We walk for fitness and health daily, both too old to jog or run, and most days it is on one of two section of the Huckleberry Rails to Trails path that are fairly level. This path follows the old Huckleberry rail from the Library in Blacksburg to the Rec Center in Christiansburg, about 7 miles. A couple of years ago, it was extended from where it passes under the main highway bypass in the opposite direction from Christiansburg into and through the Heritage Community Park and Nature Area. We have wandered around in that park many times prior to the extension of the Huckleberry and have walked from a parking area in the park back toward Blacksburg a several times, but have never gone to the other parking area in the park, a mile farther away.
Today is cool and partly cloudy again, but calm wind and for variety, we drove down to the lower parking lot and started our walk at that terminus of the Huckleberry Trail, a very isolated area, but very pretty. The walk we did from the terminus to the road the trail crosses is a little over a mile, almost entirely uphill. Once we reached the road, we turned around and walked it back down to the car.
The first couple hundred yards are downhill to a creek and after crossing the bridge over the creek, there were at least a dozen small trees all gnawed down by beaver. We did not see any animals, just the remaining trunks mostly devoid of branches and couldn’t see where their dam was built, though there was evidence just beyond this of overwash of the trail from the rain night before last, so it must be just a bit upstream from the bridge.
It is a pretty section, probably will be prettier when the trees and shrubs leaf out. You can see the old silos from the Heritage Park section we used to walk. And this pretty glade of pines with a thick layer of needles below.
Though there are many benches to rest on and several picnic shelters near the two parking areas, this glade would be a great place to bring a picnic on a warm sunny day.
It took us several years to explore this end of the trail, but I’m glad we did as it gives us two other sections to walk.
When the weather warms up consistently, we will add back in the hike up in the Conservancy that we also love.