Bearfence Mountain Trail is a 1.1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Shenandoah, VA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and birding and is accessible from April until October.
After parking in the Bearfence Mountain parking lot, cross Skyline Drive and follow the blue blazes of the Bearfence Trail. The Bearfence Trail leads up a steep slope that eventually turns into a scramble climb that to the summit of Bearfence Mountain. Blazes mark the best scramble climbing route. The view from the summit is well worth the climb and is one of only three summits in the park that has a 360-degree view. Getting down from the summit requires a short scramble climb, after which the Bearfence Trail returns to a normal hiking surface. The Appalachian trail can be accessed from either one of two right turns from the Bearfence Trail. The second right turn should be followed to complete the one-mile loop. The Appalachian Trail leads back down the mountain to Skyline Drive. The scramble climb makes this trail a unique hike to a great view. Anyone who is reasonably fit and flexible should be able to handle the scramble climb (my eight year-old daughter handled it with ease), but hikers who have issues with heights may want to skip this trail. Near the summit, the climbing path occasionally passes within eighteen inches or so of sheer drops. This is also definitely not the trail for families with kids small enough that they have to be carried.
Great trail. Rock scramble seemed more difficult than moderate. Definitely worth the effort. There are 2 different paths to the top with one shorter and more difficult than the other.
Did this one with my 2 year old on my back. Great hike and a bit of some rock climbing
Did this hike with my two year old on my back. Didn't realize exactly what we were getting into! Didn't go to the tippy top but high enough to see an amazing view! Can't wait to go back... solo.
easy enough hike to great views!!
went there last week and this place is awesome....
Love the views and the rock scramble - but this is definitely not for young children (under 7/8 yo) who can't climb safely on their own. While most of the trail is just hiking w a little bit of scramble, the section to/from the 360deg view is stunning but definitely more breathtaking because of the drop on either side.
It was a good a easy hike, the only problem at all was in the scramble as I'm 60 years old male and a new hiker and came close a couple of times to lose my balance and fall.
I loved the view though and will go back.
Much shorter/quicker than I expected but you can't beat that view!
This was a great trail and especially for morning sunrises. Started in the dark and made it to the top just before sunrise. Recommend for anyone that wants to do a little rock scrambling also.
Great little hike. Went with an adventurous 8 year old and 12 year old. They loved the scramble on rocks. The view was terrific at the summit with a clear 360 degree panorama. We also encountered deer on the trail.
so.much.fun!!!! it is a rock scramble.... if you keep that in mind, you will love it! awesome views!!!
It was great! An awesome experience!
Short, but moderate hike (with a short rock scramble) to the summit, that provides a 360 degree view.
Short trail, but the rock scramble is a lot of fun. The 360 degree view at the top is absolutely beautiful. Bearfence Mountain is one of my favorite places in Shenandoah National Park. :)
The rock scramble was fun and the views were amazing!
We stayed at Lewis Mountain Campground this past weekend, so I started at the Bearfence Mtn parking area, going up the Bearfence Mountain trail to the summit, and then continuing on the AT over to Lewis Mountain. It was an amazing hike! Gorgeous view from the summit - I would say it's the best in the park. The stretch on the AT to Lewis Mountain was also beautiful, with a few tunnels of mountain laurel to guide my way. Loved this hike!