Explore the most popular Trail Running trails in Shenandoah National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
rocky
scramble
22 hours ago

This is a beautiful trail that is almost certainly the pearl of Shenandoah. As a result it is PACKED on the way up, so if that’s not your jam you may want to look elsewhere. If you don’t mind the company it actually makes for some great camaraderie once you get close to the top. The beginning is mostly switchbacks that eventually turns into a more rocky type scramble once you get a little closer to the top. BE AWARE of the arrows when making your way through the rocks, the trail is not always labeled well in this section and we got lost for nearly 20 minutes following others that were going the wrong way. Definitely do the loop because it is different scenery and the fire road is easier on the knees. Enjoy the stunning views at the top!

Beautiful hike along all of the waterfalls. We thought they ended, but as we kept walking we realized there were more! There were some steep parts along the gorge, but overall the hike was easy-moderate. Would recommend if you have time and don't see waterfalls often!

Beautiful view at the top, but pretty busy trail! On the way up a doe approached us within 7 yards away... easy hike

lovely short hike! Awesome rock to sit at at the end to look out over the valley. Would do again!

BEST hike in the park for sure! We got an early start, and had to walk a while to get to the trail head, but once we started we were in the woods until the ridge. It was uphill, but the switchbacks made it feel more moderate than it actually was. The entire ridge up to the summit (1.5 miles maybe??) was all a rock scramble which was SO MUCH FUN! It was challenging for sure, but the scramble was so interesting I was very distracted. Not suitable for everyone, but if you're somewhat active you should be okay!

Moderate trail, and probably one of the best in the area. Take food and plan according to get back down before dark. Views are of the whole Shenandoah valley.

This trail was tough! I'm in decent shape but the climb up was hard for me. I had to take a couple breaks. The Cedar Run trail part was difficult but once we got to the climb up to Hawksbill, it felt even harder. I took a water break on some rocks on my way up, and a young bear climbed up onto the rock next to me. He looked at me to investigate for a minute and walked away. The view from Hawksbill is great though! The entire trail is full of interesting rock formations. We followed the AT for a bit, and that was a nice, easy hike. Whiteoak Falls was nice, too. There were several spots where you could take a dip in the water. The last few miles down were fairly steep, but not difficult. Including walking around at the Hawksbill summit a little, my GPS said we went over 13 miles. Bring plenty of water and/or a lifestraw. My hiking partner brought 4 liters of water and ran out (it was pretty hot though). I brought almost 4 liters and ended up giving him some of mine. But the Whiteoak Falls section has plenty of opportunities to refill and filter your water or use a lifestraw. It was strenuous, but I enjoyed this one!

Fun! Saw two bears. Don’t start going up the fire road. That is what you come down on.

my first hike! was challenging and super worthwhile. i enjoyed the rock scramble especially.

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 days ago

Great views, and definitely a workout! Lots of hikers joking at the scramble about the “how hard can it be?” - thought they had when reading the reviews. More challenging than we thought, but super rewarding, and everyone finished. Due to active bears in the area, we had to listen to a ranger talk before getting on the trail. We didn’t see any bears on our morning hike.

Love this trail. Did it in a light rain and had no issues. If you like spooky things there is a cool out of the way graveyard on the FR portion of the trail.

I wish I had headed left instead of right to begin the hike! I didn’t have a signal and I had only discovered this trail while I was driving on Skyline Drive. I figured the trail would be directly off the parking lot. Unfortunately, I hiked on the Appalachian Trail, which in this location is pretty flat and unrewarding.

hiking
over grown
3 days ago

Nice views, cool farmhouse, overgrown in several areas.

