Reviews (4695)
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Recordings (3036)
Janelle Hoelscher reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 3, 2020
HikingRockyScramble

So much fun!! I plan on coming back. Always ppl on the trail with you and it often got blocked up on the more difficult parts. I found the climbing was easy but I noticed shorter people struggled a little more. Having a partner can really help with the climbing.

Lisa Ghidotti reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 3, 2020

I hiked this a few weeks ago...the views were magnificent but the trail was super crowded with people forming lines on some of the key scrambles. Those rock scrambles were hard core and All Trails rated this as hard and it was definitely one of my hardest hikes to date due to the rock scrambling. Get to the parking lot by 7:30 a.m. on weekends during the summer!

Lisa Ghidotti reviewed Brown Rocky Mountain Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 3, 2020
Running

I hiked this today and was blown away by the amazing views for a true moderate hike. I parked at the overlook on Skyline Drive and went counterclockwise on the lollipop loop (All Trails goes clockwise)...and I would definitely do it this way again! The first half of the hike included the ridgeline and best views, which I appreciated more when I was still fresh and before it got super hot. It also gave me a steep descent and gradual ascent. I didn't see any wildlife of note, and only 3 people the entire time (all going clockwise). The trail itself was nice, a little overgrown in a few places and a little rocky on short stretches,, but most of it was dirt, lined with moss, and minimal rocks and roots. Several stream crossings but easily navigable. Definitely one of my favorite hikes!

Sierra Kennedy reviewed White Oak Canyon Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
Hiking

This is probably the hardest hike I’ve done since moving here. It’s quite literally 2300ft straight up and then 2300ft straight down. Surprisingly, going down to as the hardest part. At times the trail was hard to follow. Definitely went off trail a bunch both purposefully and unintentionally. All in all I loved this hike. It pushed me. Make sure to pack extra water, as this was the first time I ran out in a long time. Also, start early.

Grace Gretz reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
HikingGreat!Scramble
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 2, 2020
HikingGreat!Rocky

If you do this hike clockwise you won’t hit any water untill you get down to the river, 8.5 miles in, over steep and rocky terrain. We did it counterclockwise and so had the benefit of the river for cooling off and drinking for the first part of the trip. I am not an experienced hiker so I found the length and terrain to be really difficult. We were in over our heads for sure but we are glad we accomplished it. We hiked 4.5 miles day 1, 7 miles day 2, and 5.5 on day 3. Knowing what I know now I would probably like a 12 mile hike over 3 days so that I’m not too exhausted at the end of the day to enjoy the camping part. We had the capacity to carry 3 quarts of water per person and it was barely enough from our last fill up to the end of the hike. A gallon per person would have been much more comfortable. There is no water on the AT part of the trail. You can fill up at the black rock hut about 1 mile or so off the loop further north on the AT but at our pace that would have added at least 2 hours of hard labor to the hike so we decided to make what we had last till we got back to the car. We did this during July so it was hot and sweaty. The river was nice with a few shallow swimming holes, good to cool off in but not deep enough to jump in and swim around. There are several river crossings but at this time of year the water is low enough and we never even got our feet wet. We spent 2 nights hammock camping which was easier than tent camping as there seemed to be very few flat areas to pitch a tent. The trail is well signed and maintained.

Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 2, 2020
Hiking

completed this one today. the campground parking was closed so i parked at hogback overlook and hiked down tuscarora to the falls. started at 7 and didn’t pass anyone til i was about a mile past the falls. not gonna lie, the hike up beecher with the humidity today was brutal. (i just hiked 2 4k peaks in NH last week so i’m not out of shape). don’t underestimate this one. found a bunch of bear scat, and heard one on the matthews arm link back to tuscarora. it was just under 13miles by my watch. parking lot was jammed and parking all over the road when i returned.

Cameron Khan reviewed Shenandoah National Park Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
BackpackingGreat!

