One of Virginia’s newest Rail Trail projects is coming to Bath County.
Most of the Jackson River Scenic Trail is in neighboring Alleghany County. It’s currently a 14.4-mile crushed gravel trail. Recently, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for a new trailhead near Lake Moomaw. When completed, the new Cedar Creek access point will add approximately two miles to the trail and extend it into Bath County. We couldn’t be more excited.
Rails-to-Trails projects are very popular and growing all around the country. They are usually multi-use trails that are perfect for walking, running, bike rides and in some cases, horseback riding. In most cases, including the Jackson River Scenic Trail, powered vehicles like ATVs or dirt bikes are not allowed. The trail offers a peaceful and family-friendly experience.
Virginia has its share of Rail Trails, but the Jackson River Scenic Trail is second to none in terms of natural beauty. The trails runs mostly parallel to its namesake, the Jackson River, and offers exceptional water views. There are also breathtaking views of rolling farmland and distant mountains. In the spring, wildflowers are abundant. In the summer, the tree lush tree canopy provides shade on warm days. In the fall, the foliage is vibrant with crimson and gold. When you explore the trail, you’ll definitely want to bring your camera.
Having the northern terminus in Bath County will make the trail even more accessible, especially for walkers, joggers and those who have their own bikes. For those who need bikes, it’s an easy drive from Bath County to the southern terminus in Covington, where a top-notch outfitter can supply gear and get you on the trail.
The expansion of the trail to the Cedar Creek trailhead is expected to be complete in the fall of 2022. The Jackson River Scenic Trail is already a popular activity for visitors to Bath County. More access, more mileage and more scenery will make an already wonderful trail experience even better.