VA & WV Ladder
55, 72, 33, 250, and 39 between I-81 in Virginia and WV Route 219 are
some of the very best riding roads in the east. Each of these roads
crosses a series of ridges which leads to spectacular scenic and
twisty rides. Riding this ladder is one of the highlights of an
Appalachian trip. The 455 mile ride below can be ridden in either
direction. I will describe riding it north to south. The route begins
at the junction of Route 55 and I-81 in Strasburg, VA.
Start west on Route 55. Just after you
cross the West Virginia State Line you pass the
Kac-Ka-Pon Restaurant in Wardensville, WV. The restaurant is
known for its pie!
Kac-Ka-Pon Restaurant Pie
Continue west on WV Route 55 as it twists
and turns beside the newer and straighter U.S. Route 48.
VA Route 55
Old VA Route 55 crossing under Route 48
- Photo by Dave Hallock
Turn left on U.S. Route 220 in Moorefield,
WV and follow it and Route 28 south and west to Seneca Rocks.
Seneca Rocks - Photo by Dave Hallock
Turn right on Route 33 and prepare to ride
the fantastic WV loop of Route 72, Route 219, and Route 33.
West Virginia Route 72 through the
Monongahela National Forest is a narrow winding road that is a joy to
WV Route 72
WV Route 219 is a great riding road that
travels north-south through Eastern WV. This route uses Route 219 as
the western end of the ladder.
Start back east on Route 33 to Seneca
Rocks. Enjoy the view of the serrated rocks while stopped at Yokum's
Store at the corner of Routes 33 and 28.
Route 33 is a superb ride with great
twists and views.
Continue east on Route 33 and stop at the
scenic view overlooking the German Valley.
Route 33 overlooking the German Valley
- Photo by Dave Hallock
Keep riding on Route 33 all the way to
Hinton, VA and then turn right on Clover Hill Road. Follow it and the
other back roads in the ride file to U.S. Route 250 in Churchville,
VA. Believe it or not, each road in this route is even better than the
one before. Route 250 has some stretches climbing and descending
ridges that are as good as any riding in the region. What a great
Stop in the town of Monterey for a very
friendly vibe and food at
High's Restaurant in Monterey, VA
Monterey gives a glimpse of the next great
Route 250 Scenic View - Photo by Dave
Leave Monterey and traverse some more
great ridges and continue to WV Route 219 in Huttonsville, WV. Turn
left on Route 219 and follow the wonderful curves south. You will like
WV Route 219
inn on Route 219 in Mingo, WV is a great place to stop for the
night. They had a nice tap selection and great nightly music on the
deck. Johnny Staats stopped by with his Mandolin while Debbie and I
were at the Inn:
Leave the Inn and continue south on great
WV 219 to Marlington, WV. Turn left and start east on Route 39. This
was my favorite road on this route. What a great combination of curves
and scenery. I want to go back!
Stop at the Dan Ingall's Ovelook on Route
39 a little past U.S. Route 220
Dan Ingall's Overlook on Route 39 -
Photo by Dave Hallock
Continue east on Route 39 all the way to the
end of this route in Lexington, VA. Lexington is a great & pretty
southern town with a lot to see. Be sure to stop at the great Southern
Inn Restaurant for terrific Southern cooking. The Southern Fried
Chicken was the best that I have tasted.
Southern Inn Restaurant in Lexington,
Don't forget their awesome pecan pie!
Southern Inn Restaurant Pecan Pie
Lexington is right near I-81 and the Blue
Ridge Parkway so you can easily continue on your journey.