The Tinker Ridge Trail crosses Tinker Creek, which is the site depicted in Annie Dillard’s 1974 Nonfiction work “Pilgrim at Tinker Creek,” then ascends Tinker Ridge at Hay Rock Overlook, providing spectacular views of Carvins Cove, North County, and the Roanoke Valley. The 8-mile round trip hike on the Appalachian Trail is just a 15-minute drive from Downtown Roanoke and is of moderate difficulty.
- The round-trip hike is 8 miles long.
- Begin the hike by crossing the guardrail go .2 miles on the unmarked trail until you reach the Appalachian Trail intersection.
- At the intersection, go left onto the white blazed trail, where you will continue for close to a mile.
- You will then reach the RATC information kiosk after crossing a creek and railroad tracks.
- The trail then becomes steeper and rockier, where you follow the trail until you reach the top. There are three marked overlooks on the way to the top for beautiful views of McAfee’s Knob, Hay Rock, and Carvins Cove.
- From Roanoke, take I-81N to Exit 150B.
- After the exit, follow Rt. 220N toward Fincastle and Daleville.
- After turning on 220, you will see a Park & Ride lot almost immediately on your left.
- The Address of the park and ride is 39 Tinker Mountain Road, Daleville, VA 24083.
- You will park at the Park and Ride, which is free for hikers.
- Visit a local brewery for a drink after your climb or hike, such as Soaring Ridge Craft Brewers (less than 15 miles away in Downtown Roanoke) or Ballast Point Brewing (less than 4 miles from US Hwy 220).
- Visit Downtown Roanoke for dinner or lunch and enjoy the great local restaurants or market on a day that it is open.
- Visit the Fincastle Winery in Fincastle for a glass of wine, or bottle to take home.