Carvins Cove from the AT
Hot summer haze over Carvins Cove, looking down from the AT.
On this old favorite, the day was hot and the trail surprisingly populated, including a Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club maintainer who said he had begun overseeing this section of the trail 32 years ago when it was rerouted, and his been its guardian ever since. We offered our usual thanks, and regrets at not helping, as usual being met with a smiling glad-you're-out-here.
One annoying part of this walk is the multiple passings under giant electric wires and the sky-high structures that hold them up in the air. Some of these passings are accompanied by big buzzy noises and at all of them, all larger vegetation exists only in piles of cut-down trees. But on this day, at the first meeting of the wires on the way up– not far beyond the railroad tracks – one product of the cutting was a huge expanse of blackberry bushes. We decided we'd stop and pick on the way back down.
Up on the ridge overlooking Carvins Cove, the air was so deeply hazed that even the trees on the way down to its banks were grayed, and while we could make out the Roanoke Airport, we could not see the buildings of downtown Roanoke. Still, after some tusslin' over which rock to perch ourselves on, we had a good dinner as the sun waned a little.
Back at the electricity swath, we filled several food containers with good black berries and then headed on back out of the woods about the time the sun really did become a little less intense.
Appalachian Trail, U.S. 220 south onto Tinker Mountain Ridge and back. About 7 miles.
How to get there: I-81 to Exit 150 north; park at the lot just below the Exxon station.