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To be honest this loop Cedar Run up and White Oak canyon down is not difficult at all. Very easy hike even for my friend who never hikes. Enjoyable hike with lots of waterfalls and places to swim. There are about 4 times needed to wade across the stream but its not deep just remove your shoes and cross. The trail is very well maintained and is not steep.

Great hike! Lots of water along the trail and the waterfalls are great. If it’s been raining prepare to get your feet wet, the main entrance was flooded and you have to cross at your own risk. There was one other creek crossing about shin deep and lots of deep puddles along the way. It gets really good when you start to climb. There’s lots of rock and opportunities to roll an ankle. Definitely worth going back over and over again!

This trail took my friends and I just over six hours to complete. The six hours included a lunch break, several trips down a natural water slide, and a couple of stops for the dog to swim. It is a difficult trail—personally, I think it is more difficult than Old Rag.

The connecting fire trail between White Canyon and Cedar Run is uneventful, but the first and last portions of this loop make the hike worthwhile. We did not realize that we’d be able to ride the natural water slide of Cedar Run, but when we saw others doing it, we knew we couldn’t pass up the opportunity. We were soaked on the hike back to the car with no regrets!

After you enter the trail, I suggest making a right to see White Oak Canyon first. You can then end your hike by swimming in and sliding into the pools of Cedar Run.

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.

Nice hike for my dogs and myself. Saw a timber rattle snake on the trail a little too up close and personal, but it must have been Sunning or sleeping on the trail as we quickly jumped back and turned around. Well it is the mountains right?

Nice hike. Northern spur overlook was fantastic included deer visit. . Southern spur views obstructed by foliage. Will try again in winter.

Challenging trail but fun. Lots of waterfalls.

hiking
18 days ago

*** Warning: Hornets are active along this trail ***
On September 1, 2018 two hikers/runners were stung by hornets(?). A week ago, a horseback rider was stung 25 times.

on Bull Run Trail

22 days ago

Great trail normally. Tried to hike it yesterday from Bull Run Park. The boardwalk when you initially start the trail was heavily damaged. You can get around the damaged sections without too much difficultly. The stream crossing beside route 28 was impassable.

Cedar Run and Whiteoak Canyon is a wonderful set of trails with beautiful scenery; a waterfall lovers pardise. if you are in great shape and have a full day, this hike is worth it. It is also very difficult, people (like me) who are not in the best condition will struggle. Only take the loop if you are capable of strenuous hiking and have directions and time.

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.

We did this hike on 8/25/18. It took us about 7 and a half hours with breaks. We took our two black labs with us. They did great, but the are in excellent shape and are very active dogs. I would not take small or out of shape dos on this hike.
It is a difficult hike. We started at the lower parking lot. The first third of the hike was the most strenuous, but also the most awesome. Beautiful waterfalls and swimming holes. The second third was a horse trail that’s a pretty brutal incline. The final third has a rock water slide. Plan on getting wet throughout the hike. Bring a few pairs of extra socks. This hike is not for those who are out of shape. We are in our mid-40s and we’re out of gas by the time we were done.

My first time in SNP! I usually go for much longer hikes, but this was a great outing for a spontaneous trip. Short and sweet, but moderately challenging because of the rocky terrain, so I wish I’d brought my hiking boots just for the ankle support. When you get to the split, you can go left, right, or straight. I suggest going to the left to see the geologic formation first, then coming back and doing the right hand trail to see the viewpoint. It’s a good snacking or lunch spot. Also, there were fewer people on the trail than I expected for a Saturday, so I had a lot of it to myself! Definitely dog and family friendly, though.

Pretty cool trail. Did it on an exceptionally foggy day, the fire lane looked like something out of a dream. I will say don't underestimate this trail. I've done it twice counter-clockwise and Cedar Run can break some spirits. The trail itself is rugged and requires constant attention to foot placement. Took us a little over 6 hours. Trekking poles recommended!

Great hike with some challenging river crossings

Great day of hiking and splashing around with my son.

Awesome trail. I did it with my wife and 3 teenage daughters we all had a great time.

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

hiking
1 month ago

This is a great day trail to take kids and pets on. Its fun and easy. And its beautiful.

If you go now, the water levels are as high as they have ever been in a long time and it is amazing. bring water shoes or prep to get wet. went yesterday from the cedar run lot to the byrds nest lookout past skyline, and back again.

Great hike. Be prepared for. Rocky path.

Completed 8/6 going counterclockwise- not the hardest hike in Shenandoah but nothing to laugh at, probably earns its “hard” rating. Very entertaining hike- the water on this this trail does not disappoint. The 6 or so waterfalls that range in size and look often have space to explore underneath and appreciate the view if you desire. Basically 7 out of the 8 miles on the loop are following one of the 2 rivers- switching from swift running waterfalls and rapids to slow moving, deep green pools.

