Virginia's Millennium Legacy
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Virginia boasts many miles of trails for those who want an up-close experience with nature. Featured here is the 57-mile-long New River Trail State Park, meandering through southwest Virginia. This linear history lesson of the region’s mining, milling and railroad heritage has many access points for hikers, bicyclists and horseback riders.
Named a Millennium Legacy Trail in 1999, the park follows a former railroad right-of-way through two tunnels and across nearly 30 picturesque bridges and trestles as it parallels the north-flowing scenic, historic New River for 39 miles.
Overlooking the New River, Shot Tower was completed in 1807. The tower was used to make ammunition for early settlers' firearms. Lead from the nearby Austinville Mines was melted in a kettle at the top of the 75-foot tower and poured through a sieve, falling through the tower and an additional 75-foot shaft beneath the tower, into a kettle of water. For a small fee, visitors may ascend the tower.