Explore the most popular trail running trails near Fort Valley with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Went counter clockwise. Nice trail, well marked. Plenty of streams for my dog (wet summer). Will go back when leaves are off because the ridge walk will be incredible with amazing views. When leaves are on it’s just a nice alpine stroll of moderate intensity.

This is an interesting place. The history behind the "furnace" is kind of fascinating as is how the USFS gradually took over and restored the area. There are a number of trail heads here and there throughout the area. It was overcast with a light rain when we went but the trails were easily passable. We took the Botts Trail (white) which goes down by Passage Creek and it was easy to follow. You could tell from the branches and other debris that at times that creek must get flooded out. Good hike. If you have the chance, stop by and see the suspension bridge, restored buildings and the furnace.

4 months ago

Mountain Laurel was in full bloom on Memorial Day weekend in 2018, surrounding and papering the well groomed trail surface. We clocked the distance for a bit under 9-miles and passed through or over mountain spurs to the peak. There were no other hikers on the Kennedy part of the trail (about 7 miles) on a holiday weekend. The view at the peak was excellent when we were there.

Parking is good and the trail (actually a circuit) is well marked by orange, yellow (or tan?) and brown blazes. There is camping at several locations.

We will definitely do this trail again.

6 months ago

Nice hike. It is a well maintained trail. Fair amount of horse droppings along the lower trail. Even after reading the previous reviews, I missed the turn down from the upper trail. The turn is marked with white survey tape on a branch and the trail markers Change from orange to yellow. I recommend using the apps gps function for this transition. Enjoy the views.

Lots of rocks on the trail, lots of debris and very little pay off.

We opted to check out Elizabeth Furnace since we had a nice break in the weather. We’d heard good things about the park so figured we’d give it a go but ultimately didn’t care for the trail we did. There are some pretty cool features and it was great to be outside but the trail ends in an intersection of other trails and doesn’t offer much else. If we ever do this one again it will be to link up with the Buzzard Rocks trail.

Side note: as someone previously mentioned, the trailhead is hidden away. It is directly to the RIGHT of the covered table area. Follow the light blue blazes.

9 months ago

Cold day (17F) with a light layer of snow. Well kept trail with worthwhile view at the top. Nice way to end 2017.

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Beautiful views. The first two miles to the peak is a moderate hike, the last .5miles is moderate to difficult and very rocky.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

It was a nasty day but we could imagine it would have pretty views. It was extremely peaceful

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Completed this 9 mile loop clockwise in 4 hours, beginning from the lower parking lot. Both trails (yellow and orange) were marked clearly. As to the confusing spur trail below Kennedy Peak some have complained about, it had been blocked off with rocks and branches. One complaint I had was the constant presence of mosquitoes even in late September.

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Pretty easy stroll with a beautiful view at the top. Just a little tip- there's a switchback that is easy to miss and go the wrong way around the peak.

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Nice hike! Trail is well taken care of. Not too busy. Contrary to what the description says there are no views on this particular hike. We ended up going about a half a mile past few turn around making it a little over 5 miles long and we started to see views there.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

great trail

Monday, June 19, 2017

Camped out at Elizabeth Furnace family campground for one night after hiked up the ridge on this blue/orange blazed trail. It took some trying to locate the trailhead around the large picnic parking lot (drive cross the bridge). After the trailhead the rest of the trail is well marked, all the way to the ridge, just a little over 2 miles in distance 1000 ft in elevation gain. Once there, if you can, highly recommend taking a left turn onto Buzzard Rocks trail. That is where the good views are.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Easy hike until the last part headed to the tower. A lot of rocks but not that bad. Watch out for the horse poop on the entire trail. Worth the hike once you get to the tower..... enjoy the views

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Nice little hike. On the easy side of moderate; very few steep parts only a little rocky near the top. We only did the first 2.2m to the Massanutten trail intersection. No views of the valley from there. Must have to go further for views. The hardest part of this hike was finding the trailhead. If you're coming from the north don't stop at the Elizabeth Furnace campground, go to the picnic area. And the Pig Iron and Furnace part is interesting but go to the left to get to the trail.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Beautiful area

