Lewis Spring Falls Trail

HARD 133 reviews
#21 of 148 trails in

Lewis Spring Falls Trail is a 2.8 mile loop trail located near Stanley, Virginia that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and walking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
816 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

hiking

walking

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Directions from Front Royal, VA: Skyline Drive travels the entire length of Shenandoah National Park. Mile markers are placed along the right-hand side of the road heading south. They are numbered from north to south beginning at the northern terminus in Front Royal, Virginia. Facilities, trails and park features use the mile markers as points of reference. Park at milepost 51.2 in the Big Meadows area. Look for the amphitheater where below, you will find a trail post for Lewis Spring Falls.

hiking
21 days ago

We actually did this trail unintentionally! My husband and I had our five boys with us (aged 12-3.5), and also my mother. We were planning to just do the shorter out and back trails that are rated “easy,” but decided to keep going. Because we weren’t planning to do the whole loop I hadn’t read to do it counterclockwise. We did it clockwise and honestly I think I prefer doing the rockiest parts going uphill. We are all novice hikers and only had on athletic shoes and had very little trouble. Took us about 3 hours and the youngest boys made it almost to the very end before we had to carry them some. It was a lot of fun with a nice cardio push going uphill at the end, and some really beautiful views and flowers.

1 month ago

Great trail with kids and dog. I would rate this closer to moderate than hard. Definitely do this counterclockwise like other reviewers have said! And definitely take the small detour down to the observation point. Much better views of the falls. Really nice starter trail for the family before trying longer ones. Just the perfect length.

hiking
1 month ago

Lewis Falls trail is a loop and we did the full loop, but if you don’t think you are up for a steep climb then head to the falls by starting out to the left from Black Rock and then return the same way. It will keep this trail at a moderate level for you because the steeper elevation climb is on the other half of the trail. We did the whole loop at went up the steepest part (not down...last time I trust a tip from some guy in the parking lot). There wasn’t anything magnificent to see on that steep side so if you decide to double back to make the trail easier you won’t be missing anything exciting. When you are at Lewis Falls you will see hikers at the upper falls to your right, but do yourself a favor and go left. There is a trail marker near the water. Cross over and there is a very short trail that will take you down to an observation point for the lower falls. It’s worth the few minutes it takes to see a different view of the falls.

hiking
1 month ago

I don't know if there's been a recent rockslide since the people who claimed this was only a "moderate" trail, but there were parts that didn't even look like a trail anymore when we went today. We also went counter clockwise and glad for that choice as the worst parts were definitely on the northern tract. Good cardio workout on the climb back up, wouldn't push it if you're not in somewhat good shape

1 month ago

Hiked Lewis Falls counterclockwise yesterday! Weather was amazing and the recent rains made the stream higher. The view of the falls was not that great but getting there and hiking back was a lot of fun.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked last weekend 7/21/18 and it was a good hike! We did it counter clock wise and I’m glad we didn’t have to go up the rocky trail. Lots of rocky paths, make sure to wear good shoes. We went and it was a little foggy at the beginning. It’s really a beautiful hike though!

hiking
2 months ago

Did this hike a few weeks ago in May during a heat wave. The trail was mostly shaded so it wasn’t horrible in the heat and humidity. This is a pretty steep trail but not horribly long. The view point is a little off the beaten path and was a little obstructed by trees but gorgeous nonetheless.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked 7/8/18, perfect weather, 65 degrees at the start. Only saw 4 groups on the way in. I also recommend hiking this loop counterclockwise. The AT portion is smooth and very nice. The Lewis Spring Trail is very rocky. The trail was mostly dry. Apparently not a popular spot, I’m guessing because there is no real place to get in the water .

hiking
2 months ago

Definitely more moderate than difficult, but beautiful trail with a waterfall about 1/2 way thru.
First trail at Shenandoah, excited to explore more in the future.

2 months ago

Beautiful hike, lots of rock-hopping. Wear shoes with good ankle support! I slipped and busted my knee and ankle on a loose rock.

hiking
2 months ago

We did this hike on a hot Monday morning in early July. We did the loop in the counterclockwise direction. The downhill portion is pretty steep and rocky. It goes through the woods. In the winter I would imagine you could get some decent views, but in the summer with the leaf coverage it was hard to see much.

At the bottom is the waterfall. Nice waterfall with a nice viewing area. It is good for looking at, not good if you are looking for a swimming hole.

The hike back up via the AT isn't too bad. It is all uphill but not too steep.

I would rank it as moderate and not hard. It took us 2 hours round trip which included about 20 minutes of viewing the falls.

