In honor of National Trails Day, I’m posting the final entry in “On the Trail with Darcy and Lizzy.” I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the views and sights along the trip taken by Darcy and Elizabeth in Boots & Backpacks. Of course the Appalachian Trail continues for a thousand miles in each direction, and I may add a few more entries to this series eventually. Because [spoiler alert!] our dear couple have many more hiking miles ahead of them!
Today we explore Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, where Darcy and Elizabeth spent almost a week. Alas, the Hunsford Bed & Breakfast and its proprietor, Kent Rosings, are fictional. But there are several historic B&Bs in Harpers Ferry, and history buffs and outdoor enthusiasts alike will find much to do in the area.
Southbound AT hikers get a view of the Potomac River from Weverton Cliffs in Maryland.
The trail then descends the ridge and joins the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Towpath for several miles until the AT crosses the Potomac via the footbridge. Welcome to West Virginia!
Much of the town of Harpers Ferry is part of a national historic park for good reason. From the park website:
THE HISTORY OF HARPERS FERRY HAS FEW PARALLELS IN THE AMERICAN DRAMA. It is more than one event, one date, or one individual. It is multi-layered – involving a diverse number of people and events that influenced the course of our nation’s history. Harpers Ferry witnessed the first successful application of interchangeable manufacture, the arrival of the first successful American railroad, John Brown’s attack on slavery, the largest surrender of Federal troops during the Civil War, and the education of former slaves in one of the earliest integrated schools in the United States.
Of course I must mention the headquarters and visitor center of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy located in Harpers Ferry. This is the famous place where thruhikers pose for pictures. It is an important milestone along their journey.
Time for Darcy and Elizabeth to head back to NYC! Thanks for following along with them this far.
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