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Backpacking with Brooke: Sharp Top Trail

This hike is one of the most popular ones in our area, with a spectacular view

BEDFORD, Va. – Sharp Top Trail at Peaks of Otter is a 3 mile out and back hike that is frequented by many in the area! It starts in a parking lot just off of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Beware, all the bathrooms and shelters are closed, so stay prepared!

The initial ascend it pretty steep, a sign warns to wear suitable hiking footwear. We wore tennis shoes and were fine.

The first 100 meters are no joke, but eventually you’ll dump out to the fire road. Cross that and you will start the true climb to the top.

The trail levels off for a moment and then it gets steep again. Make sure to pack plenty of water to drink when you stop to rest!

About midway up, the trail turns pretty rocky, with stone stairs helping out the incline. At the top of these stairs though is the first little hint of what’s coming. We hiked around 5 o clock so the sun was laying on the trees beautifully

You’re almost to the fork in the trail when it gets pretty green. Alas you’ll find yourself with the option to go left to Sharp Top or right to Buzzards Roost. I always hit Buzzards Roost first because it’s about two minutes in the other direction and offers a nice, less crowded view at a lower peak. You can climb on top of the rocks to see a nice 360 and look up at the Sharp Top peak as well.

Back at the sign, stay to the left to head up to Sharp Top. It’s only 1900 feet, but this part is definitely the most difficult for one reason: stairs.

Once you get through the humongous boulders, you’re just a few hundred meters away.

An old stone house sits at the top, follow the stairs around it and you’ll soon forget that you climbed a gazillion stairs- the view is truly breathtaking.

Take the time to walk around the entire rock structures, there’s views from all angles

On the way down keep your eyes peeled for deer! Follow the path back down the way you came, and back to the parking lot.


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