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Great climb. Hiked up from little devil stairs parking lot. Glad I had poles, water crossings a bit dicey at times. Nice walk down with some views!

hiking
4 days ago

Good day hike. We went to the right/CCW. After a short down hill there’s a steady ~3 mike uphill climb. Back 1/3 had a steep decline but it was on the short side. Awesome view of Shenandoah at the larger waterfall. Pretty muddy given all the recent rain. Tree cover along entire trail. About 5-6 stream closing that were easy but fun.

backpacking
4 days ago

Just got back from an overnight with my husband and our dog from Half Moon Mountain. We had a late start on Friday evening (only two hours before sunset) and knew we had to move quickly if we didn’t want to set up camp/ find a site in the dark. We hiked the loop counter clockwise per other users recommendations. We found a camp site (one of the only sites left!) about 3.5 miles in next to a stream. We definitely weren’t alone, surrounded by about 7 other tents but it didn’t bother us. The walk there was mostly uphill, up and down quite a few steep gullies. It was hard work, but nothing horrible, considering we had 20lb packs and we also were practically jogging, trying to beat the sun. The stream worked out perfectly to replenish our water before we left the next morning to finish the loop. When we started hiking the next day, it was straight uphill from the campsite till the summit. Reached the summit in about an hour and a half from camp and had the place to ourselves. When we came down we had a portion of maybe 1.5-2 miles of VERY steep trail. I was SO GLAD we had hiked counter clockwise when I saw what I would have had to walk up if I had gone the original way of the loop. After that it leveled to a grassy, wide walkway. Wowwww that felt good on the knees after all the steep, rocky downhill. From there we continued on to pass many streams. I recommend waterproof shoes for sure. There was a tricky part at one of the stream crossings where the correct way to go didn’t even seem to have a trail, but we had used GPS so we could see we needed to keep going straight (literally almost in the stream) and then after about 5 mins the trail became clearly visible again. I’m not sure if it’s because of the amount of rain we’ve had this summer, but the blazes were very faded in a lot of sections. After all the stream crossings it was a lot of rolling hills, grassy, muddy, small rocks. Great hike overall. I agree with the other users saying this hike is more ‘hard’ than moderate because of the one, very steep and rocky section, otherwise moderate terrain and elevation. Campsites are very limited. On the summit we only spotted about 3 sites. Where we stayed, was the most plentiful. View is outstanding and a nice chilly wind comes off the summit. I would definitely do it again. Also, although we saw maybe 10 people when we camped, we only saw two other people on the trail the entire day. If solitude is your thing, this would be a good day hike. Lots of freshwater sources for backpackers and dogs!

hiking
6 days ago

Hiked this with a buddy and his dog. It was a nice drive out there. You hike about a mile out to the loop. We went left or clockwise and it was pretty muddy from rain the previous day. The first 2 miles of crossing creeks was a warm up for the real creek crossings and then the haul up a biggg hill. There were some campers at the first view of the waterfall. Looked beautiful and would camp there. The next mile and half were diff camping/view points with breath taking views. The last 5-6 miles was calming and very cool to walk thru. Made a rock tower in the little creek/dam/island area a mile from the start was awesome to chill in after a long hike.

Great short hike for a fall day (hiked 9/29) with good views. Not too many people on our Friday morning.

The view at the top is great and good for short hike. Not a 5-star though because we were aware of Skyline Drive for the first half of the hike. Trail traffic was moderate on a Wednesday.

on Dickey Ridge Trail

hiking
8 days ago

All up hill from the start, no significant decline until you turn around. Not many views, just deer and bears. It's a great trail to train for mileage and incline.

A short but steady incline that takes you to some incredible views. This is a popular trail with a parking lot, bathrooms, and water at the bottom. Expect to see people, possibly quite a few if it's a weekend or holiday.

Nice trail. Very rocky path all the way up. I brought my three and a half year old son, and he completed the whole thing by himself (while holding my hand). Good trail for kids as long as they can hold onto you so they don't trip on one of the rocks.

We started muster after the mile maker 19 and parked. Walked down the fire road all the way and then came back up the Devils stairs. There are several creek crossings which are doable. Look for the blue marks on trees or you may miss where you should cross. Stable shoes (not sandals) are a must. It gets steep at points and you will have to actually use hands and feet to step up and climb.

I’m very active and it was a good workout. My counterpart had some difficulty with the steep inclines and elevation. However, you can stop and rest. It was mid 70’s and sunny. We were sweating hard and definitely bring water.

I loved the various fungi and water fall spots. Didn’t see any wildlife, not even birds but I found it to be a very beautiful and a peaceful hike.

We did see a few dogs along the way, one with 3 legs even! But bring water for them. Not sure they should be drinking the creek water even though it’s crystal clear.

I’d recommend this hike. It took us 4 hours but could have easily been done in 3-3.5 with my normal hiking partner.

10 days ago

lots of cross stream path, and climbing rock part is real fun!

Beautiful view - just stunning. This hike I would rate as a little more difficult than moderate- only because my 8yr old daughter had a tough time. So beware if you plan on bringing any children. Take your time and take breaks. Kids aside- rocky but well maintained trail. Most of your view is through the forest of course on the way up- you will pass an old home- chimney remnants. Really cool- once you reach around 3000ft there are views- beautiful once you've reached the rock. Worth it.

