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Trip of the Month

Peaks of Otter
The Underrated Adventure

Whether you have lived in Lynchburg long or not, you no doubt have noticed the majestic peaks west of campus or maybe have heard people mention them in casual conversation. These peaks are known as the Peaks of Otter. Just 45 minutes from Lynchburg off the Blue Ridge Parkway, this mountain range is truly an iconic local treasure.

The twin peaks are aptly named Sharptop and Flattop. Sharptop’s classic triangular shape offers a short yet steep grade, concluding with a spectacular 360-degree view of the Lynchburg Valley to the east as well as the beginnings of the Shenandoah Valley to the west. No matter how many times you do this hike, it still challenges and impresses. Summit elevation reaches 3,875 feet!

The bigger brother, Flattop, packs a punch as well with challenging grades and switchbacks while offering more solitude and trail mileage. It concludes with a summit boasting eastern and western views as well as a side view of Sharptop. Summit elevation reaches 4,001 feet!

Peaks of Otter is such a popular destination that it also offers a seasonal Visitor Center, Campground, and the year-round Peaks of Otter Lodge to make your stay more memorable and accommodating.

If steep mountains are not on the docket, try a shorter hike around beautiful Abbott Lake by the lodge or the two more gradual hikes: the historic Harkening Hill/Johnson Farm and the tranquil waterfall hike of Fallingwater Trail.

Be sure to plan your hike beforehand, bring a friend as well as tell a friend where you’re going, and pack enough food, water, and layers to remain comfortable in changing conditions. Start your adventure today:

Local Trip Thoughts


Hiking Trips


Camping Trips


Fishing Trips

  • (VA Blue Line Map) For the fly fishermen craving native trout and beautiful rural and wilderness settings. Remember to adhere to private property and fishing regulation laws!
  • The South River is a popular spot for large rainbow and brown trout in Waynesboro, VA.
  • Try your luck on the James River for large muskie and smallmouth bass.


River Trips

  • The James River offers many adventure opportunities. Enjoy a tubing trip down the many routes near Lynchburg with Twin River Outfitters or James River Reeling & Rafting.
  • The New River and New River Valley offer unlimited outdoor recreation opportunities. Looking for a relaxing float with easy water? Try Independence to Baywood (Map) For the seasoned paddler try Bridle Creek to Independence (Map)
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