Took me about 6 hours to complete, taking my time and going for a short swim in one of the natural pools (would highly recommend.) This loop can easily be done quicker if you’re in decent shape and not stopping frequently.

Side note: the waterfalls and pools are popular and attract a decent crowd on a nice summer day. It’s not overcrowded, but if you’re looking for solitude this is probably not the hike. That being said this is one of my favorite I’ve done in Shenandoah and has some of the best water features & scenery in the park. Definitely should be on everybody’s Shenandoah to-do list.

This was a beautiful trail. There are waterfalls and swimming holes everywhere and the water is very clear. There was a big rattlesnake along the path on the rocks (posted a picture) so keep an eye out. This was strenuous, but worth it. This states pets allowed, but it should state not recommended. I have a jack Russell that hikes long hikes with me, but this was way too rocky for her. We carried her most of the way and her paws are still irritated.

Great Hike. Did it counter clockwise and highly recommend that. Slide on way down was awesome. Must do! Elevation is a lot but once you hit the fire road it is a gentle climb. would highly recommend. Did with 4 kids 17-10 in age and had no issues. You will get wet on this hike. We took our time started at 9am and finished 4:30. Lots of swimming and eat lunch.

Great trail. We did this trail last month and only saw a few other people hiking it as well. Great views at the top. Added bonus was seeing a black bear on the trail near the parking lot.

A great adventure! I started at the lower parking lot (Weakley Hollow Rd) and went anti-clockwise, as recommended. A lot of uphill on the first leg along the river, with just gorgeous waterfall action along the way. I looked ahead at one point and saw a pair of ears pointing up in the air. It was a bear, sitting upright on rocks, taking in a view of the waterfalls. It ran up a tree (effortlessly!) as I approached, and then came right back down again! It hung out just about 50 feet or so from the trail as I passed.

You have to cross the water at the very top of the waterfall -- the best route that I found involved being almost knee deep in water. You will get wet on this hike. You really have to be very cautious on these water crossings -- you could easily slip on the glassy-smooth rocks, and fall and break something.

After crossing the waterfall at the top, you take the yellow trail to keep moving anti-clockwise, heading back towards the lower parking lot (and eventually back onto the blue trail). About half way around I had a feeling of being over the most challenging part of the hike, with plain sailing from here, Wrong! The back half of the hike is downhill through rocks, and rough on the joints. You need to be extremely careful on this section -- it would be very easy to make one bad foot placement, and fall and break something. And you'd be a long way/time from getting help.

A mile or so from the end of the trail I came across a snake -- sunning itself on a rock right on the edge of the trail. At this particular spot there was no way to continue other than to keep going on the narrow trail -- literally about a foot from the snake. As I stood debating my next step, a hiker came from the other direction (he was going clockwise) and stopped on the other side of the snake. He thought it looked like a copperhead. I took a picture of it, and the ranger at the end of the trail confirmed that it was indeed a copperhead. The other hiker and I both stepped on by the snake, and it didn't seem to be bothered, but you definitely want to be on the lookout! One little tip that I picked up -- never grab onto anything (a tree, for example) if you can't see what's on the back of it (where your fingers will be!).

There's access to some beautiful swimming holes along the way down -- I didn't venture in, but some folks were in taking a dip and having a lot of fun,

I recently have done the Old Rag and Little Devils Stairs hikes (both in Shenandoah, and both wonderful in their own ways), and think that this one was maybe the more challenging of the three. There's not a lot of rock scrambling on this one (like there is on the way up Old Rag), but I found the long downhill through the rocks to be quite strenuous.

Overall, this was a fantastic hike! Highly recommended! Oh, and it took me about 5 hours -- pushing along at a steady pace, and I did stop for lunch at the Slide waterfall for around 15 minutes.

This trail kicked our butts. We made it but took about 7 hours which included time to soak and slide. We went down the fire road first so the falls were in view the entire way back up and up ... and up some more. I’m glad I had hiking sticks, great boots, snacks, extra water and a supportive tribe. Make sure to take a copy of the map — there are several trails intersecting and the SNP marks all trails with blue blazes making it difficult to recognize your trail. It was a great way to spend an entire day enjoying massive waterfalls. It’s quite an accomplishment for us.

According to my Garmin Fenix, we hiked 12 miles on this trail, and it took us 7.5 hrs.

It had rained for days before, so the natural slide was too rough to do. We went in for a quick swim at the lower falls, instead. This hike was very strenuous, with very rocky terrain and river crossings. We saw other people breezing through, but it took our group of 9 about 7 hours. Gorgeous scenery following the stream and cascades, but it was hard to look up from your footing.

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