Journey With Us
April 11, 2020 - Three Distances - Gravel - Floyd, Virginia
The long channeled ridges of the Appalachian Mountain range span from Pennsylvania to the Northern reaches of Alabama. These ancient mountains are some of the oldest in the world; forming a natural border between the Atlantic Ocean and the rolling hills approaching the Mississippi River. Their depth and breadth are so formidable that it took almost a century after Europeans arrived in the New World for the pioneering spirits to sling with long rifles and coon skin caps and plunge headlong into the Appalachian Frontier to discover the west.
"Appalachia" is one of the oldest place-names in the United States and its history is as deep as its coves and valleys. The Mountaineer who settles the Appalachians must be equal parts rugged self-reliant and dependent on the grace of God to survive. But to those self-sufficient enough to meet the challenge, life in the Blue Ridge is sweet. The land is fruitful and provides, water is plentiful and clean, and the mountains display all of the artistic culture a simple sojourner needs.
The Appalachian Mountaineer is unique and wonderful. Isolated from a changing world he or she remains independent in all things; changeable only by need and the seasons. William G. Frost wrote that "In this vast inland and upland realm may be found a contemporary survival of that pioneer life which has been such a striking feature in American history."
The Journey takes place in Floyd County, Virginia, one of the least populated and highest mountain plateaus east of the Misissippi. Bordered by the Eastern Continental Divide on the NW side, the Floyd Plateau has always been home to the stalwartly independent. From the moonshiners of Shooting Creek, to the counter-culture insurgence of the 60s, Floyd welcomes anyone "worth their salt" and willing to stake their claim. Its highs and lows beckon with mystery and challenge. Independence and community in equal measure are requisites to survive.
Its in this character that we invite you to dive in, go farther, and take your own Appalachian Journey.