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

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hiking
6 hours ago

Beautiful spring. Water was down a little so we were able to climb some of the rocks

Not much parking so get there early! Views are amazing.

Loved this cave!!

on Eagle Rock Loop

backpacking
2 days ago

We hiked this trail in October, and had a 7 year old with us. We ended up camping 3 nights, as we were not in a hurry at all. We took lightweight hikers tents, our backpacks had camelbacks, and we ate MREs. I am not exaggerating when I say we probably crossed water 60 times, but sometimes it was just small streams that you could step on rocks to get across. I took water shoes to change into to cross the bigger water crossings so my shoes could stay dry, then I would change back into my sneakers. When I said MREs earlier, I feel they made all of the difference in our energy level. I couldn’t have made it on trail food. We had 2 each per day, and saved something out of them for breakfast. We had some extra water to start, but we took one of those little filters to filter the stream water so that we could pack a little lighter. When we parked and started, we went to the right first. We had studied the map and felt this was the toughest part so we wanted to tackle it first. Brush Heap Mountain has no mercy. It’s a long, steep climb that you think will never end. At the top was a little spotty cell coverage if you wanted to check in with the rest of the world. Other than that, I don’t believe we had any cell phone coverage. So be sure you check in and out with the park rangers.
It was a challenging, beautiful hike. Lots of different terrain to see and experience. We are in our 40s, and had a teen and a 7 year old and we completed it.

Moderate trail with an awesome view at the end

Loved this trail! I would like to point out that the trail is very close to cliff edges so I wouldn’t recommend bringing children.

Really pretty in some areas. Thickly wooded. If you're by yourself it's an easy hike. However, it's DANGEROUS if you have two big dogs with you because the a large portion of the path is narrow (my dogs were shoulder to shoulder) and on the edge of a cliff.

It is amazing what nature does. I was truly suprised when I saw this natural phenomenon!

Mediocre trail but view of Whittaker Point is amazing and worth it. Drive to trail head is quite difficult on steep rocky roads. Once you get to parking the trail is the one on left side of road as you are driving up mountain. Lots of people hiking this trail for such a remote area.

Easy hike, obvious trail even covered with leaves. I’m out of shape, so if you think you are, too, don’t be afraid of this hike. The view is worth it! Just amazing. (Start early, preferably a week day, if you want some peace and quiet.)

hiking
9 days ago

Easy hike even if very poorly marked (marking the trail would at least give novice hikers an opportunity to learn). Lots of good fall foliage and trickles of water over the bluffs. A few small trails beginning at the very back of the campground road; those were better time investment (I’m fickle; I like the payoff). Day was cool and damp with thick fog impeding any view. But felt amazing at the top!

Fall leaves were remarkable! So beautiful!

Easy hike. Great viewpoint

scenic driving
13 days ago

This was 15 minutes off the main driving route. Crazy to think Vikings may have been to Eastern Oklahoma. The runes were covered by a covered bridge type structure and difficult to see thru the foggy plexiglass. The woods, leaves and waterfall were pretty but a bit of a detour. There was a nice bathroom, gift shop and friendly staff.

fantastic in the fall. easy trail. bring a hammock. lots of good spots to enjoy the views. definitely going back with a crashpad.

Great trail to check out the fall colors if you can time it right. Easy trail. There is an incline at the end when you come back but nothing I thought was too bad. The trail is very popular and was very busy and parking was a mess. For how popular this trail is it would be nice to see them put in a parking lot someday. Great rock formations and the views from the bluffs are amazing. It’s a cant miss hike but don’t expect peace and quiet on the weekends.

Gorgeous views form the crag and trail leading up to it. Beautiful trees and creek crossings. Very busy during the Fall months and parking is difficult along the gravel road.

Long bumpy road to trailhead like others have said. In was easier than out as out felt mostly uphill and I'm old and out of shape, lol! Views were amazing! It was crowded on a October Monday including a hammock couple that had been there all day. :( we walked a bit further and found a nice spot for lunch and when we were done the place was empty. So if it's super crowded the day you come I recommend waiting around a little while and you will probably get it to yourself. I'd say this is a must do hike if your in the area.

Long bumpy road to trailhead like others have said. In was easier than out as out felt mostly uphill and I'm old and out of shape, lol! Views were amazing! It was crowded on a October Monday including a hammock couple that had been there all day. :( we walked a bit further and found a nice spot for lunch and when we were done the place was empty. So if it's super crowded the day you come I recommend waiting around a little while and you will probably get it to yourself. I'd say this is a must do hike if your in the area.

Beautiful and amazing views! A bit crowded and commercial feeling but deff going to give it another try.

Moderate hike but amazing view at the point. Rough road going in though

on Eagle Rock Loop

backpacking
17 days ago

We hiked the entire loop starting at 2pm on 10/25 thru 5pm on 10/28. We started the trail at Winding Stairs and went counter-clockwise. Amazing trail with plenty of fall colors this time of year! Day 1 we did about 4 miles which was a great start. One hill at the beginning and then relatively flat for the remainder of the day. Day 2 we hiked about 8 miles which put us right before the start of where you do a number of climb and decent areas. Day 3 we did about 7 miles. A tough 7 miles this is the part of the trail that makes it rated "hard". We stayed at the top of Bush Master after a tough hike up to the top. Day 4 we hiked 9 miles and finished the trail with a mostly downhill hike with some up and down.

There are many campsites along all sections of the trail, so we never worried about having a place to stop. With that said we planned to land at a campsite about 1 1/2 hours before sunset to setup and have dinner before dark.

There was a lot of water on this trail. I lost count but there were probably 20 water crossings. On all but maybe 5 you could cross without getting your shoes wet. On 5 the water was about knee deep and we crossed using water shoes. I imagine the water level varies based on rainfall and time of year.

There was no cell coverage on the trail with the exception of the top of hurricane knob and the top of brush heap mountain and even there it was spotty.

One of the top hikes I have done. The terrain, type of trees, rivers, bluffs, meadows and valleys varied substantially throughout the park. All was scenic.

Highly recommend!

backpacking
20 days ago

We did the entire loop 10/26 thru 10/28. It’s a vigorous trail so fitness is important. Water was everywhere so didn’t need to carry much more than what I could drink in 60-90 minutes of activity. No cell service other than on the top of Brush Heap mountain but it’s a task to get there. Awesome experience with incredible views, particularly in the Winding Stairs area. Water was about 50 degrees and was a great refresher on the feet.

Busy trail on weekends.

backpacking
21 days ago

I hiked the loop on 10/21 and 10/22/2018 and was very impressed with its scenic beauty and difficulty. Make sure you are in decent shape, especially for the descents on the Athens Big Fork Trail. No need to carry much water. If you get thirsty just bend over and fill your bottle. Some of the best tasting water I’ve ever had. I didn’t bother with water shoes, the crossings are far too numerous. Changing shoes before and after each crossing is just not feasible in my opinion. I hiked with wet trail runners and medium weight wool socks and had no problem with blisters.
There is zero cell service on the trail. Also, some of the mountain roads to the trailheads are paved with hatchets and knives. Flat tires are very common so be prepared.
I’d give this trail 5 stars but then how would I rate the JMT?

beautiful fall morning very easy hike

backpacking
23 days ago

Nice solo hike. Can be tough if you are not in shape. Campsites could use to have trash picked up. But all in all an awesome trail with amazing views. Also look for several natural springs. I saw 4 this trip.

One of my favorite hikes

Very unique place!!

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