3 months ago

I did this in late May as the closing end of a 15 mile backpacking day. It was beautiful and fun on the downhill but, gosh, that uphill kicked my butt! Of course, I was dog tired by the time I reached this trail. It would have been fine were I fresher at the time. Saw a bear.

hiking
3 months ago

This was a great 2 hour hike. I will say that it is moderate ...not really "difficult". There were some slippery spots but pretty easy going otherwise.

6 months ago

Rocks can get slippery, lots of underground springs that could keep parts of the trail wet. Beautiful views at lookout at the falls. You have to cross the river on rocks to get to the little stone overlook. This part was the hardest with dogs.

hiking
8 months ago

Great hike! Not as many overlooks as some trails in the valley, and I would consider it a moderate hike compared to some of the others as well.

8 months ago

Took us 1 & a half hours. It was moderately difficult. There were some steeper rocky areas and if no matter which way you go on it you will be going up a fairly steep climb at some point but if you are used to hiking it’s nothing bad. I saw a lot of people say it took them 3+ hours so I guess it depends on your pace.

11 months ago

Awesome view at the waterfall.

hiking
11 months ago

Started the trail at big meadows parking lot by the amphitheater. We started on the downward slope and ended with the uphill portion. Very rocky trail. A moderate level trail. Had some good views. Waterfall isn't the greatest but still nice to see. When you get to the waterfall sitting area there's another little path that takes you to a dead end and you can see the waterfall much better than the higher overlook spot. We stopped and looked at black mountain overlook and and definitely worth the 0.1 detour! Saw a black bear along the trail! Took us about 2.5 to 3 hours to finish the loop.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Rating a three just because all of the loose rocks make it so difficult to keep a steady pace! Plenty of beautiful views though, otherwise! Hiked afternoon, Friday 9.15.17 and the place was practically a ghost town which was awesome!!!

walking
Monday, September 11, 2017

Nice easy well marked trail.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Great hike, but as far as waterfalls go, a little under whelming.

hiking
Sunday, September 03, 2017

After attempting a truly hard hike in the White Mountains, i would say this trail is more on the moderate side -- it's got some steep parts to it and coming from Florida where it's mostly flat, it took a while for us to do, but it is still very doable.

Also, the deer in Shenandoah are not shy of people at all. Makes for some great photo opportunities!

hiking
Sunday, August 06, 2017

I did the loop in reverse and it was far a better hike! the backend of the loop has the most rocks and the deepest pitches so it was much easier to start with that first. Mostly wooded just before the waterfall then it opens up to a spectacular view!

camping
Saturday, August 05, 2017

Beautiful little trail, only about 3.3 miles, with great sights on the way down. There are tons of photo opportunities, as there are many rocky outcrops from which to view the valley below. Not strenuous - I'd say easy/moderate (qualifier: partner and I are in shape but are not athletes). The path is rocky going down, so it will be harder if you're unsteady (bring poles if you're prone to rolling your ankles or have bad knees).

hiking
Wednesday, August 02, 2017

NPS rates the Lewis Spring Falls loop, including a stretch of the AT, as moderate. If you're an active hiker and in amazing shape, that might be true. Otherwise, it's hard and a heck of a workout. Great views and the little glen above the waterfall is like a cool breath of fresh air. Watch for black bears. We met one along the AT.
Take a detour to Black Rock for an amazing view on the last mile and cut through the Big Meadows camp area. There's a tap room and a vending machine with water and Gatorade in the Lodge. You'll need it.

hiking
Thursday, July 20, 2017

We went on a very foggy day. I kept thinking it felt like we were walking through a magical forest due to the fog, and that without the fog the hike would have been really boring. Upon reflection I bet there were some nice views we missed. But it is not a hike I plan to repeat.

hiking
Monday, July 17, 2017

Awesome trail, minus the old timers warning me and my 6 year old daughter that it’s too treacherous on the way in.

It’s not, if you put your phone down and watch where you’re walking.

Great hike,

hiking
Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Steep hike on the way back up!!

Friday, June 23, 2017

Full disclosure: We hiked with a 5 yo and 8yo. They were both troopers and killed it. But it was a serious hike for my two girls. The 8yo was totally spent. The 5yo was tired but loved it. Frequent breaks and snacks were key. Also key was finding a good walking stick for them. The falls were not spectacular, but if you want to be a little adventurous you can climb a bit to the falls and see it up close. Overall, a decent trail.

hiking
Friday, June 16, 2017

Very muddy when I went and was expecting to get much closer to the falls, but enjoyable and beautiful none the less.

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