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Devil's Marbleyard, near Roanoke

va

Star Star Star Star Star

Distance: 1.5 miles


Often spoken of by the locals, this trail is well worth your time. Take a friend or group of children with you, just to see the look on their faces when they get to the top!
  • Belfast Trail sign
  • Cross the wide bridge
  • Belfast Trail
  • Blue Blazes will lead you
  • Keep following blue
  • Still enough energy for
  • Horse trails cross often
  • Find a good walking stick...
  • Past hikers
  • Grade change
  • Cross the water
  • Are we there yet?
  • No blue blazes
  • Good trail for late June/July.
  • Entrance ramp 1
  • Continue on trail to the right.
  • A view from the bottom
  • Keep going along the trail
  • Entrance ramp 2
  • Late June/July
  • Entrance Ramp 3
  • Looking down the marble yard

Ideal for

  • hiking enthusiasts
  • naturalists
  • campers
Trail Description
A steep incline for most of the trip, but well worth the time.  The trail is not marked well, as you can follow the blue blazes until the end of the Belfast Trail.  Continue to follow the trail, using the suggestions listed on the map.

Time requirements
The hike itself is not that long, 45 minutes by yourself, an hour and 15 minutes with a family.  You will definitely want to plan time to stay at the marble yard and explore. 

Directions to trailhead

  • I81, exit 175 to Natural Bridge/Rt. 11
  • Turn onto 759
  • After spotting Glenwood Iron Furnace on the left, turn onto 781
  • A short distance down this road you will see parking on the left and the trail entrance for Belfast Trail.  This is the starting point.

Notes/Add-ons
Where did this all come from, you ask? The answer is found in a geology question. The Antietam Quartzite found at Devil's Marbleyard (Arnold's Valley) is the result of a rise in sea level relative to the land (transgression), over 500 millions years ago. Then a pure quartz beach. This might help you believe it.  The blocks and boulders at the Marbleyard have tube-like structures running parallel to one another.  Likely, these are the fossilized remains of cavities where a worm-like creature lived. 

Feeling a little tired from your hike?  Why don't you try dinner at the Pink Cadillac Diner.  This 50's style diner has excellent burgers and delicious milkshakes.  4347 S. Lee Highway Highway

Trail Reviews & Comments

READERS COMMENTS

Star Star Star Star Star
Matt McGee
Sep 02, 2013

I've done this trail four times now including last week. Great hike, definitely worth your time and a truly unique experience. I would highly recommend if you are planning to scale the rocks to the top to take someone with you that has been there prior. It can be tricky locating the appropriate spots for decent as going down hill on the boulders is dangerous.
In addition, they state this is a good family affair. I would only take individuals who are used to the outdoors and are self willed about hiking. Youngest age would likely be 10 and have a few hikes under their belt. Other than that, a great place and one of a kind!

Star Star Star Star Star
Matt McGee
Sep 02, 2013

I've done this trail four times now including last week. Great hike, definitely worth your time and a truly unique experience. I would highly recommend if you are planning to scale the rocks to the top to take someone with you that has been there prior. It can be tricky locating the appropriate spots for decent as going down hill on the boulders is dangerous.
In addition, they state this is a good family affair. I would only take individuals who are used to the outdoors and are self willed about hiking. Youngest age would likely be 10 and have a few hikes under their belt. Other than that, a great place and one of a kind!

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