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Hike the Five over 5000

Five over 5000 pin at Buzzard Rock.

Enjoy an elevated state of mind while hiking the Five over 5000 Challenge. The Five over 5000 Challenge boasts the five highest peaks in the state of Virginia, featuring Mount Rogers (5,729’), Whitetop Mountain (5,525’), Pine Mountain/Wilburn Ridge (5,525’), Buzard Rock (5,095’), and Haw Orchard Mountain (5,007’). Outdoor enthusiasts will hike each summit while conquering the Challenge, enjoying a wide variety of scenery, from wild ponies to wild flowers. Four of the peaks, Mount Rogers, Whitetop Mountain, Pine Mountain, and Buzzard Rock, run along the famous Appalachian Trail, allowing Challengers to take on the peaks and a portion of the Appalachian Trail. The breath-taking views featured on the Five over 5000 Challenge truly showcase the glory of Southwest Virginia. 

Kile Kirk at Haw Orchard Mountain while completing the Challenge.

The Challenge can be completed in a day for speedier hikers, but most choose to enjoy the mountains and spend a weekend completing the Challenge. Uniquely, the Five over 5000 Challenge has no time constraints, so hikers can complete the Challenge in a weekend, month, or year! After completing the Five over 5000 Challenge, challengers are rewarded with not only pride, but prizes! Visit the H.L. Bonham Tourism Center, managed by the Smyth County Chamber of Commerce, for Five over 5000 swag items, free to Challenge completers! Challengers will receive their official Five over 5000 stickers and completion pins while learning more about the picturesque Smyth County. While visiting the H.L. Bonham Tourism Center, located in the Gateway to Mount Rogers, make sure to shop their collection of Virginia is for Lovers apparel, local goods such as honey and apple butter, and more. Devour a tasty lunch from Poes Pulled Pork, in Chilhowie, Virginia, for the perfect pre or post hike fuel. 

While enjoying the charisma of the Appalachian Mountains featured in the Five over 5000 Challenge, hikers have a plentiful amount of unique lodging options. Enjoy locally owned AirBnBs such as The Lucille or The Houston, operated by the Farmhouse Market in Sugar Grove, Virginia. Savor the homecooked goodness that can be found at the Farmhouse Market while relaxing after a long day of hiking. Other lodging options include the hiker hostel, the Merry Inn, an economical stay for adventure-seekers that provides five star quality and comfort. Located in the heart of Marion, Virginia, the Merry Inn allows hikers to stay steps from the charming Downtown. 

Steve and Lynne Stroud taking on the Challenge for her 68th birthday.

During your time in Marion, devour a delicious meal from the Wooden Pickle Food and Spirits or catch a show at the historic Lincoln Theatre. Marion boasts an impressive shopping scene, having something for hikers of all passions. Marion Outdoors Gear and Resupply has all your hiking and outdoor needs, from new hiking shoes to fun collectables. The Ford Studios has a wonderfully curated collection of art for all to relish and Blue Ridge Outfitters offers a store full of men’s and women’s clothing, as well as, hiking shoes, boots, hats, and more. 

Hikers can venture further into Smyth County while tackling the Challenge. For history-loving hikers, the Museum of the Middle Appalachiansis a must stop destination. The profound history of Saltville is on display for all to enjoy, covering everything from the Ice Age to the Space Age. Visitors will be delighted with Saltville while shopping at the Saltville Emporium or indulging with a tasty treat from the Market on West Main

The open fields of Whitetop

The Five over 5000 Challenge offers hikers a once in a life time experience in the Appalachian Mountains. Rise above the valleys below while climbing the five highest summits Virginia has to offer. Challengers will be enthralled with the scenic views and picturesque peaks featured on the Five over 5000 Challenge. Are you ready to conquer the Challenge? 

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