If you want a quick morning hike with great views this is a good one. It is also kid and dog friendly. I would certainly rate this hike as Easy and not Moderate. Views from the peak are amazing, though it can be very crowded on weekends.
As people have stated get there early as parking fills up fast. Also with parking limited don't be a tool and take up 2 parking spots. Someone today slammed their car door into mine leaving a nice big scratch, thanks.

Good hike but no views. Post hurricane the water was flowing strong and the rocks were slick. Busier than I thought. Not in a rush to do it again but certainly not a bad SNF hike. Good for dogs that love water (and can navigate some rocks aka my black lab)

Not that hard of a hike with great scenery on the way up and a astonishing view at the top. Great for family’s though it will be hard for younger children.

If you like walking in hardwoods this is a really nice hike. There are plenty of streams for water. Took my dog who had a great time. I definitely agree with reviewer that this should be rated as hard, at least clockwise mainly d/t distance and one wicked climb up a stream in a couloir. CCW is more gradual but that 900+foot ascent in a stream bed is a hike going CW. I’ll definitely do it again. There are scenic parts with big views best seen once leaves off. The trail is very well marked and clean. It’s doable on a mountain bike if you’re fit with only 2-3 hike a bike sections (definitely bike it CCW). Unfortunately heavy rainfall has washed out a portion of trail near the bridge but it’s still easily recognizable. All in all it will be one I do with my dog often because it’s easy enough to get around while kids in school and get back to pick them up in Winchester, 45 min away.

Beautiful trail, with lots of scenery. Most of the trail was in the shade when we did it in the morning with the exception of the summit.

This is a really great loop for when you want to get out into nature, but maybe aren't looking for a full day 6-7 mile, or many hour trek. The 2.6 mile loop is well shaded, and has a gradual incline but is never too steep (if you go counter clockwise). The views from the top are beautiful, and there are a few more lookout points with equally as beautiful, but even less populated, along the way. A bit rocky on the trail, but if you watch your step you should be good to go. Not too crowded anywhere on the trail except for at the summit itself, but well worth the trip nevertheless.

hiking
1 month ago

Chose this trip to check the box on the tallest waterfall in SNP. Chose to go CW and knock out the elevation gain quickly. Mile 1 and 2 were nice gradual inclines through rocky dry stream beds. It was hard to make good time through this area. Mile three was quite the accent almost 1000 ft. The view of the falls is from the top. Not a lot to see with all the foliage still on. Unfortunately not trails access the bottom of these falls.

If you are looking to just see the falls I would recommend an out and back. Another option is an out and back from the Mathews Arm area. Given that I always opt for loops and mileage I continued around and down the Beechers Ridge Trail. Not much to see here just steady declines and forest. There are tons of good places for backcountry camping along this route.

I finished the trip with a visit to a few nice pools were the access trail meets the loop. Based on the number of bathing suit clad folks I passed on the way out I believe it is a popular swimming destination.

Great trail! I did the hike backward by accident, so make sure when you park at the lot you start by going downward and not up the fire trail. But if you want an added challenge of hiking up a 3 mike gravel road, would recommend doing it in reverse!

Really fun to hike along the stream and waterfall. No real “views” of the valley, more of a pure nature and challenging hike with rock scrambles

What a workout!! Rocky uphill climb. The view at the summit was beautiful. Well worth the sweat! Downhill on the way out is a relief, but rocky. Traffic was a bit high today..lots of people on the trail and at the summit. Be careful to follow the correct posts markings, one couple we ran into had walked down the wrong trail and had to climb back up to get back on the trail back. We all burned some serious calories today!! So much fun! FYI They charge $30 to enter national park by vehicle.

hiking
1 month ago

it's a beautiful hike with a stream that keeps you company in the beginning. you...i can see nature at its best. We saw pretty does grazing on the side of the trail. The hike isn't difficult, a little up hike but not hard at all. ENJOY!

trail running
1 month ago

Great trail to hike with the family or if you want to go running, I would recommend.

Fantastic hike with several water crossings and quite a bit of semi-rock scrambling. Lightly trafficked so it’s wonderfully quiet. Definitely better to do after it’s rained recently, as the falls are fairly small. Not great for waterfall views but very strenuous and fun to rock hop across the streams.

Great hike - rocky hike up the side of a waterfall/creek for the first 1.75 mi, with several stream crossings, then about .25 miles of trail until you reach the fire road. Fire road is a little over 3 miles with good tree coverage and an old cemetery near the base. Went on a weekend and saw a total of 8 people on the trail. Took an 1:45 with minimal stops for water. With all the rocks and the stream crossings I was happy I wore my waterproof hiking boots, but I saw others wearing trail shoes and running once they hit the fire road.

Great hike, even though it downpours on our return. Amazing views, beautiful flowers, somewhat challenging terrain on the salamander trail coming back to the parking lot. Be sure to return on Salamander Trail or you will end up at the wrong parking lot and have to walk a mile on skyline drive. We caught the error before we had gone too far and climbed back up.Dog friendly hike.

hiking
2 months ago

This was a pleasant hike. A lot of stream crossings, and use of (very) old fire roads with a lack of erosion control makes for some rugged terrain in spots. Didn’t see anyone else on the trail, which was quite nice.

Amazing trail! Very rewarding with the views on the summit. Recommended.

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