Trail Layout
Green Cove
Taylors Valley
Photo Gallery
Purchase Prints
Then & Now

Around the turn of the century (1900) roads in rural Virginia were not uncommon to roads in most of the country. Rough often dirt roads made up what infrastructure there was. Many communities depended on rail service for transportation, freight and mail. Abingdon Virginia was the rail head for the Virginia Carolina Railway. By 1925 the railway reached many miles into rural Virginia and into northwest rural North Carolina. The rail line reached 75 miles with its terminus in Elkland, NC, now Todd, NC.

Residents from anywhere along the line could catch the train to Abingdon and from there, anywhere in the country or world for that matter. The railway brought prosperity to the region and communities grow.

Like most things the prosperity came with a cost. The local mountains was rich with timber and it was those areas rich with raw materials that made the train possible. Many felt the beautiful hills were raped for their trees for little was known about replacing and re-seeding the lands for future harvests.

Abingdon still continues to service the local communities through commerce, arts, financial center and city/county services.

Visitors to the trail has a large influence on the local economy. An estimated 4.5 million dollars is generated by trail users. An estimated 30% from local users and 70% from users outside the area.

used by permission of Norfolk Southern Archives

used by permission of Norfolk Southern Archives
Header photo shows the trail head in Abingdon, VA