On Friday, five friends from the hiking club and I traveled to Virginia from our homes in Upstate South Carolina. Our hiking club leader, Martha and her husband Melvin, had rented the bunk house at Grayson Highlands State Park for three nights. Our intentions were to ride a 17 mile section of the Virginia Creeper Trail on day one, and then do some day hiking on Saturday and Sunday.
The Virginia Creeper Trail is 34 miles long. It stretches from Whitetop Station, through the town of Damascus, and ends at Abingdon, Va. It passes through the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area and runs along Whitetop Laurel Creek.
We arrived in Damascus, Va. in the early afternoon, rented our bikes and were soon shuttled to Whitetop Station where we would begin our bike ride.
As the trail descends towards Damascus, it crosses a number of trestle bridges.
This is the view from the top of one of the trestles looking down from over the railing.
A little further along the trail, we had a nice view of the mountains as we passed these two red barns.
At about three miles into our ride, we arrived at the Green Cove Station.
The inside of the station is divided into several small sections. In the first section, there is a store where you can buy a souvenir or check out some of the antique items that are on display.
In the middle of the station was an old stove. This area appears to have once been a telegraph office.
The last section contained a table full of old tools and a collection of barrels in a corner.
Some old rail equipment was on display out front.
The trail is never far from Whitetop Laurel Creek. At this spot, there was a nice cascade of water falling over large boulders.
At mile 11, we stopped and ate lunch at the Creeper Trail Cafe. The prices are reasonable and the food is very good.
After lunch, we continued our ride. Along several of the trestle bridges, there were views of a bluff and of the creek.
Here’s a picture of my mode of transportation for the day.
This is the second year in a row that I’ve ridden the Creeper Trail. It’s not very strenuous and is a relaxing and enjoyable experience. Definitely worth doing if you get the chance.