Nice page Bob. I have probably been pretty close to here when I went down to Erwin Tenn. (The place where the locals hanged an elephant in 190?) Also been near Bristol when we drove down to Boone and Tanawha.
It's a stunningly beautiful area. Very near Damascus, often called "the friendliest town on the Appalachian Trail". (And I can say that it seems to be, from my own experience.) The town's entire economy is based on outdoor recreation. The AT runs through town. The Virginia Creeper Trail runs through town. The Mount Rogers National Recreation Area runs right up the city limits. Fly fishing galore. The Iron Mountain Trail (an old section of the AT left over from a reroute) is now a hiking/horseback/mountain bike trail complete with the AT's old route and all of the shelters intact also runs down to Damascus. Big mountains all around (the last big mountains until you get to New Hampshire if you're headed north). Wonderful streams and rivers, and tons of waterfalls.
Short hike, but I have no complaints.
Love those short hikes, they're great to do on the days in between the longer ones. Nice page!
Re: short hikes.
Or when, like me, you have a pretty nasty injury and can't hike very far. Going to be at least two months before I can start hiking and backpacking again.
Thanks for the vote!