Daughter and I camped about mid way. Great hike!

hiking
scramble
4 days ago

hiking
scramble
4 days ago

Amazing trail! The rock scramble was a ton of fun! The descent was a bit long and monotonous, but well worth it for the ascent and the views

hiking
rocky
scramble
4 days ago

Completed in 5.75 hours. I am not an avid hiker or athletic, boyfriend works out 2-3 times per day and helped push me through. Definitely harder in the first two hours than what I was expecting but I did read a lot of reviews that warned for overall difficulty. First two was rocky trail with switchbacks up to the rock scramble. A few beautiful false summits along the way. Next approx hour was boulder scramble which was super fun. Takes your mind off of anything else but hand and foot placement. The view was absolutely incredible. Only stayed for a short time because of a storm blowing in. An hour or a little less down rocky trail before you hit the fire road. I’d say the sign lies about 2.5 miles and it’s closer to 3.5 but that’s just by my pace guess - it was miserable my boring. Overall an amazing hike - didn’t run into many people or get slowed down. Definitely doing this one again.

hiking
scramble
4 days ago

This hike is no joke. Very difficult and totally worth it! If you are not in good physical shape do not attempt this hike. The rock scramble has sections that we need to be able to lift yourself up. Make sure you wear good grippy shoes so you do not lose your footing.

hiking
over grown
rocky
4 days ago

The trail itself is definitely full of rocks and overgrown but it was still a really nice hike! As long as you spray some bug spray on you won't have any issues. We took our 70lb dog with and he loved it, only found 2 ticks on him after the hike was over. Really clear markings on the trail so you know you are still going the right way and overall a good trail! Go early in the day to avoid the heat in the summer. We got there around 8am and it was perfect weather for the hike.

I've done my share of tough hikes, but this one is easily one the hardest I've ever done. It's challenging physically and mentally in a way that a heavily trafficked trail in a busy national park seldom is. Going up is taxing, so by the time you get to the rock scrambling you are tired just as it's getting to be where you need to be sharpest. I wouldn't say any of the scrambling is dangerous, but being tired makes it all the more hard. Getting to the top feels like a genuine accomplishment which is always a good thing for a hike. The hike down the mountain is anticlimactic as you might imagine, but can't anything from the ascent. I went in the height of summer, I bet it's a lot more pleasant in October!

hiking
rocky
scramble
5 days ago

This is definitely the most rewarding hike I’ve ever completed. The views were unbelievable, however it is extremely challenging. There are many parts of this trail that will really test you-jumping and climbing rocks with no room for error if you are to fall. At the end of the hike, I could not believe how sick I felt but also how happy I was that I was able to finish it. So all and all, amazing experience.

That was fun! Nice incline to start. Shade the whole way. Too busy today though at the top

This was a great time. We modified it a bit and started from the visitor center and actually passed the campground and stayed on the AT until the split for Lewis Falls. Those falls were a little less climatic then the others, but a high view. The Lewis falls trail requires some scrambling and we saw some folks that were in deeper then their skills. This falls trails are rated moderate, but closer to hard. All in all a nice workout with great things to see. I recommend counterclockwise from the Big Meadows waypoint and return. You can cut the AT back to big meadows and skip the Lewis Falls trail and it will help you avoid cutting through the campground. We will do this again. About 6hr and 10 miles with our frolicking.

We did this hike up and back in less than 1.5 hours not including time spent on the summit. It was worth every step as the summit is beautiful. The trail is wide and pretty easy to navigate. The last .7 miles is pretty much straight up. Did this hike with our 11 and 9 year old children. Do this while visiting the park!

hiking
bugs
rocky
5 days ago

Decent hike with nice views and the swimming hole is worth your time. It’s clean, beautiful, and great on a hot day like today. Very rocky, as others have mentioned. I tried to run/jog portions of the trail and had to be very careful because the rocks are like running on spikes in some areas. If you make a right to enter the trail, you see everything cool at the beginning, so the second half of the trail is pretty boring (imo). Definitely bring a snack and a good amount of water. There were lots of bees, wasps, flies, gnats, and lots of other buzzing creatures out today (normal for summer). Also take note- bears are very active in the summer months....They have signs posted for what to do if you encounter one, just FYI.

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