In fact, this may just be my favorite hike in the entire park, which is absolutely one of the greatest American national parks for waterfall hunting . Furthermore, you can discover lesser-visited yet equally scenic sights at places like Jones Run and Furnace Mountain where cataracts roar among old-growth trees spared by the logger’s axe and lonely lookouts beg to be visited. #1 - Hemlock Hollow, Bluebell and Overlook Trail Loop, #3 - River Trail Easy and Culler's Trail Double Track Loop. It is 26.1 miles north of Rockfish Gap entrance station. May-June are peak months for northbound thru hikers on the Appalachian Trail, while September is the peak month for southbound hikers. 205 and I-64. Gary Utz reviewed Big Oak Trail and Tulip Poplar Trail Loop … The trails both parallel the banks of the river as it snakes through the Shenandoah Valley and through the rolling hills, which provides great views of the river and surrounding mountains. Appalachian Trail, Hiking, Outdoors, Shenandoah Valley, Travel Ideas / June 7, 2020 by Johnny Molloy / 26 Comments Updated: Nov 25, 2020. Catch a great view of the Shenandoah Valley on your way back, then enjoy more attractive ridgeline woodland. Unfortunately inside-the-park no campgrounds have water and electricity. Horseback Riding. Overall though, the Shenandoah River State Park was … These scenic trails highlight the dramatic changes in elevation that create the plentiful waterfalls in this region to wow you. It takes some Best walking trails in Shenandoah River State Park, Virginia 202 Reviews Explore the most popular walking trails in Shenandoah River State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you. A large riverside picnic area with shelters, trails, river access, a scenic overlook and a car-top boat launch make this a … One of the most spectacular experiences in Shenandoah National Park is standing in the thigh-high pool at the base of the South River Falls, gazing at its precipice 83 feet above, and being bathed in its cooling mist. This is the most popular hiking trail in the park and it is always recommended by park staff. This is a short 1.4-mile return hike that is suitable for almost everyone and one of the best hikes in Shenandoah National Park for families. Shenandoah River State Park is located in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley. The 1,619-acre state park wows with more than 25 miles of wooded trails. Thanks, Johnny Molloy. Hawksbill Mountain is the park’s highest peak at … But we had to try. Stop by Dundo Picnic Area, once the site of a Civilian Conservation Corps Camp. Leave Dickey Ridge Visitor Center to first visit the old Fox Farm. Your email address will not be published. We think that this is one of the best easy hikes in Shenandoah National Park for kids ages 6 and up. Once you finish soaking in the outstanding views of Blackrock Summit with other hikers, enter one of the park’s more remote areas on the Trayfoot Mountain Trail then the Furnace Mountain Trail, availing maximum solitude. This vertical variation is one of the reasons for the incredible diversity of life found within its boundaries. Whiteoak Canyon Trail, Shenandoah National Park McGaheysville This is my pick for the best hike in Virginia. There is nothing quite like these falls, and two of the best options for hiking it include the North River Trail, a Duration: 1–5 Hours. Hiking Time: Elev. From Thornton Gap entrance, take Skyline Drive south for 5.2 miles to the Pinnacles Picnic Area entrance. Erin Shenandoah Valley I visited Shenandoah River State Park near Front Royal last Saturday and I’m already eager to go back to hike more scenic and forested trails. S henandoah River State Park is situated on the South Fork of the Shenandoah River with more than 1,600 acres along 5.2 miles of shoreline. A large riverside picnic area, picnic shelters, trails, river access and a car-top boat launch make this a popular destination for families, anglers and canoeists. Along the way you will enter a “sky island” of Canadian-type spruce-fir forest. Hiking Central. Shenandoah River State Park boasts a trail system of nearly 30 miles! Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail. Pick up the Appalachian Trail on your right as you top out in the picnic area, before the road starts looping around. Thanks for your blog! Shenandoah River State Park is located off rout 340, 15 miles north of Luray and 8 miles south of Front Royal. Excellent trail marking. Reach the confluence of Laurel Prong and Mill Creek, where Rapidan Camp lies in a lovely wooded setting. There are short nature trails here, too. It helps a lot. Stop by Furnace Spring, once was used in a copper mining operation, before completing this highlight-laden loop, located near Skyland. I suggest going to the park website and see if they have park-approved guides, http://www.nps.gov/shen . Walk the Passamaquoddy Trail, named for early park proponent George Pollock. Virginia State Parks are well known for their amenities and great trails, and the Shenandoah River Raymond R. "Andy" Guest Jr. State Park is no exception. Strike up the north slope of Old Rag, emerging onto a massive granite slab, revealing far fetched panoramas. As folks flock to Skyline Drive to see the fall leaves, they rarely venture down the mountain to what I think is one of the most beautiful parks in Virginia. There are a couple of access points, but they didn’t really do it for us. Dark Hollow Falls. These home sites reveal another era of Shenandoah, rich in cultural history that once found settlers squeezed into the narrow valleys in the shadow of the Blue Ridge. overlooks the Shenandoah river and the valley. Shenandoah River State Park is nearly pristine, just like the other state parks we've seen. The granite-topped peak delivers incredible views and a rock scramble along the way. The Trailhead: From the intersection of US 211 and US 522 in Sperryville, take US 522 south for .8 mile to VA 231. State Park Fee is $3 or 4$. Shenandoah is not only known for its breathtaking Skyline Drive but also its beautiful, flowing, high waterfalls. SHENANDOAH RIVER STATE PARK Approximate Distance / Time from Alexandria: 69 miles: 80 miles; 1 hour, 30 minutes (Pictured above.) Be prepared for crowds when the weather is nice and views from the uppermost outcrops. When it rains at a Virginia State Park. Views are expansive and frequent. Seven Bends State Park provides public access to the North Fork of the Shenandoah River and features two hand-carry boat launches, picnic areas, one single family-sized picnic shelter, vault restrooms, and 8 miles of hiking trails. Locations are given by mile markers along Skyline Drive. 33 to the Rockfish Gap Entrance Station off U.S. Rt. The Trailhead: From the town of Madison, on US 29 north of Charlottesville and south of Culpepper, drive north on VA 231 for 5 miles to VA 670. Rich vegetation and large wild land helps support an impressive array of mammals – over 50 species – including the black bear. do you know any organized tours that have hikes to the park? Outcrops below the summit are just warm-ups for the nearly 360-degree view atop Hawksbill. Park "Shenandoah River State Park", category "Hikingidpark" results in following blogs. Kinda steep winding road going in but nothing extreme. Table Rock Trail, Table Rock State Park, Pickens Distance: 6.4 Miles, Difficulty: Hard “You’ll boast quads of steel after this eight-mile workout in Table Rock State Park, but most agree it’s one of the best hikes in South Carolina. This is an excellent park for day hikes, you can probably do them on your own. Shenandoah River State Park has so much to offer. This state park is about 15 minutes to Front Royal making grocery shopping easy. Why You Must Hike This Hike: View Big Rock Falls on the way to Rapidan Camp, the preserved presidential retreat of Herbert Hoover. And yes, there are hikes you must do here. Previous trail description listed just Bear Bottom Loop. Elevations vary from 4,050 feet atop Hawksbill down to less than 550 feet near Front Royal. This is a great article. Elsewhere, your footsteps can lead past what once were pioneer farms, places like Dickey Ridge. I’ve never been to virginia and wanted to try a multiday hike in Shenandoah National Park/in its area, any suggestions? Why You Must Hike This Hike: Capture up close Shenandoah’s scintillating geology — huge outcrops rising above the forest and open talus slopes where rocks by the thousands carpet the mountainsides. Why You Must Hike This Hike: Stand atop cliffs rising 3,000 feet above