Explore Out and Back - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Out and Back Map

Loved this trail. Fun and beautiful! Terrain was challenging but very doable.

Was 100% worth my time. You’re going to be hiking up at a steep angle immediately, which I appreciate. It also gets moderately wet on the way up. Cat Rock is fun to climb and Bob’s Hill has two amazing views.

7 days ago

Beautiful view of New York and the George Washington Bridge. Would not recommend talking kids or dogs. Rocky trial

If you're looking for an easier hike, skip the first 5 miles and park at the lot at little bear creek rd. The first 5 are brutal. If I were to do it again I would probably skip the first 5 and just do an extra 5 further down the trail. Maybe extend it up to angel falls? There are 3 places to camp and 3 fire pits a little after mile 11 that are very nice. There is also a very nice place to camp around mile 8-9 I think? There are multiple other spots along the way as well. I don't think there were any past mile 12 though.

Best swimming hole hike in Virginia. Lots of places to cool off in the water along this trail. Summer time favorite. I guess news has spread because its definitely become more crowded over the years.

This is not the best way to do this hike. The best way is to do a loop hike from Skyline Drive. Start at the Hawksbill Gap Parking area (Milepost 45.6) and start down the Cedar Run Trail to the Whiteoak-Cedar Run Link Trail and up the Whiteoak Canyon Trail until you reach the Whiteoak Canyon Fire Road. Follow the fire trail back to your car. You will see 2 waterfalls on the Cedar Run Trail and 6 waterfalls on the Whiteoak Canyon Trail. This is a 7.3 strenuous loop with 2794' elevation change.

Great trail. Not a difficult hike to the falls since it’s downhill but the hike back up can be absolutely exhausting! I like the loop with Cedar Run for the full experience.

21 days ago

loved this trail, I've hiked it twice. great views and an easy trail

Really fun, not that hard.

on Mason-Dixon Trail

24 days ago

Difficult, but beautiful! Would do it again as a group hike.

Words can’t describe the beauty of this trail. We hiked from Hell’s Hollow to Alpha Pass - 6 hrs. Very icy and slow going in March. Will do again and go the Kildoo path when the ice melts.

28 days ago

One of my very favorite trails on mdi. This is not an easy trail especially if you are scared of heights. But let me tell you the views are worth every step.

It is not advised to hike down this trail, only up because of the iron rungs , then you can go down around the bowl, even connect to the beehive if your feeling real froggy and walk the mile back to your car on the tar or catch the bus back to the parking area.

Excellent trail!! Lots of climbing and huge rock formations the entire way. Almost 1.5 moles towards the end the up hill battle ends. Great workout for the legs. If you are into rappelling, be sure to bring your gear. Lots of great places for it.

Great hiking trail, very well maintained and beautiful views, always something new to discover. My wife and I hike from Hells Hollow parking lot to McConnell's mills and back. I don't recommend hiking it in the winter, can be very dangerous. Early spring is usually muddy and U have a couple of small run off creeks to cross over.

Great hike!

My dog and I did this trail 2 days ago. great hike! Very scenic! We took Lewis fork and wow did I under estimate the trail, it's pretty tough. I enjoyed every step though. I will definitely visit the surrounding trails! the horses are so cool. they were on the trail and refused to move so we scooted past and pet them on the way past!

2 months ago

Completed the hike 2/20/18 to bag the state high peak. The lush, mossy forest made for neat scenery but also made for a wet and rocky trail. Majority of the trail, as well as the summit, is in the trees which leads to a fairly underwhelming view, but none the less an enjoyable hike with some scenic views here and there. Wish the ponies were out! Trail is longer than the 10.8 mi posted, RT from the trailhead is 12.6 miles. Glad to have VA's tallest peak in the bag!

amazing views, wild ponies, doesn't get much better in the south east

This is a very strenuous challenge. Along the river was beautiful. Some of the small waterfalls were pretty. We went when the trail was snow covered in the morning & it warmed up to mid 40’s. Parts were extremely muddy & other parts were snow covered with ice underneath & very slick. I’m glad we did it but I would definitely wait for good weather. Lots of scrambling over rocks along the river. Prepare, plan ahead if you do the entire trail. It’s a long haul. I only recorded the second half on the way back from the bridge. Ended up being 12 miles & took us a total of 6 hours & 15 minutes of moving time.

rock climbing
2 months ago

A hike that is more like a climb. Great during the dry seasons, before the snow and ice hit. I don’t believe this trail would be possible to complete in rain, snow, or extreme wind.

Technical skills not required, but willingness to climb some scary-looking spots is key!

2 months ago

This is probably my favorite hike on the east coast. We did this over a cold winter weekend. The wind was fierce atop the mountain, but the views were breaktaking. The wild ponies were definitely the highlight of the trip. Be careful and pay attention to the route - we ended up getting lost more than once. I reviewed the trail in great detail here for thoes who want to check it out before making the journey! https://adventuresinroamance.com/backpacking-in-the-south/

2 months ago

Pretty short hike with breathtaking views along the way. There are steep drops along the way with a fair amount of exposure. I did not think it was too scary, but people who are scared of heights might want to take it slow on this hike.

2 months ago

was a hard trail but a lot of fun and full of great views.

3 months ago

Favorite hike in Acadia!’

3 months ago

We did this over Thanksgiving holiday to bag another state high peak. It was cold but clear. The trail is easy with no steep parts. The views were just ok, as compared with other eastern mtns. The weird thing was the summit was in a group of trees? No view at al from there. We didn’t see the ponies, but their poop was everywhere on the high trail. The only thing that makes this hike tough is the length, it’s not that long but it’s frankly boring for at least 75% of it, makes it seem longer.


Love this trail! It’s like a jungle gym on steroids. Sadly, the day we did it was foggy so not much view, but we still loved it.

Hiked this 11 mile long out-and-back trek a week before Christmas, starting from the Manor Area Visitor Center, covering both the blue trail and the yellow trail. The yellow trail between the two Bob’s Hill Overlooks and Cat Rock was very quiet. I only saw a handful of other hikers on the two uphill sections of this hike. The sunken trail leading up to Bob’s Hill was covered with fallen leaves at this time of the year. Careful with this section, particularly if you hike down this section as lose rocks may be hidden beneath leave piles.

It took me 5 hours to complete the hike, taking many stops for overlook views and for snacks along the way.

If you agree that the nearby Catoctin Mountain Extended Loop Trail (8.6 miles) should be rated as hard, then I think this Cat Rock/Bob’s Hill Out-and-back hike should also be rated as hard.

Great hiking trail. A few difficult areas made the hike fun. Parked at laurel lake dam and walked in. Great scenery as most of the hike is along Cumberland river. A lot of hills for the first 1.5 miles then the trail elevation evens out for most of the walk. Only made it in to bark creek and turned back. Great views of a waterfall on the creek made the entire trip worth it. Make sure not to miss out on this view. Took about 6 hours complete this hike which was, I would guess, 7 miles one way.

4 months ago

Best hike, climb in the park, well maintained , might want to be in shape to reduce risk, good photo ops

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