Just an hours drive from Washington, D.C., Sky Meadows State Park in Clarke and Fauquier counties, offers a peaceful getaway on the eastern side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. With rolling pastures and woodlands, the park boasts beautiful vistas of the foothills and access to the Appalachian Trail. Its rich history is shaped by the development of agriculture and the impact of the Civil War. Activities include hiking, fishing, picnicking, horseback riding, primitive camping, and nature and history programs. Please click here to view a short video of the park.
Walked this yesterday in the snow and saw nice views of rolling hills. The section within the park is a bit short, so added a bit on the Appalachian Trail to increase the mileage. All trails are well marked. The Appalachia Trail does hook back up with the park trails, even though it is in't obvious on the alltrails map. Paid $5 using the honor system envelopes at the entrance booth to park; saw some people get ticketed for not paying, so I'd pay the fee if you stop by an no one is manning the station.
The cool thing about this trail is it connects with a few others. Hiked Piedmont Overlook to Ambassador Whitehouse to Appalachian South Trail to North Ridge to South Ridge and then finished on Boston Mill Road to connect the loop. Although it was overcast, the views were beautiful. I would love to hike this trail again. My roommate also brought his dog, a few rocky parts, but very well maintained trails and mostly grass fields. Stopped at Paris View for some time just before connecting with the Appalachian Trail.
The hike starts off going uphill through a cow pasture. I'd say the first 1/3 of the hike was just all uphill. Some nice views along the way up though! I went on a Sunday morning on a holiday weekend, and there were plenty of people, but mostly spaced out. There are so many trails that I only ran into a dozen or so other people. Overall, I enjoyed the hike and would do it again!