Virginia Creeper Trail Information
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Va Creeper Trail Questions
Over the last 24 years we have answered a lot of calls and answered millions of questions. Most people ask similar questions, many of which are listed here. Some people look at this page and read the questions off to us over the phone. And, some people ask questions that make you say "WHA!?" Here is a few:
Where should i start the Va Creeper TRAIL?
The most common entry point Damascus. Visitors plan to drive to Damascus to begin their day. Spend the night and walk to the shop to take the shuttle to the top of the trail, Whitetop Station, and ride downhill, an easy 17-mile ride down to Damascus.
HOW LONG IS THE VIRGINIA CREEPER TRAIL?
The trail travels 34 miles from Whitetop Station downhill through Damascus (the halfway point) and back up to Abingdon.
WHAT IS THE ELEVATION OF THE TRAIL?
The typical shuttle ride will drop you off at Whitetop Station (3576' elevation) and you will downhill 17 miles downhill to Damascus (1952') then on to Alvarado (1900'), half the way between Abingdon and Damascus, then up to Abingdon (2087').
HOW FAR IS THE RIDE DOWNHILL FROMWHITETOP TO DAMASCUS?
The downhill section between Whitetop Station and our shop in Damascus is 17 miles.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
From 2 1/2 to 3 hours depending on how leisurely you want to be about it. We suggest that you take your time because there are many beautiful places to stop and "take it all in".
ARE THERE WATER AND FOOD AND BATHROOMS ALONG THE TRAIL?
Yes, there are vault toilets at the trailhead at Whitetop Station, 3 miles down the trail at Green Cove Station, and 13 miles down at the Straight Branch Parking Lot. They are also available for customers at Hellbender's Cafe in Taylor's Valley. There are numerous breakfast, lunch, and dinner choices in Damascus.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
The most popular "Combo Package" (bike rental/shuttle) is $39.99. You can bring your own bike andget the Shuttle Only to Whitetop for $24.99. There are special rates for Kids 12 and under, military, groups of 12 (or more must pay as a group to receive discount), and middle of the week discounts are available.
WHAT TIME DOES YOUR SHUTTLE GO?
Our shuttles depart for Whitetop Station (the downhill ride) each hour on the hour from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. (earlier and later with prior reservations). Our shuttles run from both our Adventure Damascus and Sundog Outfitter locations. Plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to your shuttle departure for check-in and bike fitting. Please call for available times for an Abingdon pickup or delivery shuttle. Just call us to book a shuttle (and bike rental) reservation 276-475-6262 or 888-595-2453. We shuttle all year round. For off season shuttle schedule (Nov-March) just give us a call.
CAN I RIDE FROM ABINGDON TO DAMASCUS? WHAT'S IT LIKE?
It's a really beautiful 17 mile ride! Check out the Abingdon alternative page. Since Abingdon is higher in elevation it is a great idea to drive to Damascus and shuttle to Abingdon.
DO YOU PICK UP IN ABINGDON?
If you want to ride the entire 34 miles, we would suggest being picked up in Abingdon. Make note that your shuttle from Abingdon to Whitetop is approx. 1.5 hours and the bike ride from end can take 5 - 8 hours. Our shuttles will pick you up at the Va Creeper trailhead in Abingdon at 8:15 a.m. Other times by special arrangement. Since our shuttles depart for Whitetop every hour, you could drive to Damascus to shuttle up and make arrangements to be picked up in Abingdon later in the day. Another plan is to ride the Whitetop to Damascus section one day and Abingdon to Damascus the second.
WHAT IS THE SURFACE OF THE VIRGINIA CREEPER TRAIL LIKE?
Crushed limestone and cinders left over from the train days. Firm in most places on the Whitetop to Damascus end, some rocky places on the Abingdon to Damascus end.
IS IT A STRENUOUS RIDE?
Nope, even people who haven't ridden in years can do this ride from Whitetop to Damascus. That's what makes is so great!
What's the weather going to be like on (fill in date here)?
74 degrees and sunny (Ok, not really, click the weather link above;-)
WHAT ARE YOUR HOURS OF OPERATION?
8am to 6 pm, 7 days per week. Off season (Nov-March) hours 9 am to 5/6 pm. Call us toll free for hours and for reservations 276-475-6262 or 888-595-2453.
DO CELL PHONES WORK ON THE VIRGINIA CREEPER TRAIL?
Not on the upper section. You are in a gorge and in the middle of the forest most of the time. Thank goodness we don't have cell towers out there! They sometimes work on the Abingdon to Damascus section depending on your carrier. Damascus has service provided by Sprint and Verizon. AT&T only works in Abingdon and does not work along the rest of the trail (can you hear me now?)
IS A HELMET REQUIRED?
The are highly recommended! They keep your brains safe. A helmet is provided with each rental bike (be sure to pick one up before you leave the store).
CAN I RIDE MY BIKE UP TO WHITETOP STATION?
Of course. It's a very pleasant ride with grades not exceeding 5%.
IS CAMPING ALLOWED ON THE CREEPER TRAIL? HOW ABOUT OTHER CAMPING?
Camping along the trail is fine as long as it's not on private property. The US Forest Service/Mt Rogers National Recreation Area also maintains some nice campgrounds. Look at them at USDA Forest Service or click here.
WHAT ABOUT OTHER LODGING OPTIONS IN THE DAMASCUS AND ABINGDON AREA?
Try this lodging link to find other places to stay while you're visiting the Damascus and Abingdon area.
WHAT TIME DOES THE 11 O'CLOCK SHUTTLE LEAVE?
Umm, maybe you better not be out on the trail by yourself...Buddy system!!!
WHAT'S THE STORY BEHIND THE LAUGHING DOG?
Click this link and find out!
I WANT TO SPEND SEVERAL DAYS. WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO DO IN SWVA (THAT'S SOUTHWESTERN VIRGINIA)?
Outdoor recreation galor as well as many cultural activities can be had in our region. Follow this link for more Creeper Trail Information and this link for area activities like Heartwood or Barter Theater information, Bristol Motor Speedway, country and bluegrass music and much more. A better plan would be to call us and let us help you plan your adventure.
I'M READING THIS WEBSITE, NOW I WANT TO CALL YOU AND ASK YOU THESE SAME QUESTIONS OVER THE PHONE, HOW DO I GET IN TOUCH WITH YOU?
We can help you better when you call 888-595-2453. (ext. 1 - reservation line, ext. 2 - address & hours, ext. 3 - Adventure Damascus store, ext. 4 - Sundog Outfitter store)
IS IT UPHILL FROM THE BOTTOM?
Yes it is.
IF IT RAINS, WILL WE GET WET?
More Questions? Want to add your own stupid question? Call us!