The Creeper is a former rail bed with a history dating back to the late 1800's. The railroad right-of-way was secured for a recreational trail in the late 1970's many years after the trains ceased to run
The trail runs through the Mount Rogers National Recreation area and is surrounded by all kinds of other trails including the Appalachian Trail and the Iron Mountain Trail, hence Damascus' nickname of "Trail Town USA".
A popular ride choice for new cyclists and families (heck, with everyone!) is to start in Damascus and take a shuttle to the top of Whitetop Mountain where you can pretty much coast all the way back to Damascus, crossing many amazing old railroad trestles along the way. Damascus has several outfitters who can shuttle you and your bike to the top and they can even rent you a bike if needed. You'll see all kinds of people on this trek including young kids in trailers--this is a great place to show your children the joys of riding a bike!
The area is home to lots of great lodging choices inlcuding cabins great for a getaway for families, couples, or hardcore trail enthusiasts.We've had good experiences at the Green Cove Getaway, so check them out. A weekend trail mix of some easy cruising on the Creeper, some hardcore mountain biking on the Iron Mountain Trail and a hike up Mount Rogers is sure to leave you feeling recharged (though exhausted!).