Catoctin Mountain Extended Loop Trail is a 8.6 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Thurmont, MD that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
This loop is a combination of all of the three major loops in the Catoctin Mountain Park, totaling 8 miles and including Cunningham Falls, Hog Rock, Blue Ridge Summit, Thurmont Vista, Wolf Rock, and Chimney Rock. Ranges from an easy walk to a challenging uphill hike, but the beautiful vistas make it well worth the effort. The park also has many interesting geological formations and wildlife. The trail is very rocky in many areas.
It took us too long to finish because we made several stops, but it was very pretty. I would say it's fairly a moderate to easy hike. Jumping across the gap at Chimney Rock was the only real challenge for me.
it was great
Very nice trail. Perfect for Saturday hike. The whole loop takes around 4.5h.
Beautiful hike to some really nice vistas. The clockwise loop from the Visitor Center seemed to be a more gradual climb.
I recommend doing this loop counter clockwise
Nice hike over varying terrain and some scenic stops.
perfect hike, amazing view and really well maintained trail
good trail. nice long loop. tough, but well maintained. highly recommended.
This loop is one of the best near DC. It is both a scenic trail as well as challenging. I don't recommend the Cunningham Falls spur in the summer. It's typically mobbed with people.
I only hiked from the visitor center to Chimney Rock to Wolf Rock to the visitor center, and then to Cunningham Falls and back. from the visitor center. Chimney Rock was beautiful! Would highly recommend. Cunningham Falls was not as beautiful as Chimney Rock, but overall I can't complain. I started around noon on a Thursday in July. Aside from Cunningham Falls, which was a bit crowded, I only saw a few other people on the trails.
Started at the park headquarters parking lot at 9:30 am on this Saturday. My car was the first one there. By the time I hiked to the Visitor Center 1 mile away, the two parking lots there were 50% full. Around 11:45am, I reached Wolf Rock. prompted by others I saw 3 rattlesnakes among the rocks.
I did the 8-9 mile loop: Visitors Center - Cunningham Falls - Hog Rock - Blue Ridge Summit Vista - Thurmont Vista - Wolf Rock - Chimney Rock - Park Headquarters - Visitors Center. It took me about 4 hours with a nice rest and exploration at Chimney Rock, which is one of my favorite views I've ever seen. Wolf Rock was slightly uneventful, as was the view from Hog Rock, but the hiking in between was gorgeous. Saw some great wildlife too, including a six foot long Black Ratsnake, a bunch of five-lined skinks, and deer. Gorgeous hike, I can't wait to go back!
I did the whole loop from the visitor center to Cunningham falls, to hog rock and back to the visitor center. Gorgeous trail, a little steep at times but overall a great trail. Can be a little rough for dogs; I saw a couple families regretting the decision to bring their pups along.
This was the most difficult hike I've taken so far as I'm a beginner or at the very least, not an avid hiker. But I loved it. It's not easy and really quite rocky so it's rough on your ankles. Make sure you have good boots. I did and was fine. My friend didn't and paid for it. But the views are worth it!
This was my first trail run, and this struck me as a decent starter trail. Signs were poorly put together and uninformative and there were no tree markings to guide your way. The eastern descent was treacherous with tons of sharp rocks. Not too busy, nicely balanced elevation-wise, all around a nice setting for a 9 mile run.
It's definitely rocky and the trail can be unclear at times, but the views are great. Some steep climbs- so be prepared!
Awesome hike, nice trails. Definitely going here again.