A few weeks ago we visited the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia for the first time. We had heard wonderful things about the area and when we started researching things to do we had a long list including breweries, wineries, hiking, cycling, tubing, and a music festival. We eagerly made the four plus hour drive through the valley to our first true destination, a brewery. Are you surprised?
Our valley visit started at Blue Mountain Barrel House. After a bit of taste testing, we made our beer selections and headed outside to the beautiful scenery. The hop vines off in the distance with the mountains in view made the setting quite tranquil.
While there we spotted our first Red Wing Roots Music Festival poster, the main attraction of our Shenandoah Valley tour.
After stopping at Devil’s Backbone Brewing Company for lunch we checked out our one bedroom cabin at Rawley Springs. The cabin was musty but the scenery and quiet was quite enjoyable. The surrounding area offered hiking along a stream and to the top of the mountain range above the cabin. Luckily I married a coastie/boy scout who is quite handy with a fire so we manged to fight off the mosquitoes long enough to make s’mores one evening while watching the sunset.
We explored the Shenandoah National Park and historic Skyline Drive twice while in the valley. The scenic overlooks were absolutely gorgeous. And I hiked on the Appalachian Trail for the first time ever. We were on the lookout for black bears but never came across any while hiking. However, we did see four bears total while driving along Skyline Drive. Only one stopped and posed for us. I’m glad it was a brief visit with lots of distance between us!
After exiting Skyline Drive we discovered the Meets Bottom covered bridge in Luray. It has the longest span out of any in the area and was recently restored. The surrounding farm land was beautiful and it’s well worth a stop if you have a few spare minutes.
While in the valley I had to visit at least one local yarn shop or fiber farm. I called around to the area farms but they were either on vacation or moving so I ended up visiting The Needle Lady in Charlottesville. The shop clerk was very friendly and talkative. And they had a comfy chair for my husband to hold down while I searched the shop for something unique to take home. I found some purple mohair wool roving from a local fiber artist.
I managed to squeeze in a little spinning for the Tour de Fleece while Jon ran one morning. The screened in porch made me wish we had one. One day soon, I hope.
We packed our things and happily left the musty cabin one week after we arrived to attend the last day of the Red Wing Roots Music Festival. More to come very soon on that great experience. If you ever get a chance to visit Shenandoah Valley, we highly recommend it! The views are spectacular and the people are very friendly.