It’s time to take to the trails in whatever mode you choose. Be a #Trailsetter in Virginia’s Blue Ridge as you explore these 5 awesome trails! When you’re looking for a great hike, why not hit the tried and true Appalachian Trail? An iconic American path, the white-blazed way meanders through Virginia’s Blue Ridge from its north and south points at Mount Katahdin in Maine and Springer Mountain in Georgia, respectively. Unequivocally, Virginia’s Blue Ridge is Virginia’s premier outdoor destination. Perfect for hiking, water excursions, mountain and road biking, backpacking. And what pairs well with all those activities but cold craft beer on draft, refreshing glasses of wine, a shot of ‘shine or a cocktail, and music, of course. 1. Appalachian Trail – Hiking Spend time knocking out each spot on the trail with a friend or hop aboard a bus with Tour Roanoke. Both public and private tours are available, which gives you a designated driver and someone to keep the party going from point to point. A number of points in Virginia’s Blue Ridge lead to the Trail, and Virginia’s Triple Crown is a part of the draw as well. Hike a portion at your leisure to see if you can discover the 10 Hidden Gems. Did you know Virginia has more miles of Appalachian Trail than any other state? Did you know Roanoke is the largest city along the A.T.? The sparkling 630-acre reservoir is the most obvious draw for visitors to Carvins Cove but challenge yourself to look beyond the obvious. Around the reservoir are 60 miles of multi-use trails and all 11,200 acres of the total 11,636 acres are protected by Virginia’s largest conservation easement to date. Download the complete Appalachian Trail Map > The James River can be as laid back or challenging as you want it to be, depending on where you put in. Personally, the lazy tubing with Twin River Outfitters is the way I’d choose to conquer this old gal, but plenty others seek out more swift waters after a downpour. Sign up to download the VBR Cheers Trail mobile passport to check in at five locations. Once you do, you’re eligible to receive a free Cheers Trail t-shirt. Be a cool kid and earn the tee. Tangle the tame rapids (Class I & II mostly) with your own vessel or one from our area outfitters. The perk to utilizing outfitter services is they often offer shuttles, maps, and even overnight trips for the more adventurous paddlers. Listen to our Crooked Road Spotify playlist > Map of Virgini (opens in a new tab)”>a’s Blue Ridge Cheers Trail > Because Virginia’s Blue Ridge has become the hub of adult beverages on the western side of the Commonwealth, it only makes sense to create a map and passport for visitors to more easily taste their way along. Thus, the Virginia’s Blue Ridge Cheers Trail currently connects nearly 30 breweries, wineries, and distilleries between Eagle Rock and Meadows of Dan. The Appalachian Trail parallels the Blue Ridge Parkway from Blackhorse Gap to Bearwallow Gap (MP 90-97).Off Interstate 81 at exit 150 in Troutville is a parking lot and A.T. entry point with a kiosk. It’s about ¾-mile from U.S. 220 Alt.Near the previous point and on Tinker Mountain Road is an Exxon Gas Station. Behind the parking lot is a dirt path that climbs to Hay Rock on Tinker Mountain and connects with the Appalachian Trail.A well-used parking lot at the top of Catawba Mountain on Route 311 serves as the trailhead for McAfee Knob Trail, but it’s also a crossing point for A.T.Less than a mile south of Catawba Grocery on Route 311 is a parking lot trailhead for Dragon’s Tooth Trail and also an A.T. entry point. 4. Virginia’s Blue Ridge Cheers Trail – Breweries, Wineries, Distilleries The Upper James River Water Trail is 64 miles of H2O that makes its way from the headwaters in Botetourt County to join with smaller tributaries and Maury River in Rockbridge County before descending toward the Richmond falls bound for the Chesapeake Bay. The first 61 miles are Virginia Scenic River complete with excellent fishing and pristine viewshed. 3. Carvins Cove Natural Reserve – Mountain Biking 2. Upper James River Water Trail – Paddling The Crooked Road is Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail and it stretches 300 miles from our very own Franklin County south to the North Carolina border and westward to the Kentucky line. Travel the road but also explore “the inside” points of interest in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. Our favorite Crooked Road destinations include the the Blue Ridge Institute & Farm Museum for their glimpse of homestead life and their annual Blue Ridge Folklife Festival, and the Floyd Country Store for their Friday Night Jamboree and other impromptu jam sessions. The trails around Carvins Cove have earned rave reviews, including a nod in “The Best Mountain Bike Trails in the Southeast” list offered up by Singletracks, a premier podcast, website, and all around resource for the mountain biking community. 5. The Crooked Road – Music & History Finally, to wrap up the best of the best ways to enjoy the trails of Virginia’s Blue Ridge, it’s time for music with a side of history. Here’s pro mountain biker Brice Shirbach talking about the experience of riding at Carvins Cove. Whichever trail is calling you, answer. Be a #Trailsetter in the outdoors, along scenic drives for well-deserved beverages, or while perusing the history of our mountain music scene. You’re sure to love what you find waiting. James River Trip Options with Twin River Outfitters >
Michael Conlan and Dean Walsh are in action in the next hour or so while Joe Ward faces a Croatian fighter in the light-heavyweight division this evening.All 3 are already guaranteed Bronze medals ahead of today’s semi finals.
