Henry County takes another step toward new state park

Published: Apr. 22, 2022 at 8:34 PM EDT
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HENRY CO., Va. (WDBJ) - In Henry County, a new trail system has opened along the Mayo River.

It offers new opportunities for hikers and mountain bikers. And the community partners who made it happen hope it’s the start of something much bigger.

A ribbon-cutting Friday morning opened more than three miles of trails, and dedicated the kiosk that served as Joseph Fincher’s Eagle Scout project.

“I know our troop is going to come down here all the time,” Fincher told WDBJ7.

Trails lead to the point where the north and south forks of the Mayo River meet, and the area where William Byrd surveyed the dividing line between Virginia and North Carolina in 1728.

A variety of wildflowers is now in bloom, and the trail offers postcard-perfect views of the river.

Brian Williams is the Virginia Program Manager for the Dan River Basin Association.

“You can ride a bike. You can hike down to the confluence of the river. You can hike from Virginia to North Carolina. You can paddle from Virginia to North Carolina and still be within a contiguous state park,” he said during the ceremony.

The property includes more than 630 acres, and Henry County Administrator Tim Hall said further development of the state park will be a priority when local leaders sit down with area lawmakers.

“We’re going to bang that drum and get some advocacy going and hopefully at some point we’ll have a full-blown state park that brings even more people to see what we’re lucky enough to have,” Hall said in an interview.

So what comes next?

The state will work on a master plan for the property, seeking input from the community on what the Mayo River State Park should look like when it opens.

For more information, click on the following link:

The new trailhead and parking lot are located at the end of Pratt Road near Spencer.

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