Shenandoah Valley, soaking in views from breezy Stony Man. A man-made observation platform showing the cardinal points enhance this highest of Virginia national park panoramas. Mountain Biking Shenandoah River State Park Add a review #194 of 284 mountain bike trails in Virginia #9,919 in the world. And did I mention it has over 500 miles of trails to explore? Apr 5, 2020 - Planning which Shenandoah National Park hikes to do on your visit? The hiking is easy from here out. A … In spring and early summer, the Doyles River – Jones Run Loop is one of the absolute best day hikes in Shenandoah National Park. Hi John! I’m assuming your book is on Amazon? Why You Must Hike This Hike: Conquer Shenandoah’s highest point on this easy hike. Before you set out into the park, make sure to review the rules and regulations and safety tips for traveling in Shenandoah's backcountry. Hikes with Views State Park Hikes Spring Bluebells at Shenandoah River State Park April 16, 2020 December 27, 2020 Erin Kid-Friendly , Shenandoah River State Park , Shenandoah Valley Your climb is rewarded by a stop at Jones Run Falls. Shenandoah National Park is the scenic mountain haven of the Mid-Atlantic, the glittering jewel in the crown of the Virginia Appalachians. Shenandoah River State Park is a picturesque mountain park located just outside of Bentonville, Virginia. Camping available. It does get cold and windy up at the top, and parents will need to keep a close eye on young children as there is quite a drop-off. Thanks. Gain: Parking: 3.5 hours plus a half hour for lunch 650 ft Park at the Horse Barn Area Virginia State Parks are well know n for their amenities and great trails, and the Shenandoah River Raymond R. "Andy" Guest Jr. State Park is no exception. New Market Battlefield State Historical Park, 10 Must Do Hikes in Shenandoah National Park, WanderLove: A Road Trip From Norfolk to Virginia’s Eastern Shore, Virginia’s Charming Main Streets That Are Decked Out for the Holidays, 8 Exclusive Luxury Retreats For a Pampered Virginia Getaway, 22 Virginia Small Towns You’re Going to LOVE, WanderLove: A Road Trip From Fredericksburg To Virginia’s Northern Neck, 20 Virginia Summits with 360 Degree Views, WanderLove: A Road Trip Along Virginia’s Blue Ridge Parkway, 10 Gorgeous Glamping Destinations in Virginia for a Luxury Outdoor Experience, Hiking with Kids: 10 Trails for Beginners in Virginia, 13 Mountain Cabin Rentals for Your Summer Vacation. Turn right on VA 643 and follow it for less than a mile to VA 600. Situated in the heart of Shenandoah Valley, northern Virginia’s Shenandoah River State Park is an oft-forgotten destination in a heavily-trafficked area. Your email address will not be published. Virginia State Parks are well know for their amenities and great trails, and the Shenandoah River Raymond R. "Andy" Guest Jr. State Park is no exception. Parked at Culler’s Viewpoint and traveled Campground Trail, Culler’s, Red Tail Ridge, Tulip Poplar, Big Oak and back to Culler’s and Campground for a 7 mile loop. Hike to the summit of Stony Man Mountain, where you can capture the patchwork of Shenandoah Valley and superlative mountain montages. Walk to a massive rock outcrop with an extensive view, then stop at the Loft Mountain Campground store for ice cream as you complete the loop. The park is full of well-maintained trails great for hiking and mountain biking. Shenandoah is probably best known for its hiking and waterfalls, but there’s so much granite inside the park that it has become a hot spot for climbing, too. Shenandoah National Park’s comprehensive trail network allows hikers to craft adventures exploring all Shenandoah has to offer. Adding an additional 2.7 miles There is a network of trails here. Turn right on VA 231 and follow it 8 miles to VA 601, Peola Mills Road. Just as good as the National Park without the crowds. In addition, a wealth of attractions lies outside the park to enhance your Shenandoah National Park experience. Bryan Lowe reviewed Wildcat Ledge Trail It’s hard to keep track of all the falls at Whiteoak Canyon tumbling through a chasm of geological wonderment, a place where the rocky base of Shenandoah protrudes above the rich forest. From the Thornton Gap entrance, take Skyline Drive south for 15.2 miles to reach the parking