Otter Creek Recreation Area-Mileposts 60.8-63.6 Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"For almost ten miles, Otter Creek memorably parallels the Parkway on a descent from 1,100 feet to the James River at 650 feet. Though this is not a lofty portion of the high road, the mixed forest of hardwoods (oaks, sycamores, and beeches) and evergreens (white pines and hemlocks) is reminiscent of higher elevations. All along the 8.5 miles of Otter Creek’s dance with the Parkway, broad flats and inviting woods lie beside the meandering stream. Luckily, a wonderful series of overlooks—and the lengthy Otter Creek Trail—permit you to revel in the rich streamside forest.
This entire area is one of the most recommended places to pause along the northern part of the Parkway. This stroll sticks close to the Parkway for its entire 3.4-mile length, so if you hike it one-way you end up miles from your car. You could enjoyably backtrack for a 6.8-mile round-trip hike—the terrain is so gentle that even that distance would qualify as a moderate hike."