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Great trail - challenging but not overly steep and it’s relatively short. Dog loved it and was able to complete the rock scramble at the top. Beautiful views at the summit but also along the way. Decent tree coverage which helps in the summer - we began our hike at 11 am on a warm July day and the only part that was truly bad temp wise was the summit. Recommend this hike! Trail is pretty rocky (smaller rocks), so make sure to pay attention and keep your balance.

If you are looking for a challenging, easy to navigate with plenty of vertical, excellent waterfalls and is in the mid 20s mile overnight, this is an absolutely wonderful trek. Some pretty fine Appalachian vistas, wind sucking climbs, periods of solitude mixed with clumps of tenderfoots and tourists keep it ever amusing. Then comes that close out rock scramble up Old Rag giving this adventure a "something to remember me by signature."
A few items if you plan to do this as an overnight. (1) Water. Assuming you carry a purification system, the only exception to plenty along the way are the stretches from the base of Hawksbill to Indian Run (about two miles after you leave the AT) and of course once you start climbing the Rag until you finish. Other than those stretches you can fill about a liter at a time and be fine. (2) Something about "Stoney Man" was a must do for this 60 something Dead fan. The top was fittingly cloudy but certainly worth the side trip. (3) Try to time your adventure to NOT hit Old Rag on a perfect weather weekend as It can make for more people around than you care for. I had the pleasure of a clear, 70ish degree July Saturday and although the folks were always pleasant, helpful and smiling it made for a bit of congestion and hollywooding. Nothing however can take away from the physical challenge and beauty that is Old Rag. Bottom Line, DO it !!

Easier than I thought, not that bad of a hike

Great hike! Started at Little stony man parking area and it’s a pretty quick hike to the little stony man outlook. Then hiked down to the Stony man outlook which is the main attraction. For a longer hike I looped around the Passamaquoddy trail and it loops effortlessly back around to the little stony man parking area. Passamaquoddy is a narrow and rocky trail but so much fun!

Thanks to Christian who did a great and help full review! I followed his suggestion and did the loop in clockwise. Good thing about this loop is that you get to see everything on the center section of the Shenandoah. Bad part is...24 miles up and down the valley was no joke! Below is my part of the review and tips for future hikers.

Water: I carried three bottles of Smart Water(1L) and it was enough for two days. There is water resources everywhere and if you carry a Sawyer you wouldn’t have a problem.

Camp: finding a dissent campsites was pretty hard. I was using a single man mountaineering tent which doesn’t take much space to setup. And I was doing solo. But if you’re planning to use a bigger then a two men tent or hiking with a group, this could be hard. I camped out at the Nicholson Hollow Trail. (close to the junction of Indian Run ) *There were no camp site at Corbin Cabin so don’t bother to go all the way down there. I left some Pin marks on the map that I thought will be a good site for future reference.

Bears: I personally did not see any. Although, I was told that there’s a bear on the side of the trail from the southbounders on the AT. Hoping to see one but did not encounter.

So, who is this loop recommended for? Some one who would like to take their time and see the breathtaking sights of the back country. This loop will count up to 11 trails and plenty of stream crossing. Be prepared and keep on hiking!!

A very steep trek and extremely rocky. By no means is it an easy trail. I had two separate close encounters with black bears along this trail, but that can happen anywhere in Shenandoah.

A short but very rewarding trail! Wonderful view from the summit.... do not miss this one.

Nice trail for our kids (3 and 5) we got a thunder storm near the end. Walked in late May 2018, scenery was great, and we didn’t come across any other hikers (likely the poor weather).

Started off going NW down the horse trail to the southern end of the Passamaquoddy Trail, and then looped clockwise up to Stony Man and eventually down the horse trail back to the parking lot. Pretty hard rain for the last half mile or so but the views were well worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

It was a beautiful day although the humidity made the views less than optimal.

Great hike with a summit view :)

One of my favorite hikes ever!! Gorgeous views and all types of terrain

I did this as a point-to-point from Compton Gap to the park entrance. it was approximately 10 miles with 900' of elevation gain. Heading in the opposite direction, it is a far more difficult hike. The highlights are a stop at the visitor center and the definite possibilty of seeing a bear.

Some great views from the cliffs here. Majestic!

So many different vistas to view!!! Take the big loop to see them all!

