Flat Top Mountain Trail

HARD 49 reviews
#13 of 46 trails in

Flat Top Mountain Trail is a 4.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Buchanan, Virginia that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

4.8 miles
1689 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly



nature trips




wild flowers

Flat Top Mountain is one of three mountains making up the Peaks of Otter in Jefferson National Forest. It is the tallest of the three, topping out at 4,001 feet.

6 months ago

Great hike, not too busy, when you get to the top there's a fork with no sign, if you go to the right there's one small outcrop of rocks with a beautiful view & if you keep going on that trail back down you end up at the Peaks of Otter Lodge. If you go to the left at that fork you come to at the top there's a nice flat rock outcrop with a beautiful view that's better for relaxing/snacking! Rocks are slippery when wet!

6 months ago

Great hike, beautiful views and well maintained. Just be careful going down - the trail is mostly loose gravel so it's kinda like hiking on ball bearings

6 months ago

Great hike, pictures on Instagram:w.a.b.flicks

7 months ago

This trail is really not that difficult. Neighboring Sharp Top trail is more strenuous.

7 months ago

I've done this hike about four times now and the view is always incredible. The hike can get pretty tiresome since most of it is uphill, but the view is worth it. I'd say it takes about 2-4 hours. When you get to the top you do have to climb some rocks for a good view.

8 months ago

Good view at the top. The trail was a little over grown.

8 months ago

Great hike. Not as many people on trail. Limited view at the summit. But there are a couple of rocks at the summit to climb on for a view.

11 months ago

Still one of my favorite hikes! Great views with moderate traffic.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

If you do the get directions option, it takes you to Peaks of Otter lodge, which is not the exact start of the trail, but it's close. I uploaded a picture to help.

The trail is easy to follow and not marked until you reach the summit. We went in mid February so there were no leaves, but the views were good, and the trail was not hard. No crazy incline, about 1.8-2.0 miles to the summit. There were some good places to have fun and climb rocks.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Trail from Otters of Peak lodge was hard, mostly vertical elevation, but worth the view at the summit.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Did not use listed trail. off parkway there is a pull off with signs for trail it connects to listed trail great view at top well worth the hike

Saturday, May 28, 2016


Friday, May 06, 2016

I really enjoyed the hike to the top but unfortunately due to the weather it was too foggy to see the views at the top! Definitely plan to go back on a sunny day to get the full effect!

Sunday, May 01, 2016

We ended up hiking in the rain since the weather lied so we had a view of solid fog at the top, which stunk but the hike was great (other than the rain). The trail is easy to follow, well kept, and very navigable. It's a steady incline with switchbacks but totally doable for low fitness levels. I myself work out, but am still in the process of loosing weight so I stopped many times on the way up to catch my breath from the climb. But it's worth it to now I conquered this and neighboring Sharp Top!

Monday, April 25, 2016

The trail was great! It took us about two hours to get to the top and there was almost no one else on the path!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Beautiful views. Interesting rock formations at the peak, but none so interesting as on neighboring Sharp Top. I believe I hiked from the other end, the trail starting from the north, and not the highlighted trail associated with this waypoint.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Easy at first, then becomes more challenging the last half mile. Definitely worth it

Saturday, November 21, 2015

very nice.


Friday, September 04, 2015

I grew up hiking all over these mountains. There is not a hollow, creek or ridge where I have not been on Sharp Top, Flat Top or Apple Orchard and many surrounding these. My favorite time to go is now, anytime of the year! I like the scenery, the smells, and the sounds. And I love to go there with others. I have hiked there in the rain, and when I come up on deer bedded down they look at me as if to say "You arn't going to make me get up are you? I've hiked it and heard the snow hissing through the trees. The deep silence of the cold is so loud! The mystery of what I may see or hear next is exhilarating.
I learned to track both animals and men there. Suprisingly, the trail that a man leaves as he walks through only one time, can last for weeks, unless he or she is learned in the skill of tracking. So please, be very careful not to destroy by carelessly walking through.

Saturday, July 04, 2015

A good workout like nearby sharp top but the view at the top isn't as impressive.

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