Like the same thing we've done the past few years, we're going to be setting up to cath the 'bubble' after Trail Days, the Annual Thru-Hiker party. We stay until the Wednesday after Trail Days and strike camp after lunch, because a nearby Hiker Hostel throws a Hiker Feed that evening. We don't want to compete with that! (Plus there's always hikers sitting around waiting for the shuttle into town that always offer to help us strike camp...)

We're hoping additional people want to come up and join us, for part or all of it, this year. Best would be someone or a group to come up halfway through and resupply us with fresh fruit and supplies, help us give it all away and be free to stay for hiking, backpacking, or biking the famous Creeper Trail to Damascus. With a 4-5 day time frame for Magic there is ample opportunity for you and your friends to come up and help. Trust me - its a LOAD of fun talking to the thru-hikers, and your efforts are appreciated immensely!

Be sure to bring your own chairs and maybe a few more for hikers, extra firewood, grab some ice from the campground and bring your own camp food.

I will have a 'base camp' set up at this trailhead.

This time span is in the middle of the "Hiker Bubble" of serious thru-hikers. The Annual Trail Days event is held right before we set-up and while Saturday, Sunday and Monday are eventful, Tuesday and Wednesday are usually jammed with hikers appreciating the 'Magic'. The Sunday before Trail Magic is always Mother's Day, and Trail Days in Damascus is always the weekend following that.

2020 Trail Magic Dates:
SUN 5/10 MON 5/11 TUE 5/12 WED 5/13 THU 5/14 FRI 5/15 SAT 5/16
SUN 5/17 MON 5/18 TUE 5/19 WED 5/20 THU 5/21 FRI 5/22 SAT 5/23

You should consider driving up the night before your planned dates, either stay in the Campground 1.7 miles away (Grindstone Campground - see CONTACT PAGE) or discuss crashing at the Trailhead near the Trail Magic Tent. See FAQ's for more information on camping. By staggering the helpers like this we will ensure a steady supply of Fresh Fruits and new goodies. We will be trying to man the Trail Magic from at least 7:30am until late in the evening, and because I plan to camp at the trailhead, I will be attempting to offer early morning coffee and keep it going well into the evening with a campfire and hot drinks - the evening campfire with Thru-hikers is always a blast!

Prior to or after your scheduled dates, we strongly recommend planning to stay over for some of the BEST hiking into Grayson Highlands and to the top of Mt. Rogers to see the wild ponies and wild longhorn steer. The area is riddled with trails for anywhere-you-want camping, or grab a bike rental and shuttle and do the Virginia Creeper Trail, one of the more famous bicycle trails on the East Coast (almost all downhill!).

While my basic Trail Magic setup will certainly be appreciated by hikers, having you come up allows for a wider variety of foods, snacks, fruits and drinks than I can bring up with me. Even if you can only do a day, join us for what will be a fun adventure, offering much appreciated 'stuff' for the thru-hikers... though we don't mind section and weekend hikers from enjoying it either.

Our most important dates for needing help is the Saturday early afternoon for set-up, and the Tuesday and Wednesday for the crowds and tear-down. You could easily skip out and go hiking up in the Highlands Sunday and Monday - though we ask you NOT stay in the shelters or nearby, reserving them for the Thru-Hikers.

We're also seeing a larger number of 'Alumni' who we've met when they came through on their hike in years past, knowing we will be up there following Trail Days, who stop in to say hi, help a little, and stay the night before headinghome. Join the fun!


ver. 8.1 ~ 2012-