real feel”) in the 100’s. It was way too hot to safely do anything outside except sit in a swimming pool. So that’s what I did, and also a bit of sightseeing: the lovely old buildings of Wheeling were a highlight, as well as the market district and historic Oglebay.
Of course I also had to eat, and enjoy the local flavors! In this area, they serve salads with fries on top. I tried one with waffle fries, it was a delicious idea.
Finally, the weather improved and we were able to get back on our way. It was a fun week, and I’m grateful I was able to experience so much more of West Virginia than I had planned!