I made my annual (at least) trip to Damascus, Virginia on my birthday this year. My real birthday, June 21st, not Huck’s (April 7, 1933). He’s a lot older than the actual me…

I was accompanied by my granddaughter and we made use of the wonderful outdoor activities while we were there. There was a bunch of riding on the Virginia Creeper Trail, as well as hiking on the Appalachian Trail. We found a playground and train cars to play on in the town park.

Crossing the bridge at the Damascus park

The stores in downtown Damascus have lots of great shirts and hiking supplies. Sundog Outfitters even came out to the trail and gave the little one a stuffed bear! Great people in this town. There are several outfitters in town that will drive you to the top of the mountain with your bicycle and drop you off so you can take a 17-mile downhill ride back to town. More hardy riders ride up the 17 miles first then back down. Me, not so much. We rode the other direction for a few miles towards Abingdon and found it to be beautiful and not too challenging. My cup of tea – or craft beer as the case may be. That evening we rode to the edge of town and went for a short hike up the AT. It was the equinox and it was still quite light after 9 pm. As we started up the trail with a 4-year-old, we noticed a hiker in a shelter just up from the road. We went a 1/2 mile or so and as it became darker, we decided to come back while we could barely see to walk. Safety first for the old man and young lady. It would be hard for my son to carry both of us out… When we got back to the hiker in his berth, he commented that he didn’t think we were going to be coming back. No faith in our mountaineering abilities. It gave us a good laugh, though! Off to campfire and then to bed.

As for the beer, Adam the founder/brewer at Damascus Brewing was in ¬†for a bit of a surprise when I showed up at 11:30 am on my bike and requested entry. Always the gentleman, he invited me in and hooked me up with a birthday beer! A fine porter called Beaver Fever. His theme is the best! There are always plenty of styles on tap with beers to suit anyone’s palate. They are just finishing up an outdoor area behind the brewery that’s going to be a fine place to hang out while drinking delicious beer and hearing good music. They are currently open Thursday – Sat with live music. Check it out if you are in the area. Heck, just go there even if you are not in the area because it’s a great place to hang out.

Huck and Adam hanging out

The real reason for the trip is to stock up on some fireworks for Independence Day. If you turn towards Tennessee on South Shady Avenue, in a couple of miles you will arrive at Crazy Herb’s Fireworks. The have a great selection and will show you ¬†videos of the items in action on their handy dandy laptop. These are the real deal, stuff that isn’t available in Virginia. We always put together a great show from the items there. He even hooked me up with a birthday present. Unfortunately, I will have to blow that one up! If you know what I mean…

Huck hanging out at Crazy Herb’s Fireworks near Damascus, Virginia

Huck was there!