Funds are now available to repair and restore two remote trestles on the Virginia Creeper Trail.
On Tuesday, the Washington County Board of Supervisors approved $487,000 to repair trestle No. 31, using federal funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Still, Vice President Mike Rush’s motion contained a stipulation that funding could be reduced if an additional $100,000 could be obtained in the coming weeks by the Virginia Creeper Trail Conservancy.
“We understand this is a very significant expense,” said Lisa Kestner Quigley, executive director of the Virginia Creeper Trail Conservancy.
Both easels are in Washington County, Virginia, near Taylors Valley, but are located away from nearby roads. The remote location makes it necessary to repair both at the same time, Quigley said.
Funding to repair Trestle #30 has already been secured through the City of Damascus and the US Forest Service which oversees the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, where the trestles are located along the trail.
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Trestles are vital to the economy of Damascus, which depends on visitors to the Virginia Creeper Trail section between Whitetip Station and Damascus — a 17-mile descent that supports several bicycle shuttle services.
Peak season for the trail is March through November. Thus, the repair work on the trestles should begin in December and end in March.