Great hike Saturday, also saw a momma bear with two Cubs just off trail. was a beautiful day.

backpacking
2 months ago

This was an awesome hike that I did as a 2 day 1 overnight backpacking trip. Following is some information that I hope is helpful. I would recommend doing it clockwise so you get to go up the boulders of Old Rag and end on the Fire roads. Note the bouldering is difficult with a full pack, I had to take it off about 10 times to go around, over, under, through the boulders. I was very lucky that I had awesome people around me that helped me lift my pack up a few times on some more challenging sections. Still possible alone, but definitely saves time. Very fun!
Water: There's lots of water along Cedar Run Trail and some fun river crossings until you get to Skyline drive. Then there's not a lot of water until you get to the bottom of Nicholson Hollow Trail. There's a nice stream there you cross 2x. There are also a lot smaller streams after you make the climb up Indian Run Trail, but I'm not sure how consistent they are during dry spells (it rained the day before I went). There's lots of water again along Corbin Hollow Trail.
Camping: I hiked about 14 miles day one, 10 miles day two. You may be able to camp at Corbin Cabin, I think that cabin is more than just day use but not positive. There were a bunch of camping spots on Indian Run Trail. I camped at a great spot just a little before Old Rag Fire Road. There may have also been some spots that followed back country camping rules at the beginning of Corbin Hollow Trail and off of Weakley Hollow Fire Road.
Note, at least this weekend there were a lot of people along the whole trail except for Nicholson Hollow Trail until I got closer to the Old Rag Parking area.
An amazing hike! I think next time I want to hike up Old Rag without a pack! :) ENJOY and Happy Trails!!

A friend of mine recommended this short hike when I mentioned that we were going to Shenandoah. It's perfect if you only have half of an afternoon left and not enough time to do any longer hikes and the view from the rock is simply beautiful. Just bear in mind that if you want to make it to the very top of the rock, there is a little bit of scrambling involved. Even if you choose not to do that, the hike is still very much worth it, and you will get most of the views anyway. Definitely highly recommended!

This should be up there with the hardest ones listed!

Breaking all three of these apart makes for a challenging hike as is. Combining them, though, and you're in for a long day.

We started our day at the Lower White Canyon parking lot and worked clockwise - up Cedar, then Hawksbill, and down White. The falls on the way up Cedar are awesome regarding scenery and sound. The Cedar trail presents the usual challenges of hiking upwards - basic rocky trails and increased elevations - nothing surprising if you hike often. Along with a couple extra stops for pics, water, and catching our breath, the climb took roughly three hours.

Hawksbill is kinda where the rubber meets the road - assuming you do Cedar first. It's generally a steep rocky climb and a good workout in itself. Doing so after three hours up Cedar is exhausting! Add in the fact that we went mid-April and it was still 40°. The summit itself is worth the hike (despite being underprepared for another 15° temp drop and what had to be 40mph winds that day). Plan accordingly! There's a decent stone building you can take a break and eat at if you'd like. In and out might've taken an hour and a half with one break.

To get back to the White trail, you head back towards Cedar (sign post) and head left towards/on the Horse Trail for a couple miles. At some point you'll come to one of the streams that looks impassable, but you'll see a footbridge northward of the stream if you look left. The White trail itself is a pretty nice walk, but I do recommend Cedar first. Going up White looked way more intense as an upwards climb and a lot longer. Either way, it's beautiful and we'll worth pausing along the way to catch all the falls. Spring hadn't really hit yet, so we had clear views of everything through the trees, so the falls may be a little more obstructed mid year.

Our whole day logged nearly 15 miles and 7 hours. (We strayed a little here and there though.)

Recommendations:
- 3-4 liters or a filtered bottle for the streams. There were several options to fill up and the way.
- Hiking boots. Hiking shoes are okay, but you're ankles will thank you on the way down.
- Waterproof is worth considering. We went after a storm and surprisingly kept dry feet. But if your a little more adventurous and wander off the path much, you might get a little wet, especially on the White trail.
- If Hawksbill is part of your journey, consider the temp drop and wind. It can rush or ruin your trip if your not prepared.
- Walking sticks are helpful on the way up. They become a nuisance on Old Rag, scrambling, but there not much in the way on this circuit.

Hope this helped! It's hard, but hardly impossible.

An awesome hike and great adventure...One of the best hikes I have ever been on!!

Two amazing views, a mostly uphill experience.. Spent 8 hours on the whole trail including time for pictures.

Excellent hike with steady ascent the whole way and excellent view from summit. Very rocky so be prepared and aware. Also saw black bears on this hike so beware of hiking alone!

My favorite trail starts 1 mile from my door.

My wife and I Loved the views! Only a handful of people on trail, mostly had to ourselves. Easy to follow, big loop like is shown here will show you all the cool views.

Great view! Hike was rocky but not difficult. Will definitely be going back once everything is green.

Nice easy trail! Beautiful at the top!

Just moved to Virginia and wanted a nice first hike in the state, I’m used to doing longer, strenuous hikes in NC so I was worried about this being too easy since it’s a moderate trail. It was actually a great trail with just enough challenge, rocky and ice/snow in February but still beautiful. View is absolutely worth it, I bought a park pass so I can keep exploring this area.

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