Bland County High Point Trip Report

Chestnut Knob (4,409 ft)

Date: May 19, 2000
Author: Fred Lobdell

Chestnut Knob lies on Garden Mountain on the Bland/Tazewell county line. It also lies on the Appalachian Trail and has a trail shelter at the summit. And it appears to be the best jumping-off spot for the hike and bushwhack to BM "Maiden" on Garden Mountain, the high point of Tazewell County.

From the exit on I-77 for US 52 and VA 42, go west on 52/42 for about 4.5 miles to where these routes split. Stay right at the fork and continue west on VA 42 for another 5.5 miles or so to county 623 on the right. There will be a small green sign for Burkes Garden here also. Turn right (north) on 623 and take it over Brushy Mountain, then Garden Mountain, into the high mountain valley called Burkes Garden. (This is a good-quality gravel road over the mountains, but is paved after you drop down into the valley.) Make the first left (west) on county 667 (Medley Valley Rd.) and take this road for about 2 miles to its end at a "T" intersection. Turn left on county 727 (West End Rd.) and take it about 1.5 miles to the end of pavement. From here a good gravel road leads in about a quarter mile to a height of land at Walker Gap. There is parking on the left (south) side of the gap for about 6 or 8 cars. The Appalachian Trail passes through the parking area.

Follow the southbound Appalachian Trail (which goes west here) for 1.3 miles as it climbs, moderately steeply, from Walker Gap (3,450 ft.) to the high point at Chestnut Knob (4,409 ft.). As Ron Tagliapietra noted in his report, the bench mark is just outside the door of the shelter. The highest area appears to be just north of the shelter. This is the starting point for the hike to BM "Maiden" on Garden Mountain, high point of Tazewell County.