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Beautiful views! And a bit of a workout but worth it!

A little late but we went June 2017.A great hike and really refreshing after getting to the channels on a hot day.

Great hike with a scenic reward!!!

Beautiful views. A perfect hike for a beginner to moderate biker. A good workout!

Such a unique hike! The trail leading to the channels is very straight forward and easy to follow. It is pretty much all uphill there and downhill on the way back. The channels themself feel like something out of a fantasy novel! BE SURE TO REMEMBER WHERE YOU CAME FROM! You can easily get lost down in the channels while exploring the amazing rock formations. I recommend following the lead of Hansel and Gretel and leave a trail of nuts or candy so you know how to find your way out, but be sure to clean up after yourself! You don’t want to end up alone trying to find your way out for almost an hour. If you find yourself in the area and have a few hours check this out!

Hiked this in December, took the counterclockwise route as suggested. There were 10-12 stream crossings that were very challenging. A few of them can be navigated just staying on dry portions of rock, but most had rocks that were just too far apart to take a step. Solutions include bushwacking off the trail to find a better spot to cross, shimmying across fallen logs, or just take off your shoes and trudging through the ice cold water.

Aside from the initial stream crossings, the hike is not very challenging beyond Devil's Bathtub. There is a sign saying something like "Warning: next 5 miles very strenuous and rugged", but it was a relatively easy walk through the woods compared to the first part of the trail. First 2-3 miles took 3 hours, remaining 5 miles took 2.5 hours.

Overall it was a lot of fun; navigating the stream crossings added an element of challenge and decision-making.

20 days ago

beautiful hike, a little muddy from the rain but not difficult. hiked with my 9 year old.

20 days ago

well marked, travelled it my a 9 year old

Leg smoker, lots of rocks on the trail, so wear good boots! The view from the top is incredible. This is a popular hike so once you make it to the end, there are quite a few people climbing on the rocks for photo ops.

One of the best hikes in SWVA. Go when the leaves are down and you'll get long range views the entire hike.

I love this hike. It is moderate. The views are stunning. The Channels are like a mystical maze. Great for dogs and children if you want to bring them along.

My friend Chris is a professional hiker and trail runner. We recently did this trail together and he absolutely smashed every Strava KOM on the map. Truly a freak of nature as we tried to keep up with his record blazing pace. The hike was OK but his performance was incredible definitely would give it a 12 out of 10.

My husband and I did this trail last last September. It's a good trail, but you spend 90% of the hike in the deep forest, just guessing when you'll reach the clearing... With little to no scenery... Only when you get to the top do you see the beauty...

The views were great from Charlie’s Bunion as it was a cloudless day. Still it was a bit disheartening to see the brown pall of smog in the Tennessee valley. Absent the smog, one could see forever, well almost. There was a lot of snow and ice on the trail. Depths ranged from 6 to 18 inches. The snow was no problem except where hard packed in places by hikers. There was also considerable ice, particularly on the frequent natural or man made steps. My wife’s bad knees combined with the ice made the return trip a bit hazardous. Because temps were above freezing at New Found Gap there was a lot of muddy slush the last 1/4 mile or so to the parking lot. But, we made the 8-mile round-trip without incident, albeit slowly. This is a great hike with excellent views into both NC and TN. There is no way this is a “hard” hike. It is moderate at the most, as the elevation change is minimal given the 5000 foot starting point. Snow cleats would help right now, and hiking poles are recommended. Our hike was 12/26/18.

Absolutely breathtaking at the top! The air and atmosphere at the Bunion itself is pure and blissful. Our trip was a little precarious due to icy paths in Mid-December, but it is well worth the trip! Not to be missed!

September 2017- such a pretty hike on the NC/TN spine. The overlook was very cool. Would highly recommend this one at the park. Took us about 4 hours.

Great hike with great views. One of the best hikes I have done on the east coast. Not sure what makes it “hard” as it was pretty level. The hardest part was dodging the pony droppings.

on Rough Ridge

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike off the Blue Ridge Parkway with amazing views.

Moderate not hard

Great hike! The trail distance and terrain was described well for this hike. Saw several traces of bears but no actual sighting. Enjoyed the hike and especially the view at the top. We were fortunate the weather was cool and the view from the top on this clear day is spectacular. Hiking poles, water, lunch and something to lay on at the top will make this hike special.

Love this hike! Fontana Dam was closed to vehicles but you are still able to walk across. Added an easy 2 miles. Very quiet and moderately challenging trip up to the tower which rewards you with breathtaking views! Highly suggest this one!

2 months ago

I have wanted to hike this trail for over a year and finally got to tackle it today. It's rocky and muddy but manageable. The views of the mountains and the Linn Cove Viaduct are amazing! Well worth the trip.

awesome hike well worth it!

Tough trail, quiet a bit of an incline and very rocky. However, totally worth the view!

hiking
2 months ago

Amazing views my 10 year old loved this trail. Bring your camera for great photo op!

The day was fogged in, so unfortunately we didn’t get any of the awesome vistas. But we could imagine them. We did however still have a great hike. The leaves are gone at the upper elevations now but there is color (every shade of green) in the moss, ferns, and undergrowth. Still quite amazing. I’d rate the trail as moderate, and found it a nice leisure hike. We stopped at the shelter for a bite to eat and were greeted by a die and two fawns grazing in the reeds in front of us. That was our ‘10’, along with the shades of green undergrowth. We decided to head back from there since there was no expected view from Charlie’s Bunyan ; we’ll be back on a clear day. I rated 5 stars as I didn’t want to down rate it for the weather. This has all the makings of an awesome trail.

hiking
2 months ago

Very fun trail with amazing views! In my groups opinion it wasn’t very hard like the reviewers say (and we aren’t in very well shape like most). Would recommend this trail to anyone.

Awesome day with the family! The reward was well worth the hike.

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