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Appalachian Rides

VA & WV Ladder

 

 

Routes 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.


Ride Map

 

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.


Seneca Loop

 

West Virginia Route 72 through the Monongahela National Forest is a narrow winding road that is a joy to ride.


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.


Seneca Rocks

 

Route 33 is a superb ride with great twists and views.


Route 33

 

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 ride!


Route

 

Stop in the town of Monterey for a very friendly vibe and food at High's Restaurant.


High's Restaurant in Monterey, VA

 

Monterey gives a glimpse of the next great ridge ahead.


Monterey, Va

 


Route 250 Scenic View - Photo by Dave Hallock

 

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 this road!


WV Route 219

 

The Brazen Head 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: Video.

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!


Route 39

 

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, VA

 

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.