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Yikes-- the beginning of the hike was great, nice wide path and well shaded on a hot day. But there is a VERY important hard left switchback about 2 miles in - just when you're getting close to the tower that is not marked. So we pressed on straight following the trail (clearly others have done this because there is a clear trail for about 1/4 mile). Our mistake was to not turn around and go back, but this turned into quite a treacherous and scary morning. After a hot 2 hour detour we made it back to the trail, with our dog and 6 month old. What was supposed to be an easy family hike turned into a nightmare. While I get we were at fault for not turning around, this and all future instances of this could be avoided by putting an arrow on a tree or a rock or a sign or SOMETHING to let people know to take a hard left. Maybe someday we'll come back to actually make it to the tower but definitely not anytime soon.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

This seems to b the same as Tuscarora trail starting at Elizabeth's Furnace trail entry. We used the app to find the trail from Elizabeth's furnace and walked about half of it the first time out. Beautiful streams, some rocky areas, peaceful. Could be fairly wet/muddy if you go after a rain.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

Strickler's knob which runs off Massanutten trail is a hidden gem found off a bushwhacked trail at the highest peak. This lookout point and rock scramble rivals Old Rag.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

It was a nice hike, beautiful scenery. Come prepared to walk over a lot of rocks though.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Nice quiet hike, not a lot of other people on the trail. Beautiful view from the top!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Great hike, it wasn't crowded which was nice. I saw a black bear on the second part of the hike as the trail began to climb the peak. It was above me on the hillside off the trail. I heard him first walking through woods, then I saw him looking down at me as I came around a bend. I clapped loudly whistled and kept on going walking away from him making much more noise as I went. Luckily the bear did not follow! The 360 view from the top was beautiful. On the way back I didn't have anymore bear encounters.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

did pretty much all of these trails during hunting season while it was nice and cold. the trails are abundant and well marked so I didn't have an issue finding my way around.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Great trail. Have done it many times with my father and solo. I have a house in Luray off Page Valley and it is a short drive to the parking area . Plan on sleeping on top of the tower this summer .

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Awesome little recreation area! Go there multiple times a year.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Kennedy Peak is a fun, ridge-top, day hike. We did it with our dogs and our active 6-year-old, and he had no problem although he was very tired by the end. We went on the second weekend in October, and the foliage was still mostly green. Would be fantastic in a few weeks. Since it's not on Skyline Drive, it is not crowded, and yet still offers wonderful views of the Shenandoah River and the mountains. The description is inaccurate--this hike is 5 miles, not 4. The first half of the hike is lower on the mountain, and follows a wide path through the woods. The second half is much rockier and the path winds its way around the mountain, connecting to Steven's trail and finally reaching a somewhat rickety fire tower at the top. People who want to cut the trip short can turn around when the path meets Steven's trail, as you get almost the same view at the top.

on Kennedy Peak Loop

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Great hike with a nice payoff. The peak includes an old fire tower with 360 vies of Luray, Shenandoah and points west.

This can be done as an easy out and back hike. Two miles out. I've done this numerous times as a follow up to moderate or longer hikes.

The trail can also be done in combination with the Stephen's Trail as a loop. After you follow the white blaze back down from the peak, continue straight and follow the Massanutten for about a mile or so. You'll reach trail markers for Stephen's Trail. Veer left and follow the yellow blaze. This portion is mostly down hill. This is a moderate, gradual decline. You'll reach the parking for the trail at the bottom. Closer to the entrance, veer left and you'll catch the orange blaze for the Massanutten back up to the US675 lot.

I did the loop this time and took a break at the fire tower for lunch. I actually did the loop clockwise.

There weren't too many folks on the trail. I passed a few trail runners on the way up Stephen's Trail. There were a few folks at the tower. But other than that, I had the trail to myself.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Did this as a loop trail with Strickler and Duncan Knob. Parked the car at Scotch Horn Gap and took the trail up to Strickler then followed the Massanutten Trail towards Duncan then back down to Chrisman Hollow. Pretty much had the trail to myself. When I got to Chrisman Hollow lots of trail runners where just ending their runs.

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