The Virginia Creeper Trail
The Virginia Creeper is a shared-use trail (mountain biking, hiking, equine) connecting Abingdon, Virginia, with the Virginia-North Carolina border 1.1 miles east of Whitetop Station, Virginia. The total length of the trail is 33.4 miles.
It is owned by two municipalities and one Federal Agency. Policies are jointly recommended by the Creeper Trail Advisory Board.
A number of interpretive signs are placed along the trail.
The last Virginia Creeper train ran in 1977.
Much of the trail goes through private land. In many places, the public trail corridor is only 80’ wide.
Three agencies manage the Virginia Creeper Trail: Damascus and Abingdon administer the trail from Abingdon to Damascus (mile 0-15); and the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area manages the trail from Damascus up to the NC line (mile 15-34).
There are 3 visitor centers along the trail: one at the Damascus Caboose, the old Green Cove Station, and the rebuilt Whitetop Station. All are open weekends May-October. Mount Rogers Interpretative Association has a variety of items for sale at each center.
There are 47 trestles on the trail. The U.S. Forest Service and Virginia Creeper Trail club volunteers have refurbished the decking & railings on 23 trestles in the last three years.
Bathrooms are available in Damascus near the caboose, Straight Branch parking lot, Creek Junction parking lot, Green Cove train station, Whitetop train station and at the Abingdon parking lot.
If you hear banjo music you are probably passing Iron Horse Music Hall, next to the Iron Horse Campground. Local and regional musicians play here at least two nights a week. Taylor's Valley also has musical events during the summer.
Refreshments can be purchased at several places along the trail. Communities along the trail such as Alvarado, Damascus, and Taylors Valley have businesses that offer refreshments. Bottled water and drinks are for sale at Green Cove on weekends from May-October. Free water is available at Whitetop Station during frost-free months.
The only public phone along the trail is in Damascus. Cell coverage is poor.
Over 100,000 people enjoy the trail each year.
The U.S. Forest Service operates a bike patrol along the Creeper from Damascus to Whitetop Station from May-October.
Bicyclists and hikers should yield to horseback riders. When passing a horse, a biker should yell out that they are “passing left”. A fast moving biker or a hiker with a large backpack can easily spook a horse.
We are frequently asked about the economic impact on the area by persons around the country who are interested in establishing their own rail-trail. Interested parties should consult with the Rails to Trails Conservancy, a national rail-trail advocacy organization.