Life In the Big Green Jolly

Embrace local. Explore often.

Embrace local.  Explore often.

A Bucket List Item For Cyclists – High Bridge Trail

High Bridge Trail

Floating 125 feet above the Appomattox River, High Bridge gives an eagle-eye view of the valley below. Spanning nearly 1/2 a mile, there is plenty to see from the bridge and along the entire 31-mile trail.

Don’t Miss These Events

In the summer, attend the yearly Firefly Festival to watch the river valley light up with thousands of blinking lightning bugs.

In the fall, the trees put on a showy display with their fall foliage. (Just be sure to get there before any hurricane winds move through!)

Check the park’s webpage for ranger-led events. On weekends, there are usually rangers stationed on the bridge answering questions. If a crowd gathers, the ranger will launch into a 15-minute history lesson of the bridge and the park. It’s a fascinating discussion including an explanation of the original bridge (brick pillars still visible) and the rebuild of the new bridge.

What to do at High Bridge Trail State Park

Visit the Bridge

Toddler on woman's shoulder looking through binoculars on high bridge
One of many viewpoints along High Bridge

If you want to make a quick trip of it, park at one of the 2 parking lots closest to the bridge to take a 1-mile or less roundtrip stroll to stand on the bridge.

Bike the High Bridge Trail

Gravel trail at high bridge state park

High Bridge Trail State Park is a 31-mile linear park. The chipped-gravel, flat trail is perfect for biking, hiking, and horseback riding.

Pit toilets are located sporadically along the trail.

Orange leaves along high bridge trail state park

For biking, bring your hybrid or touring bike or rent one in the town of Farmville. Pack plenty of water and snacks as supplies are available only in Farmville.

We’d suggest cyclists park at the Rice’s Depot trailhead – it’ll give you a decent 15-20 miles roundtrip ride to Farmville and back.

Explore the Bridge’s Under-belly

underside of high bridge
Underside of the High Bridge

If the Appomattox River isn’t flooded, then take the trail on the western side of the bridge down to the river. It’s a steep trail and can be pretty muddy, so wear appropriate shoes.

Get a History Lesson

Women and child inspecting canon at Camp Paradise
Camp Paradise

Walkthrough the Camp Paradise exhibit to learn more about the troops stationed there and their role in the Civil War.

Lodging

Farmville will be your best bet for indoor lodging.

High Bridge State Park doesn’t offer camping so check for vacancies at Twin Lakes State Park or Bear Creek Lake (both about 45 minutes drive).

Food and Drink

Farmville is about the only option. The tourism industry hasn’t caught up to the wonders of this trail…yet…so as of 2020, you’ll need to stop in Farmville to refuel.

3 Roads Brewery is located directly on the trail.

Fast Facts

  • Trip Date: November 2020
  • Name: High Bridge Trail State Park
  • Location: Virginia
  • Cost: $5 parking fee (payable via a phone app or cash)
Map showing location of High Bridge Trail in Virginia

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