area, on your right. Gently descend back to Loft Mountain Wayside. If a fear of heights if one is on a narrow trail near a straight drop off is an issue (!) This loop takes you to the summit of Hawksbill Mountain which is the largest peak in the park. Why You Must Hike This Hike: This hike visits three major cataracts while looping through two boulder-strewn canyons linked by the Appalachian Trail. Hike to the summit of Stony Man Mountain, where you can capture the patchwork of Shenandoah Valley and superlative mountain montages. However, with nearly 20 named hiking trails, it can be hard to zero in on one or two hikes. The North District of Shenandoah National Park spans from the Front Royal Entrance Station at the town of Front Royal off I-66 to the Thornton Gap Entrance Station at U.S. Rt. Use this guide to choose the best Shenandoah hikes no matter how long your park visit is! Join the AT northbound. Volunteers. Be careful on the rocky track then enjoy the solitude and scenes from Furnace Mountain. The trails include a beautiful overlook of the river, as well as a pleasant field walk. In addition to the meandering river frontage, the park offers scenic views of Massanutten Mountain to the west and Shenandoah National Park to the east. 6 Favorite Fall Camping Spots at Virginia State Parks By Shellie Anne Posted September 24, 2020 Locations are given by mile markers along Skyline Drive. Shenandoah River Loop (Shenandoah River State Park, VA) Posted on October 24, 2015 by Andrew Wojtanik Situated in the heart of Shenandoah Valley, northern Virginia’s Shenandoah River State Park is an oft-forgotten destination in a heavily-trafficked area. Hiking Mountains. Undertake the following 10 must-do hikes at Shenandoah and you will go away with a montage of experiences reflecting the true nature of Virginia’s largest and wildest national park. Just exercise a little caution and you’ll be fine. Enough hills to get the heart pumping but with easy, well maintained, smooth trails. Johnny Molloy, author of Top Trails: Shenandoah National Park, has been day hiking and backpacking at Shenandoah for over two decades, in addition to trekking destinations throughout the Old Dominion and beyond. Why You Must Hike This Hike: Explore six sequentially numbered falls ranging from 45 to 86 feet while ascending a rugged, rocky gorge recalling the West. While lacking the heights of nearby Shenandoah National Park or Massanutten Mountain, a tangle of hiking and biking routes crisscross the state park, exploring fields and bluffs adjacent to the Shenandoah River, the waterway… … The park opened in June 1999. And as more and more outdoorspeople are discovering, one of the best places to get out of the car and adventure in that scenery is Shenandoah River State Park (also known as Andy Guest State Park).. As many great outdoor spots are, it can be a bit easy to miss. This is super helpful; thanks! I am fine with stamina and strength and energy but found hiking in Zion on some of the trails to be quite a scary challenge…. The Frazier Discovery Trail leaves from the wayside near the entrance to Loft Mountain Campground. Interpretive Guides are on site during the warm season. Most hikes are accessible via Skyline Drive, though some are accessible from the park boundary. Cabins and a campground, the Shenandoah River that meanders through, fishing, picnic areas, geocaching, a great visitor center and multiple trails. The trail grades are generally moderate as you descend Browns Gap Fire Road, passing a Confederate grave to then follow Doyles River, crashing in a bouldery canyon with big falls and lesser cascades. The trailhead is in the back of the far parking area, which will be on your right. This is Shenandoah River State Park, one of the best-kept secrets in the area. The Trailhead: The Upper Hawksbill trailhead is on the west side of Skyline Drive at milepost 46.7. Location: Skyline Drive mile 50.7. All of the trails are as wide as double track but mostly smooth. You are not set up as easy to follow format as a new hike might like. Still more views await along the way to arguably the best vista in the entire park — Mary’s Rock with its 360 degree views. Hike to Fossil Beach at York River State Park in Williamsburg September 14, 2020 September 27, 2020 Erin