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Virginia Creeper Trail for Great Cycling

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Views from the Creeper Trail

My family and I spent this weekend on Abingdon’s beautiful Virginia Creeper Trail. If you like to cycle and crave the emotional restoration that a day spent outdoors can provide, this is a great place to go for it.

A 34 mile ride from White Top through Damascus and on to Abingdon gives you the opportunity to do just that.

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Here’s how we did it:

  1. Book a room at the Martha Washington Inn in Abingdon.  Beautiful old hotel with a great restaurant and spa.  It’s worth the trip just to stay here.
  2. Rent a mountain bike at one of the local shops that cater to visitors who want to ride the trail.  Each of these shops will also provide transportation to White Top where they drop you off with your bike.  We’ve used a couple different ones, but these folks are especially nice.
  3. Start the ride in White Top.  Much of this part is downhill, so it’s pretty easy.  There are many beautiful stops along the way, boulders to sit on in a river stream, trees to lean against.
  4. The Creeper Trail Cafe is your reward at the end of the first 11 miles, a great place to stop for lunch or just a snack.  Highly recommend the pinto beans and cornbread, and word has it the chocolate cake is homemade.

    Creeper Trail Cafe

  5. Pedal on for the next 6 scenic miles, and you’ll arrive in Damascus where another great stopping point awaits.  The Off the Beaten Path ice cream shop serves the biggest single serving waffle cones I’ve ever seen.  Of course, you’ll be canceling out the calorie burn of the past 17 miles, but then, you’re on vacation!

    Off the Beaten Path Ice Cream Shop

  6. The ride to Abingdon from Damascus levels out a bit and requires a bit more pedaling.  Here’s your opportunity to make up for your ice cream indulgence.  The countryside out here becomes more dotted with pastures and cows who take cooling breaks in the river.

    Cows Take a Dip

By the time you get back to Abingdon, you’ll be ready to put your bike away for the day, but if you’re like me, you’ll also be looking forward to the next time you can come back.

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