“You got to roll with it, man,” Maddon was saying the other day. “You just can’t be inflexible right now … I mean, I can’t say anything’s been difficult.“It’s really weird, though, when you really have to spit, how tough it is to spit. I mean, that’s probably the most difficult thing. Otherwise, it’s not been that bad.”In such moments are we again reminded of what the title of “manager” means. So much is made of lineups and in-game strategy and how much of a role front-office functionaries play in each, but the real heart of a manager’s work is in managing personalities and creating the right atmosphere.(And, these days, also reminding them to avoid high-fives and leave the sunflower seeds at home.)“You’re always trying to make sure the players are physically, mentally and emotionally prepared, and things are always kind of unknown and unpredictable,” Roberts said. “But obviously, like everyone else, (with) this kind of layer with the global pandemic, I never really thought I would have to try to educate myself so I could kind of help the players along and really keep their psyches positive and focused on baseball. Let’s face it: Pandemic Baseball is already a squirrel derby, to use the pet phrase of one of This Space’s favorites, the late Cal State Fullerton and Fullerton College football coach Gene Murphy. It is going to be different, it is occasionally (often?) going to be chaotic, and the normal boundaries aren’t always going to apply for players, fans, executives, whatever.Under those circumstances, if you are a Southern California baseball fan, you should be heartened. From a managerial standpoint, at least, the Dodgers and Angels are in good hands as they try to navigate whatever craziness is ahead.Dave Roberts has already created and nurtured a Dodgers clubhouse philosophy of flexibility, especially with a position player group where, with a couple of exceptions, nothing is guaranteed night to night. New Angels manager Joe Maddon believes in the comfort of being uncomfortable, acknowledging the hurdles and working through them, and keeping the lines of communication open to a greater degree than most managers.It would be easy to be thrown off by this new (temporary?) normal, right down to a list of protocols previously unimaginable in this most traditional and routine-oriented of sports. “Everyone is in that same bucket, I guess … There’s a lot of logistic things that are still kind of coming towards us as you get closer to the season. So I’m just trying to be open-minded (and) nimble, and hopefully our players will follow suit.”The Dodgers have had a player opt out in pitcher David Price. Both teams, along with just about every other team, have had players who have reported late or haven’t yet arrived at Training Camp 2.0, for reasons the managers have said they couldn’t describe but very well might be coronavirus related.There are new additions to the language of baseball, satellite camps and taxi squads, and the hallowed routines of baseball – including the clubhouse as refuge/hangout/bonding space – are being revised out of necessity.There will be unforeseen twists and turns going forward, and everything is overlaid with the possibility that in the event of a major outbreak within the sport, the season doesn’t get completed at all.Amid all of that, players still have to perform.“I’m just trying to, no pun intended, take a daily temperature, like trying to figure out everybody’s comfort zone and how everybody’s processing all of this,” Maddon said.“… There’s so many different ways that our mood is influenced before we ever get here, and then you have to come here and be a major-league baseball player and try to park it all. I’m a feel guy, and as much as ever I’ve been attempting to keep the feelers out there and try to understand where everybody is at every day. This includes the coaching staff, too, and I got to be aware of that. It includes my family, my daughter, my granddaughter, my wife.“You can look at somebody’s face. There’s something, concern or preoccupation. We all know what that feels like when you’re preoccupied with different thoughts to take you away from this exact moment. You get out of the present tense. That’s very concerning, and it could take you away from your ability to play this game. … I really believe empathy and the ability to be aware of who’s next to you and how they’re feeling matters now more than ever.”The mind reels at the idea of a Billy Martin or Dick Williams or Leo Durocher – the crusty old-school type of manager who believed feelings were for wimps – trying to navigate these choppy waters. It would be ugly.There are other factors here. Maddon turned 66 in February. Roberts is 48 and a cancer survivor. Both could be considered part of the group that could be hardest hit by COVID-19, but neither has shown any hesitancy in pushing forward. Roberts had previously said he had consulted with Dodgers’ medical people who told him people with prior cancer history “haven’t been prone to be at higher risk.”“I thought about what was at stake, given my health history,” Roberts said this week. “I talked to my wife and family. I just wanted to make sure, you know. I had to make sure that I’m responsible. But I never really considered opting out or choosing not to manage.”For his team, that’s a very good thing. Pandemic Baseball is an environment that’s uncertain and in some ways scary. The steadier the hand at the helm, the [email protected]@Jim_Alexander on Twitter Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error