Features: Fall Colors — River/Creek — Wildlife
The Oak Ridge Trail offers visitors a fantastic opportunity to trek through characteristic Virginian hardwood forests, complete with secluded streams often housing signs of beaver activity.
To reach the trail, the easiest route is to park at the Farms to Forest Trail Parking Area and head south on the South Valley Trail
until reaching a junction with the Oak Ridge Trail.
Starting at the junction, follow the yellow-blazed trail as it trends southeast through gorgeous woodlands. Along the first leg of the trail, keep your eyes peeled for signs of a wildfire that blazed through this area just a decade ago. Spanning over a week of continual burn, a 2006 wildfire scorched over 300 acres of pristine forest. To contain and eventually extinguish the blaze, 70 firefighters were required.
A few minutes into your journey, the trail will leave the woods, briefly crossing Scenic Drive before diving right back into the lush undergrowth for the second segment.
In this area, keep your eyes peeled for local beaver activity, as they have been known to inhabit the creeks in this area. While their numbers were stifled during the 18th and 19th-century craze for beaver pelts, they began to return as late as the 1950s as the result of extensive repopulation efforts.
After passing through more beautiful hardwood forests, the trail eventually ends into Old Black Top Road.