I mean, how could you go wrong with a trip like this? Cedar Run, Hawksbill, and Old Rag all in one trip? Sign me the heck up! I split this up over two days and it was honestly pretty taxing, so it might be better to make it a 3 day if you don't like long days. I hiked this 8/1-8/2/2020, which you may notice is a Saturday-Sunday. Bad idea! Cedar Run and Hawksbill both seemed more like Disneyland than national parks with the amount of day hikers, so be warned. This route goes through the most popular (i.e. best) areas of the park, so a weekday trip would be preferable if possible. Day 1: 14.1 miles, White Oak Canyon trailhead to campsite near Hughes River on Nicholson Hollow Trail (38.60203, -78.34835). Hike up Cedar Run with a heavy pack was quite taxing, and without much respite until the summit of Hawksbill. After that, though, the AT section is pretty smooth sailing, just a rather long 10 miles or so. Take note that the AT is detoured through Skyland Resort for about a mile. Little Stony Man was definitely an unexpected gem, waiting right on the trail. There is no from roughly half a mile before the end of Cedar Run until Skyland. I filled 2 liters but you could probably squeeze by with 1. Day 2: 13.6 miles, Hughes River campsite to White Oak Canyon trailhead. I started hiking at 6:15am so I could do Old Rag without a massive horde of college students. The initial climb up Indian Run trail was honestly tough, but maybe that was just because I was stiff. Corbin Hollow trail to Old Rag trailhead was uneventful. Old Rag itself was, well, by far the hardest part of this trip. Already tuckered out from 20 miles previously, the switchbacks definitely took a toll. And the rock scrambles were very technically difficult with a pack on. On a few occasions I had to take it off and pass it through the crevasses or hand it to the kind people in front of me in order to get through. All things told it took about an hour, all for the summit to be too windy for me to eat lunch! After veering off from the Saddle Trail down, it's all fire roads, plus a mile on a paved road back to White Oak Canyon trailhead. If you're considering doing this trip, by far the most limiting consideration will be Old Rag. If you've never done it before, it may be worth checking out on a day hike to gauge whether you think you'll be able to do it with a pack on. If not, the route can be easily changed by continuing on Old Rag Fire Road and going up the Saddle Trail, which has no rock scrambles, to the summit

Alex Tromp reviewed White Oak Canyon Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 1, 2020
Hiking

Trail is sneaky... it’s deceiving if you start from the top and work your way down as it’s much harder to get back up afterwards.... great waterfalls and scenery though.

Cait K reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 1, 2020
HikingGreat!
Rashad Usmani reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 1, 2020
Hiking

Great trail. So much fun!

View Rashad's Recording
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 1, 2020
Hiking

Last part is forest road, asphalt, and grass cutting through the 4H center.

View David's Recording
Traci Davis reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 31, 2020
Rock climbingRockyScramble

Great and very challenging hike. The rock scramble wasn’t described enough in all the reviews.It was rock climbing and lots of scrambling maybe close to 2 hours worth, not for anyone with compromised physical difficulties. The view is worth all the effort. We hope to do again but will bring more water for sure.

Just Lao reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 31, 2020
HikingGreat!Rocky

The hike is amongst the most difficult I have ever done if I can remember. The first few miles are normal mountain trail. You won’t even notice the elevation gain. But then you will encounter few switch back and can be dawning. But you will enjoy it. Skipping rocks and a Little Rock climbing is require but they are a bit easy to moderate nothing really hard that you can’t do. Please bring at least 2-3 liters of water and lots of snacks. But make sure your bag is not very heavy. Since it’s a long hike snacks along the way: walk and eat. You will feel hunger like I did if you are not fully prepared. I don’t recommend this to beginner. Also get into the trail as early as possible. You can watch the sunrise or sunset. I went early morning but I miss the sunrise when I got on top. Anyways it’s still good to be there early as the Parking lot gets packed. Give yourself 7 to 8 hours of hike the whole loop. Take your time and enjoy the view. Please bring a partner or a group with you.

Ian Voll reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 30, 2020
HikingGreat!RockyScramble

amazing views, difficult hike. some of the rock scrambles were challenging but worth the effort. I was spent by the time we hit the scrambles but I managed with a couple quick breathers. I would recommend more than 2 liters of water if it is over 80 degrees. we did it on a 90+ day and 2 liters was not enough.

Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 30, 2020
Hiking

Does anyone know what kind of water access is available through this section of the AT? I’m section hiking the entire park in September and am trying to figure out if there are any swimming accommodations, springs, creeks rivers etc. I’m going to hike the section with my dog and he’ll need to cool down every once in a while

Michel Bentley reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 29, 2020
HikingFeeRockyScramble

This is by far my favorite hike I’ve ever done! For those who have done this trail in the past make a note that the trailhead is slightly changed. The original parking lot is overflow now and the actual trail head starts about a mile down the road. Additionally there’s a pretty steep fee to enter of $30 per car. the hike itself starts with a pretty steep incline and switchbacks almost immediately. I was surprised by how intense it was. But once you get to the top rocky scramble it’s absolutely amazing. The views are pretty and the rocks are fun to climb on. I could spend hours at the summit. I can’t wait to do this hike again! Took us about 2 and half hours to get to the third peak and two hours going back down. Overall hike length was 7 miles. Also a fair warning. This trail is pretty heavily trafficked. There were parts especially at the trickier rock climbs where we had to wait in line as it was one person at a time. So definitely plan to go during a weekday when the traffic will be less

Amy Ford reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 29, 2020
Hiking

NEW Loop is 9.1 miles with 2,681 ft of elevation gain with the new parking lot and diverted trail. Always spectacular but I was shocked how many people were there on a weekday. I started at 7:30 am and lot was already half full. This took me 2 hours and 38 minutes to do, that’s with some super easy jogging on the fireroads towards the end.

Ian McGregor reviewed Old Rag Mountain Loop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 27, 2020
HikingGreat!RockyScramble

This loop has CHANGED!! Be aware. Hiked 27 July 2020. Change described first so people know. Overall take on the hike below. BE AWARE: The current (as of today) map on AllTrails is slightly different from what the trail is now. Looking at that map, there is a new parking lot at roughly 38°34'19.0"N 78°17'39.5"W. Google maps shows it under construction still. The original parking lot is now considered an overflow lot. More importantly, NPS is discouraging walking the fire road to get back to the parking lot (shorter now with the new one anyway). They have put up signage at the 9 mile mark (on this current AllTrails map) saying to take the Ridge trail back to meet up with where you started hiking and take it back to the parking lot. This add-on is all uphill and is an additional elevation gain of ~250 ft before finally coming back down, and overall adds 7/10 of a mile (according to the ranger) compared to the fire road. In total from the beginning of the ridge access trail to the parking lot it's 1.2 miles according to the post. It's a rude awakening for those of us who thought we were done with the ascents, and really tests the amount of water you brought. Technically the original fire road route is public access and it is perfectly legal to walk. However, residents have gotten annoyed with hikers. I leave the decision up to you but wanted people to be prepared because the current Old Rag trail map you get at the fee station does not mention this extra mileage or elevation gain. As this is so new, they are taking comments so please let the ranger know of general thoughts or suggestions and they will submit to higher-ups. Here is the map NPS is now using: https://www.nps.gov/shen/planyourvisit/upload/OldRag_RoadTrail.pdf GENERAL hike opinion As so many others have said, this is a great hike for pushing yourself and for the views. I was expecting the rock scramble to start earlier (not well-labeled on the NPS map), but it did not really get going until about 3000 ft elevation. It was challenging but definitely fun. Really great views at the top, and we definitely want to do this in the fall / for fall colors at some point! Coming down the fire road was nice compared to going down the rock scramble but that extra ridge add-on destroyed us at the end. Takeaway - this hike can be brutal if you're not prepared. We (2x) were mildly in shape and with the extra ridge trail at the end this took us a total of 6.5 hours, including ~ 30 min or so at the summit. We hiked on a Monday and started at 6.25 to avoid the heat. Very few cars at that time. Summit (3291 elevation) was reached in 3.5 hours, parking lot was reached in 2.5 hours. Total mileage and elevation (ups and downs, ridge add-on included [see above]) was 5286 ft over 9.6 miles. If we didn't have to take the ridge add-on it would have been closer to 4700 ft total elevation covered over roughly 8.9 miles.

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