10-11-09 day 131
start: Lost Mountain Shelter, VA
end: The Place @ Damascus, VA
daily mileage: 15.8
total mileage: 1715.3
We got up bright and early, with a very real sense of Christmas morning, we were going to Damascus today! While still in VA, Damascus basically marks the end of a month and a half long Virginian odyssey. Plus, its know as the friendliest town on the trial. About two miles south of the shelter the AT intersects the Virginia Creeper Trail. The VCT is a rails to trails conversion and serves primarily as a bike trail. We saw it as a super flat shorter alternative to the AT that also runs straight into Damascus. So we hopped on the Creeper Trail and cruised along over awesome old rail bridged and through a canopy of technicolor trees. Autumn in Dixie is great.
The section of the AT between Lost Mountain Shelter and Damascus is ~16 miles but by hopping on the Creeper Trail we did the "16 trail miles" in under 4 hours! Hitting town was like Dorothy getting to the Emerald City, here we were, Damascus, finally! We stopped into "The Place" a hostel run by the Methodidt Church. We found out Gooch, Bacon, and Icarus, as well as a bunch of others were all here, great! There's not much in Damascus, but it is a great little town and it does have laundry and Quincey's pizza. We we went and got pizza and beer, it was great celebrating with boys!