I love hiking. There’s just something about it that’s relaxing and liberating. It clears my head. Plus, when I’ve completed a particularly difficult hike (Profile Trail, anyone?), I feel so accomplished at the end of it.
Recently, I ventured to Grayson Highlands State Park in Virginia, and it was honestly one of the coolest places I’ve hiked. Grayson Highlands has it all- a variety of trails, activities and even wildlife.
The trail itself is unique in that, compared to other trails in the area, it is very open, so you have a great view from anywhere along the trail. Plus, you can look back and see how far you’ve come, or look forward to see where you’re going next.
You can also choose the level of difficulty you wish to hike. Some of the trails remain simple and flat, while others go straight through the difficult hills. No matter which trail you pick, you will find great views. I went with my little brother, who had already hiked it once before, so we took the harder route. We had to do a little bit of rock climbing, but the views were spectacular.
In addition to the great views, you will find wildlife along the trail. The ponies were really sweet- one even took a selfie with me! But I stayed clear of the bulls- they were honestly terrifying.
Grayson Highlands is along the Appalachian Trail, and the trails intersect and cross over each other all over the place. My advice would be to pick up a map at the visitor center before hitting the trails because it can get pretty confusing. Luckily, my brother knew where we were going.
If you’re up for trying something new, you can try bouldering, which is similar to free solo climbing, but on smaller boulders. I didn’t try this while I was there but I would definitely give it a go if I visit again. Grayson Highlands also has a ton of campsites to choose from, spread out along the trails.
Grayson Highlands is a great place to spend a day, or a night or two!