The Sharp Top hike is a classic 3-mile round trip (out and back) at the Peaks of Otter. It was long thought to be Virginia’s tallest mountain, when in fact, it is not even the tallest of the Peaks of Otter. Nearby Flat Top rises to 4,001 feet. Mount Rogers near the North Carolina border is the state’s tallest mountain at 5,729 feet.
Sharp Top has a rather steep ascent, but not that long. Many folks of all ages and fitness levels hike this trail almost every day in the warm seasons. Hikers in shape should have little trouble, and those in not such good shape will get a needed workout. There’s also a shuttle bus for those who would prefer to ride up and hike only downhill.
From Roanoke – Turn right onto Orange Ave SE from Williamson Rd SE. Continue for about 15 miles as this becomes US-460 E. Turn left onto SR-617. In 0.6 miles, turn right onto SR-695. Continue for 9.5 miles and turn right onto the Parkway ramp. The destination will be at milepost 86 on the Blue Ridge Parkway (near the Peaks of Otter Recreational Area).
Located in Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia at the foot of the Peaks of Otter, the winery of the same name features fruit of the farm wines.
Although Peaks of Otter grows many fruits for the wine, apples are the main crop. Apples, peaches, nectarines, plums, and pears are used to make wine, cider, and butters. These “grandma’s style” wines are excellent with snacks, as an after dinner wine or just sipping.
The winery is open daily from April through December and on weekends January through March.
Twin River Outfitters is a full-service paddlesports business that rents canoes, kayaks, tubes, and rafts on the James, Maury, Jackson, and Cowpasture rivers. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains — only 25 minutes from Downtown Roanoke — Twin River is one of the largest river outfitters in the area. Established in 1978, TRO is an experienced river based business that runs a variety of safe, scenic, and fun river trips that appeal to all skill levels. In addition to a variety of day trips, they also offer multi-day and overnight trips that include riverside camping.
River tubing trips are 1.5 to 3 miles in length and feature great current, easy fun rapids, and typically great water levels all summer long. Trips include shuttles, life jackets, and commercial grade river tubes.
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Each week we compile a list of what's going on outside, plus plenty of outdoor news, things to do, and giveaways designed to make it easy for you to get outside in the Roanoke Region of Virginia.