The Great Outdoors

Boating and Sailing/Boat Rentals/Marinas

Whether you are a motorboat enthusiast, canoeist, kayaker or sailor, you’ll find the perfect place for your favorite water sport here in beautiful Bedford. No need to worry if you can’t bring or don’t have a watercraft. Our many full services marinas and outfitters have got just what you need!

Fishing & Hunting
Bedford is a sportsman’s paradise … from hunting game to fishing for the beautiful trout and bass that lurk in its rivers, streams and lakes, Bedford offers gorgeous scenery, quiet mountain hollows and plenty of animal life. Bedford challenges both the novice and the experienced.

Bedford provides superb hunting opportunities from deer to wild turkeys, rabbit and waterfowl. Thousands of acres of public land are open to hunting, including state-owned wildlife management areas and national forests.graphic

For information on seasons, bag limits, regulations and licenses, contact the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, 1132 Thomas Jefferson Road, Forest, VA 24551-9223, 434-525-7522 or visit www.dgif.state.va.us.

Hiking, Biking and Horseback Riding Trails
Some of the best ways to explore Bedford and the surrounding region is by hiking, biking and on horseback. Check out the information below:

Hiking
Appalachian Trail: The Appalachian Trail is accessible all along the Blue Ridge Parkway. From Bedford, access the trail at Milepost 80.5 Floyd Field, 90.9 Bearwallow
Gap or Milepost 92.5 Sharp Top Overlook.

Blue Ridge Parkway — Peaks of Otter Trails: The Peaks of Otter is located at Milepost 86 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, 8 miles from the City of Bedford.

Sharp Top Trail: 1.5 miles to the summit, it is the most popular trail at the Peaks. It originates from the Camp Store across the Parkway from the Visitors Center.

Elk Run Loop Trail: This 0.8 mile trail begins behind the Peaks of Otter Visitor Center.

Harkening Hill Loop Trail: This 3.3 mile trail also begins behind the Visitor Center and across from the amphitheater.

Flat Top Trail: On this trail, hikers can experience the changing forest ecology as they climb or descend 1,600 feet from the Parkway trail heads.

Fallingwater Cascades Trail: This trail drops 260° below the falling water parking area; hikers should be prepared to climb this elevation on their return. Experiencing this mountain cascade is well worth the effort.

Abbott Lake Trail: The least difficult of the Peaks trails is this one-mile loop around Abbott Lake.

Peaks trail maps are available at the Bedford Welcome Center and the Peaks of Otter Visitor Center. For general Parkway information call 828-298-0398 or visit www.nps.gov/blri.

Jefferson National Forest: The Jefferson National Forest Service phone number is 540-265-5100.

Patterson Mountain Trail: Patterson Mountain Trail is 6.5 miles in length and intersects with Tucker Trail (1.0 mi), Helms Trail (1.6 mi) and Elmore Trail (2.5 mi). The Loop Trail is 1.5 miles. Good views of Price Mountain, Bald Mountain, Potts Mountain and Richpatch Mountain. graphic

Roaring Run Furnace: 1.5 mile loop. Recommended season is all year and is especially nice in hot weather. The trail is easy, requiring limited skill, and features a cascading stream and scenic waterfalls.

Hoop Hole Trail on Pine Mountain: Lower Loop is 4 miles, total trail 9 miles. Lower Loop offers an easy walk through mixed forest with numerous creek crossing. Side trail leads 0.5 miles to the site of old saw mill. Upper Loop provides a more strenuous hike with good views. Iron Ore trail (2.4 miles) connects Upper Loop to Roaring Run Furnace.

Liberty Lake Park: This 60-acre park located on Burks Hill Road in Bedford offers a series of nature trails which includes a paved handicapped accessible trail.

Reynolds Park: This 5-acre park located on East Main Street in Bedford offers a small loop trail.

Smith Mountain Lake State Park: Four trails are offered at Smith Mountain Lake State Park for hiking and biking.

Virginia’s Explore Park: Explore Park has six miles of nature trails. Explore Park is located at Milepost 115 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. 540-427-1880, toll-free 800-842-9163, www.explorepark.org.

Biking
Blue Ridge Parkway: The Parkway offers 460 miles of picturesque travel across Virginia and North Carolina. Ranging in elevations from 600 to 6,000 feet, the road encompasses a variety of ever-changing weather conditions, regardless of the season. Parkway maps are available at the Bedford Welcome Center and the Peaks of Otter Visitor Center or visit www.nps.gov/blri.

Smith Mountain Lake State Park: Four trails are offered at Smith Mountain Lake State Park for hiking or biking.

Virginia’s Explore Park: Explore Park features 12 miles of well-maintained mountain bike trails. Bike trail maps are available in the Arthur Taubman Welcome Center. Explore Park is located at Milepost 115 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. 540-427-1880, toll-free 800-842-9163, www.explorepark.org.

Horseback Riding
Washington and Jefferson National Forest/Blue Ridge Parkway Trails
Day Creek Horse Trailhead
Bearwallow Gap Horse Trailhead
Hunting Creek Horse Trailhead
Hellgate Creek Horse Trailhead

For more information or trail maps, call or write the US Forest Service, PO Box 10, Natural Bridge Station, VA 24579, 540-291-2188.

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