Coffee and Sunrise Hikes
You can’t ask for a prettier time of year, and a sunrise hike is one of the best ways to enjoy it, especially since you’ll probably be able to fit it into your busy schedule. Here are some ways to catch the first light of dawn, either on a guided excursion or your own, and where to fuel up on coffee and breakfast afterward. With Shenandoah National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway in our backyard, there are miles and miles of trails to explore!
Book a Guided Sunrise Hike with Doah Outdoors
New and locally owned Doah Outdoors is guiding people for sunrise hikes, in an “everybody-hop-on-board style of outdoor adventure.” Doah Outdoors’ owner, Amanda, is dedicated to helping clients break out of their comfort zones and overcome any fears or intimidations they may feel when it comes to outdoor adventures. Amanda seeks to create a community of outdoor enthusiasts, regardless of skill level. One of the most popular hikes is to the top of Humpback Rocks, conveniently located off of the Blue Ridge Parkway, to witness the wonder of dawn spreading over the Rockfish and Shenandoah Valleys below. However, you can customize your experience to suit your needs. Sign up on the website if you’re interested in joining social hiking groups, and look forward to warmer weather when Amanda will lead tube floats on the South River.
Other Invigorating Morning Hikes
If you’re not quite ready for a hard-core mountain hike before the sun comes up, plan an early morning stroll on the newly expanded South River Greenway. You’ll get to wave at all the other early birds out running and walking their dogs, and you’ll enjoy the birdsong and the early morning mist rising from the river. Bonus: You won’t have to drive far to get here.
Head into Shenandoah National Park to catch the sunrise from many of the scenic overlooks. Try Beagle Gap Overlook (MP 99.8), which looks east over the Piedmont region from 2,495 ft. You might also head south to the Rockfish Valley Overlook (MP 1.5) on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Where to Get Your Coffee and Breakfast After the Hike
You’ll definitely work up an appetite on your hike, so why not have your second cup of coffee and soothe your stomach at one of these Waynesboro coffee shops?
The French Press is a cool coffee shop located in downtown Waynesboro adorned with local art and cozy vibes. Their menu features lots of delicious coffee, pastries, plus soups, salads, and tasty paninis. You can dine in, sit outside enjoying the sunshine, or take advantage of online ordering and pick your food up at the curb.
Farmhaus Coffee Co. delivers a yummy menu of “bevvies” including a variety of drip, iced, and pour-over coffees as well as lattes, espressos, and signature beverages like the “espresso tonic,” “the solution,” and “iced lavender London fog.” The shop also supports the work of local artists by displaying it on their walls. Enjoy fresh pastries from Season’s Yield Farm and other foods like toasts and sandwiches. There’s plenty of indoor and outdoor seating, free Wi-Fi, and you can order ahead or bring your own mug for a 25-cent discount on each cup.
The old photo booth building that now houses Micah’s Coffee might only be 48-square feet, but it serves up plenty of great tastes. You’ll find gourmet custom coffee drinks, teas, hot chocolate, and smoothies along with organic and fair-trade options. You’ll even find caffeine-free blended treats for kids. This locally-owned business offers speedy service and has been voted a Valley favorite a dozen times.