Coastal Virginia There’s something special about coastal hikes, like those you’ll find at York River State Park. Why You Must Hike This Hike: The cool, historic visitor center at the trailhead, pioneer homesteads and cemetery, trailside interpretive information, and a view! Is the fall a good time to come, Thanks for your interest. I would first look in the vicinity of Luray. Hi Johnny! Virginia Economic Development Partnership Visit www.vedp.org. At the turn you will see a sign indicating this is the highest point on Skyline Drive. Virginia State Parks / flickr Built around the Shenandoah River, this park is … Clear water with Rocky bottom. 205 and I-64. The Trailhead: The hike starts at the Dickey Ridge Visitor Center, milepost 4.6 on Skyline Drive. Shenandoah is not only known for its breathtaking Skyline Drive but also its beautiful, flowing, high waterfalls. Great place for running your dog! With various levels of difficulty, there are trails ranging from an easy stroll along the river to a heart-pumping climb up the bluff to a wonderful vista of the river . Walk around, check out the three buildings and interpretive information. Park here. From the Front Royal park entrance, head south on Skyline Drive for 4.6 miles the Dickey Ridge Visitor Center. Kyle, I suggest driving down Skyline Drive, getting to Charlottesville, then taking the next day to hike the Browns Gap waterfall loop or Blackrock via Furnace Mountain the next day. We are continually grateful for the parks' trash-free policy, which specifies that visitors take their trash out with them. Most hikes are accessible via Skyline Drive, though some are accessible from the park boundary. Will they be a trickle or flowing? Beautiful. Shenandoah River State Park: Wonderful Camping and hiking adventure - See 164 traveler reviews, 143 candid photos, and great deals for Bentonville, VA, at Tripadvisor. This park favorite starts at a high elevation and gets to the top of things in Shenandoah. Why You Must Hike This Hike: Old Rag is Shenandoah National Park’s contribution to the great mountains of America. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. 2. The camp has much to see; you can even embark on a self-guided tour. Take the Little Stony Man Trail to Little Stony Man, where more overlooks await. If you love hiking (all levels) great facilities and not a lot of crowds, spend at least one (or two days) hiking here. Pass through a beautiful river walk with easygoing wide paths throughout much of the hike. Why You Must Hike This Hike: This ideal family hike or afternoon stroll starts at the Loft Mountain Wayside. Shenandoah River State Park is nestled between Shenandoah National Park to the east and Massanutten Mountain to the west. Difficulty Level: Moderate; Location: Bentonville, VA; Distance: 6.5 miles; This hike provides some of the best scenic variety of any trail in the area. General Information This park is on the South Fork of the Shenandoah River and has more than 1,600 acres along 5.2 miles of shoreline. This place is engaging, so give it at least an hour. Like a backbone extending down the Blue Ridge, the AT runs the length of the park and attracts large numbers of day hikers and weekend overnighters, in addition to the annual thru-hiker migration. Turn left on VA 600 and follow it for 3.7 miles to Berry Hollow. Come along Mill Prong and see 15-foot Big Rock Falls, with its deep beckoning pool. Shenandoah’s Best Waterfall Hikes Book your reservation online today or call 877-847-1919. Take the Mill Prong Trail into the cool Rapidan River valley. 33 to the Rockfish Gap Entrance Station off U.S. Rt. Shenandoah River State Park. Hiking. The park opened in June 1999. Five of Shenandoah National Park’s best day hikes offering either sweeping views or intimate waterfalls—and in one case, both. Shenandoah National Park: Moormans River This 4.2-mile out-and-back hike is a local's favorite, climbing gently from the flood-torn banks of the Moormans River to one of the most impressive waterfalls in the park. Great Falls Park’s terrain, combined with one-of-a-kind views, makes it one of the best hikes in Virginia to take with kids. I have a book entitled Top Trails: Shenandoah National Park that would help. 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