Drive 1 hour from Boone, North Carolina and you will arrive in the quaint town of Damascus, Virginia. Why would you want to drive to Damascus?
To bike ride the Virginia Creeper Trail, that’s why!
The Virginia Creeper Trail is an old rail system that spanned the western portion of the state during the late 1800’s and 1900’s. The last train ran on March 31, 1977 and after many years the Virginia Creeper Trail was officially opened for tourism in 1989.
From Damascus there are many companies that will take you to Whitetop Station where you will ride 17 miles (11km) back down to Damascus. You can bring your own bike or you can rent one, to rent a bike it will cost about $30 usd and that includes the shuttle to the top. Click to check out the map of the 17 mile trail here: Virginia Creeper Trail Map
I have not been on a bike for many years, so at first I was hesitant but the trail is well worn and an easy ride. The fact it is mostly downhill helps as you don’t have to work too hard. Watch me in action:
There are places to stop along the way to take photos, go for a swim or eat lunch. The overall ride will take you 3 hours on average. My friends and I took 2.5 hours, we stopped often but not for long.
It is a very scenic ride along a very popular trail, well worth it for a day out in the countryside. After your ride, spend some time walking around town and you can say you have walked the Appalachian Trail!