Hit The Trails

Dick & Willie Rail Trail (Martinsville)

Martinsville boasts several good trails that run right through the heart of the city.   The Dick & Willie is a rail trail that is often used by local runners for a series of races (5Ks, 10Ks, and a Half Marathon).  If you don’t have a bike, there is a Bike Barn that runs through the summer that will lend you a bike at no charge. The Uptown Connection Trail and the Silverbell Trail are shorter trails that are connect the Uptown shopping area to the trail. The Dick & Willie has recently been extended to reach all the way to the Smith River Sports Complex. 2016 2017

The Dick & Willie Trail by the Silverbell Connection

Gravely Nature Preserve (Ridgeway)

The Gravely Nature Preserve is part of the Smith River Trails Complex. It feels a little remote even though it butts up on a residential area on one side.   The trail is easy as long as you start from the beginning.  There is a pretty good slope down on the exit.  There are several trails that run through the preserve.  There is an old family cemetery along the main trail and the old home site is along a different trail.  2015

The Placard By the Cemetery Along the Gravely Preserve Trail

Textile Heritage Trail & Fieldale Walking Trail (Fieldale)

These are two separate trails that are right across the street from one another so it would be a shame to do one and not the other.  The Textile Heritage Trail is a short looping trail through a wooded area and includes a short portion of boardwalk.  It is dotted with educational  placards that tell the history of the textile industry in the area.  Across the street, the Fieldale Walking Trail runs alongside the Smith River and is a fairly level, well-maintained path popular with dog walkers. There are benches and birdhouses along the way and spots for fishermen to access the river. 2016

The Fieldale Textile Trail May be One of the Prettiest

Mountain Laurel Mountain Biking Trail (Horsepasture)

Mountain Laurel Mountain Biking Trail is on the western side of the county, just off of Horsepasture-Price Road. This is a popular trail for mountain bikers and walkers are permitted as well. Last I heard, there was 11 miles of trail.

Mountain Bike Trail at Mountain Laurel Trails

Fall Creek Falls

Technically part of the North Carolina Mayo River State Park, Fall Creek Falls is on DeShazo Road in far west Henry County. It may actually be across the state line in North Carolina but it feels like it is part of Henry County. There have been a lot of improvements over just the past couple of years. The first time I went, there was no parking lot. Now there is a parking lot and camping areas. 2016

The Falls at the End of the Trail

Chinqua Penn Walking Trail (Reidsville, NC)

The Chinqua Penn Walking Trail is a beautiful 1.7 loop trail on the grounds of what used to be the Chinqua Penn Plantation.  Built in the 1920’s and closely related to tobacco fortunes, the Chinqua Penn estate is reminiscent of a smaller Gilded Age monument.  The walking path has several features that will inspire any photographer. The main house is now privately owned and not open for tours. Every year there is a Run With The Cows 5K sometime in late September.  The runners “do the loop” twice. 2016

The Structures Along the Path are Gorgeous

The Virginia Creeper (Damascus, VA)

The Virginia’s Creeper Trail is a 34 mile trail open to hikers and bikers. It starts on Whitetop Mountain, runs 17-miles downhill into Damascus and then continues into Abingdon. It’s about a three hour drive from Henry County to Damascus, where there are seven different bike shops that will rent you a bike and shuttle you up the mountain for you to enjoy the 2.5 to 3 hour trip down the first 17-mile stretch.  You don’t even have to pedal until you are almost at the point to turn in the bike! 2016

Stopping Along the Virginia Creeper Trail