Hoop Hole is a diverse network of trails that consists of two loops perfect for mountain biking, hiking, trail running or backpacking. The lower loop is 4 miles and skips the views from the ridge top and the extended loop is 9 miles. Both loops offer beautiful views of the streams cascading over rocks and swimming holes. If you decide to do an overnight there are no established campgrounds but the best spot for camping is about 1.3 miles up the trail after you turn left and start following Hipes Branch Creek.
The longer loop climbs to the top of the ridge for scenic views of the surrounding mountains. One could try to reach certain cliffs from the ridgetop for more expanded views. This trail network can also be accessed from Roaring Run Recreation Area adding 4.8 miles and making the full circuit 14.5 miles.
Local Tip: The trail is very rugged and good footwear is necessary. Also, the trail markers are sometimes difficult to see with yellow blazes.
From Roanoke – Take I-81 N then take Exit 150A to merge onto US-220 S. Make a U-turn at US-11 N and continue for 21 miles. Turn left onto VA-615 (signs mark it as the road to Roaring Run) and the trailhead will be on your right.
At Virginia Mountain Vineyards you can forget about the present and enjoy the picturesque mountain views visible on top of Zion Hill. Surrounded by the Blue Ridge and Alleghany mountains, the vineyard is 14 miles north of Interstate 81 outside of Fincastle.
The first generation family owned and operated vineyard and winery, offers 13 wines. Owners David and Marie Gibbs are happy answer questions about the vineyard or winery; greater knowledge about grape growing, harvesting, and processing may help you to better appreciate and enjoy a good wine.
Virginia Mountain Vineyards was established in the spring of 1998 with the planting of 3,325 Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc vines. There are more than 5,625 vines today with the addition of Merlot, Traminette, and Petit Verdot grapes covering more than 9.5 acres. Virginia Mountain Vineyard is part of the Wine Trail of Botetourt County.
The winery is open March through December.
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