East of Damascus and southwest of Wytheville in the Grayson Highlands State Park, the Rhododendron Gap Trail meets the Appalachian Trail in a meadow where wild ponies graze. Follow the AT as it passes through spruce groves and looks out on craggy pinnacles, then takes you back around to the Rhododendron Gap Trail.
To reach the hiking trailhead from Roanoke, take US 81 south to SR16, head south to US 58, and proceed west eight miles to Grayson Highlands State Park. The trailhead is at the Massie Gap parking lot.
Overall, Grayson Highlands State Park is the 3rd most popular hiking trail of all 23 hikes in Virginia.