The James River Park System is such a huge part of Richmond’s identity. As summer winds down and cooler weather approaches, we thought we would collaborate with Evan Garrison, owner of our August-Small-Business-Spotlight, Trail Hut, to bring you a breakdown of some of his favorite spots in the city.
Manchester Climbing Wall
The Manchester Climbing Wall is one of three 19th Century trestles from the Richmond & Petersburg Railroad. The climbing wall offers over 40 routes for both new and experienced climbers, and everything between. You can find practice spots for rappelling, top rope climbing, and leading. Just starting out? Try The Ladder, the route closest to the river. It’s a perfect starting point for those who have never climbed before.
T. Tyler Potterfield Memorial Bridge
The “T. Pott Bridge,” opened in 2016, offers one of the best views of the James River you can find in the city. The wheelchair, pedestrian, dog and bike-friendly bridge is 1,600 feet and open 24/7. You can access the bridge from Brown’s Island on the north bank, or Semmes Avenue on the south. Sitting 20-feet above the James, you can expect scenic views of the river, Brown’s Island, and Manchester Climbing Wall.
Buttermilk Trail runs along the south side of the James and is considered the most difficult section of the James River Park System. Steep climbs and quick descents, with several creek crossings, bridge, and changing terrain make this one of the most unique and beloved trails in the area.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can combine these spots with the North Bank trail and hit Garrison’s go-to hike; the 6.5-mile James River Loop Hike.
And if you’re new to the outdoor world, visit Evan at Trail Hut! They are an outdoor consignment store that makes outdoor adventure sustainable and accessible by selling quality used gear and apparel for less than the cost of buying new.