Explore the best trails in Virginia with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
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Lovely easy hike. There were no directional signs or trail markers from the parking lot, but the trail is accessed by going through the gate at the top of the parking lot. You'll walk that road a little uphill and find the trail where the road ends. The parking lot was full, but the trail wasn't crowded at all. No leaves on the trees yet, so we could see the river easily, but I suspect once the trees are full, you won't see it easily. There are a couple of river crossings, (rocks slippery when wet!!) so be sure to bring shoes that can handle an accidental dip!
Arguably the best hike in Virginia. Great winding trail through the forest/side of the mountain, very suddenly turns into a challenging rock scramble till you hit the summit. Unbeatable panoramic views once you get there. Very windy as you get closer to the top. Not for the faint of heart, definitely requires commitment. Truly rewarding hike all in all.
Typical spring mountain weather: Snow, sleet, rain, hail, lightning, all in the same day. Beautiful views, several waterfalls, and plenty of water sources. The trail is well marked and clear. There are plenty of legal spots to camp, although we saw a few people camping in terrible places.
Went up there again last weekend and there was about 3 inches of snow that fell overnight. The trail part wasn't too bad with the snow but it exerted a lot of energy trying to stabilize each step moving up and both down the mountain. The truly horrifying part was the rock scramble with a great mixture of snow and ice covering nearly every challenging part. It amplified the difficultly tremendously and I wouldn't suggest trying this under these conditions unless you are prepared to take extra time. Some parts the snow help gain some grip, but mostly it made areas normally not too challenging extremely dangerous. We got to trail at about 730am and there were only 4 other cars in the parking lot. But the time we got back around 1:30 the parking lot was completely full. That's a Saturday on Old Rag i suppose. Prepare for it to get even worse come full spring and summer. We also went up the trail that gets to the scramble by about mile 3 and then after the summit it's a 5.2 mile bike back to the car. Overall a fun experience for me, but challenging for a first timer that was with me. I highly suggest staying away from this under snowy conditions especially if you're with someone trying this for their first time. Scenery though was amazing and even with the snow we were hot with just a hoodie and jacket.