The story below is an excerpt from our July/August 2014 issue. For the rest of this story and more like it subscribe today, view our digital edition or download our FREE iOS app!
From the Editor July-Aug 2014
These rocks are a 2.8-mile walk from a road via the Appalachian Trail.
Incidences are up. Do you have an idea on a catch message that might stick in people’s minds and make a difference?
If you’re lucky enough to live in Roanoke, Va., as I do, you know there are many places nearby where you can park the car and hop onto the Appalachian Trail.
That’s a good thing.
Or maybe it’s not.
One of the easiest places to get on is immediately off an exit from I-81. With more parking than could ever get used by hikers. And with a walk in which, at about 2.8 miles, the trail hooks out onto a set of boulders. You can stand on them, with a trail blaze under your feet, and look down at the full expanse of Carvins Cove about 1,000 feet below. And over at McAfee Knob. And down onto Roanoke. And down the valley toward Blacksburg.
It’s a great lunch spot, and a maybe 20-time default-to-easy walk for us on our ongoing quest to get into the woods every weekend.
This most recent time marked a first for our ascents to the spot: In green and blue spray paint across a broad expanse of rocks was a prom invitation, in foot-tall letters.
I suppose the perp(s), whose name(s) I did not commit to memory, could be tracked down were it someone’s calling to take those two first names, scan the names of area high-school grads for 2014, and begin to pair sets of names toward narrowing.
It is not, of course, anyone’s calling to do that.