Appalachian Trail: Snickers Gap to Blackburn Trail Center is a 7.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Bluemont, Virginia that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.
They don't call this trail the roller coaster for nothing. We started at Blackburn Trail Center, finished at Route 7 commuter parking, total 7.5 miles (one way, not out and back). A good workout. We also reached Bears Den Rock Overlook to the south of the commuter parking lot by adding another mile (out and back) to the total distance.
This is a pretty basic trail but it is has plenty of elevation changes.
I loved this rigorous hike. Good hiking shoes are a must, on this hilly rock laden part of the AT. I almost ran out of water today and it was a sunless breezy day (brought 36oz, should have doubled, as this would have not had enough on a hotter day). I look forward sharing this special hike with friends and can't wait to do it again.
Excellent trail. Very well marked. Some difficult, rocky terrain. A lot of up and down hills. Loved it.
We backpacked from Blackburn trail center to Ashby Gap through the Rollercoasters in two days. Approx 5500 feet of vertical and carrying 30+ pound packs made this trail challenging. I'm over 50 in ok shape and it took two 11 mile days with 7 hours of hiking each day. There aren't huge mountains but the continuous up and down adds up. We took our two Labradors and they made it ok; very tired like their owners. The trail is well maintained and well marked. There is a mix of rocky, sandy, smooth dirt, gravelly, small stream crossings, great overlooks...basically a small sample of everything you can expect to see on the AT. There were many good water sources, shelters and campsites. Overall I enjoyed the challenge of completing this section and imagine it would be much easier doing an out and back day hike, but then you miss the opportunity to enjoy an amazing sunset and sunrise camping on one of the overlooks.