Walking and hiking are all-weather activities, and many options exist in Central Virginia to take a nice nature walk. The beautiful scenery of Virginia forests and the Blue Ridge Mountains will open your eyes a little wider. If you’re interested in a day hike that’s just a short distance from Lynchburg, we have a destination suggestion for you: The James River Foot Bridge. Here’s why you should add this bridge to your scenic walk plans this year.
It’s the longest foot traffic-only bridge on the Appalachian Trail
That’s right, the James River Foot Bridge is part of the Appalachian Trail, the hiking route that extends all the way from Georgia to Maine. Not only that, but this bridge is 623 feet long—that’s longer than two football fields put together! It’s designed solely for pedestrian traffic, so you won’t be bothered by loud noises from cars or any other traffic.
Walking along the James River Foot Bridge will not only allow you a chance to breathe in some fresh air, it’ll also tantalize your eyes with the gorgeous natural scenery that Central Virginia is known for. Stretching out over the wide waters of the James, you can experience an amazing, picturesque view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s a great opportunity to just take in the sights. The dam nearby causes the water to be calm and placid, perfect for reflecting and having a few moments of tranquility.
It’s dedicated to awesome people
The James River Foot Bridge was made possible in part by husband and wife hiking partners, Bill and Louise Foot, also known as “The Happy Feet”. Not only did they hike the entire Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain, GA, to Mount Katahdin, ME, but they also traversed the entire American Discovery Trail from Cape Henlopen, DE, to Point Reyes, CA. Before he died of cancer at age 53, Bill Foot helped make this long-awaited pedestrian bridge a reality. After he died, it was appropriately named the James River Foot Bridge.
It’s great for exercise
The James River Foot Bridge was created in part to make a direct path over the James River so that hikers wouldn’t have to take a long detour. And it’s not just for hikers, either; it’s for anybody who has an interest in exploring the great outdoors!
The bridge is located in Big Island, VA, just a short journey beyond the borders of Lynchburg. It’s perfect for a morning or afternoon trek. Come solo or bring friends and family for some quality time. Happy trails!