View Full Version : interesting side trails in Shendandoah?

05-15-2011, 11:04
Several posters in the Shenandoah Experience thread say that the best part of the park is the side trails. Would anyone care to make recommendations? I'll be sectioning through the park soon, and would be interested in relatively short side trips (say 4 miles there and back) that would take me to waterfalls, exceptional views, and so on.

05-15-2011, 12:01
All the trails that lead to those blackberry smoothies.

05-15-2011, 12:21
Rose River trail around the Big Meadows lodge area. Cascades, falls, very cool rock face to lay on and nap the afternoon away. Easy grades, not as many tourons as Dark Hollow falls. Quiet walk along forrest road at the end if you do the loop CW

05-15-2011, 12:25
Rose River trail? That's exactly what I'm after. Thanks, chiefiepoo.

05-15-2011, 12:26
good trail for conditioning is the Leading Ridge Trail

05-15-2011, 12:53
There are three waterfalls pretty close together- Jones falls and upper and lower Doyle river falls.Jones run trail to Doyle river trail in the area between Blackrock and Loft mt in the southern section.You can blue blaze, or out and back if intend to go by every white blaze.

05-15-2011, 13:01
Hawksbill Summit -( 45.6 mile marker ) is an easy 0.6 mile hike up a fire road to an awesome near 360* view at 4,050 ft.

Bearfence Mountain -(56.4 mile marker) actually can be done as a circuit with the AT . Connect this trail on the front end heading Nobo and summit the peak in less than 0.3 .

WhiteOak Canyon - (45.6 mile marker) is accessed via the AT . A moderately difficult out and back hike down into the canyon past numerous waterfalls.

Ol Mole
05-15-2011, 13:26
The trail down to Camp Hoover and the Rapidan River is a nice area. Up near the Skyline Drive it begins going through old hemlock forest area.

Happy trails,

Joey C
05-15-2011, 13:59
Check out www.localhikes.com (http://www.localhikes.com) Lots of SNP side trails listed.

Country Roads
05-15-2011, 15:32
If you want to experience a part of the "original" section (pre-1995, I think), take the Moormans River fire trail down to the Moormans River. This is a very nice section. My hiking partners and I did this on our last section hike, since we really did not want to carry water for 13 miles. We were not disappointed (except for the trash near the parking area at the bottom :()
Plenty of water and nice streamside walk. And, since this was part of the original AT route, we did not consider it cheating (although we do plan to snag the section between jarman gap and blackrock gap on a future visit). I like Shenandoah! I shall return!

05-15-2011, 15:38
Check out the Park's web site on trails to falls:

Pick up a cheap guide called "Hikes to Waterfalls" about $2. I still use mine. Available in the park or you can order.

05-17-2011, 12:45
After a week of deluge in Connecticut, I'm sure I'll feel right at home with all those waterfalls. Heading out soon, and thanks for the great advice.

Daydream Believer
05-19-2011, 07:57
Miller's Head (I think that's what it's called) is a fairly short trail right from Skyland area that goes to a lovely overlook where it would be tempting to sleep overnight..probably not legal but I'm sure folks do it. I also liked the trail to Doyle River/Jones Run Trail. Hawksbill is well worth the short climb up the Salamander Trail from the AT to see. Mary's Rock is also a very short detour off the AT and gives a great view/rest spot.

My husband and I have day hiked all over SNP. We loved the circuit hike around Devil's Staircase also. There is an old Cemetery to visit also. That would be a pretty big detour though but you get a real sense for the old settlements. Rapidan Camp is worth the hike also to see where Pres. Hoover and his wife stayed. Often there are guides that will take you around and tell you about the camp.

Oh, one more...Lewis Falls trail off of the AT not far before you get to Big Meadow is also worth the detour.

sir limpsalot
05-21-2011, 07:39
Cedar run falls- has a waterslide! search out the name on youtube and see the videos of people having a blast! Prob. about 2 mi off AT

sir limpsalot
05-21-2011, 07:42
http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/files/2/1/6/4/3/789_thumb.jpg (http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showimage.php?i=39217&catid=member&orderby=dateline&direction=DESC&imageuser=21643&cutoffdate=-1)
http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/files/2/1/6/4/3/790_thumb.jpg (http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showimage.php?i=39218&catid=member&orderby=dateline&direction=DESC&imageuser=21643&cutoffdate=-1)..........fun stuff! (cedar run falls, snp)

05-21-2011, 17:14
Piney Branch Creek trail is awesome. I hiked it way back in June 1977, beautiful scenery, waterfalls, wildlife....and was chased out of our campsite on 2 consecutive nights by black bears looking for food.