Section 17 (AT in a Day)
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Va.16/Sugar Grove Hwy in Sugar Grove, VA to US321/Rt.67 in Hampton, Tenn - 105.1 miles
Va.16/Sugar Grove to Va.672 9.2 Miles Hiked by Dartmouth Students
Va.672 to Dickey Gap/Va.16/Va.650 5.4 Miles Hiked by Dartmouth Students
Dickey Gap/Va.16/Va.650 to Va.603 8.5 Miles Hiked by Dartmouth Students
Va.603 to Wilburn Ridge 10.3 Miles Hiked by Dartmouth Students
Wilburn Ridge to Whitetop Mtn. Rd./USFS 89 8.8 Miles Hiked by Stephanie Yu and friends
Two law school friends, Preston Moon and Jenny Vessels; my brother, Jason Yu; and I headed to southwestern Virginia's Grayson Highlands State Park from New York City, Baltimore, and Washington, DC, for our section of the AT from Massie Gap/Wilburn Ridge southbound to USFS 89, the access road to Whitetop Mountain. Preston thru-hiked the AT in 2003, and suggested this section because it's got great views, and despite having hiked it twice before, he's never seen it in good weather. So of course it rained and drizzled the entire day. We traipsed through deep mud on a detour to hit the highest point in Virginia, Mount Rogers (which normally lacks views, so it's not like we missed anything there). Our best view of the day was of the wild ponies. Conditions weren't ideal, but we did get to eat wild blueberries right off the bush and inhale the smells of Christmas as we walked through stands of firs (I think). Overall, it was a fun time, and we'd love to do it again...but maybe without Preston because he seems to bring the rain.
Stephanie Yu '97
Route 600 to Whitetop Mountain Hiked by Scott Quesenberry
Whitetop Mountain Rd./USFS 89 to Route 91 in Damascus 21.3 Miles Hiked by John Everett
Route 91 in Damascus to Low Gap/US 421 14.8 Miles Hiked by Steve Lake
Low Gap/US 921 to Tenn. 91 6.5 Miles Hiked by K. Dorian
Tennessee 91 to Watauga Dam Road 15.8 Miles Hiked by Travis and Rebecca Bledsoe We had a wonderful trip. It rained on us almost the entire 15.8 miles but it didn't dampen our spirits. It began raining about the time we hit the trail at 8:00 am and didn't let up until we were near the end. The section we were hiking is along the ridge-line that runs parallel to the prettiest lake in our region -the Watauga Lake. We were not able to get photos of the lake or surrounding mountains due to the low clouds. I highly recommend this section to others. If you start on TN91 and head south, the terrain is light rolling, no bad climbs.
We met several long distance hikers along the trail, and one couple (brother and sister) was from New Hampshire. We told them that we were hiking for the Dartsmouth Outing Club and they were familiar with your club but had not heard about the AT in a Day event. Their trail names are Skiman and Catch-up.
We saw two black bears during our trip and our faithful and fearless new hiking buddy, which we named Rusty, chased them away. Rusty is a young male Brittany Spaniel that we rescued on our way to the trailhead for AT in a Day. He is a great trail dog. We are trying to find him a good home if anyone is interested ~423-384-0029 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Travis and Rebecca Bledsoe Associated with Eastman Hiking and Canoing Club in Kingsport, TN
Watauga Dam Road to US 321 4.2 Miles Hiked by Jeff Cooney