For a real back-in-time experience, stay at Olde Surber Station, a 19th-century restored mountain farmhouse on scenic Craig Creek. Located on 90 acres in the midst of the Jefferson National Forest in Botetourt County, Virginia, Olde Surber Station offers remoteness, lots of wildlife, a pristine mountain river great for swimming, tubing, or canoeing and loaded with fish, miles of hiking trails just for you, and an abandoned rail bed for biking.
In the early 20th century a steam train traveled through the area, hauling iron ore, passengers, mail, and other goods. Surber was a whistle stop station on the old rail line, hence the name Olde Surber Station.
Furnishings are mostly from the early 1900s, including a working 1930s wood cookstove in the large, eat-in kitchen. (There is also a vintage electric stove from the 1940s.)
Four spacious bedrooms provide sleeping space for 10 people. The downstairs master bedroom, with a comfy antique iron double bed, is the lower floor of the original 1860s log cabin and is decorated in primitive country style. It contains a gas log fireplace.
The upstairs bedroom of the original log house features an alcove queen bed complete with bed curtains. A second upstairs bedroom, completely paneled from floor to ceiling in original wood planking, has two double beds.
The third upstairs bedroom has a double bed. The upstairs full bath has a stand-up shower, and the downstairs full bath has a old-time slipper tub, great for a relaxing soak. There is also a cute half-bath under the stairway.
The house also has a comfortable parlor (living room) with a second gas-log fireplace and a DVD/VCR and CD player. The dining room/library seats 8 comfortably. Outside is a spacious back yard for cornhole games or horseshoes. (The original functioning outhouse is also available, for those who REALLY want the 'back in time' experience!)
Several bicycles, kid kayak, two Grumman canoes, and numerous inner tubes for floating are available for use. Fire pits provide a place for stargazing and marshmallow roasting, and singing silly songs.
A retired couple live in a second house on the property and help to caretake the place. They are available if anything is needed. Other neighbors are a half-mile away. (The owners live down the old rail bed about a quarter mile.) Craig Creek access is about 150 yards from the house. The owners' creek camp, about 1/4 mile down the railroad bed, is also available for day use, with a beach, lawn area, shelter and firepit.
The owners have intended for Olde Surber Station to provide a rustic, remote place for folks to get back to nature. This is not a place for those looking for lots of modern conveniences, like dishwashers and satellite TV! But if you're looking for wilderness, wildlife, clean air and water, beautiful mountain views, and LOTS of peace and quiet, this might be your place. (Note that window air-conditioning units are installed in the summer for your comfort.)
Kids and well-behaved pets are welcome. Even though the house is filled with antiques, this is a house to be lived in, not a place where you’re afraid to put your feet up!
Keywords: Farmhouse, hiking, mountain biking