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“FANTASTIC HIKE” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Old Rag Mountain Hike

Old Rag Mountain Hike
Shenandoah National Park, VA
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Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Parks, Hiking Trails, State Parks, Caverns/ Caves, Mountains, National Parks, Trails, Forests
Attraction Details
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“FANTASTIC HIKE”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2013

This is not an easy hike but it is well worth it if you are in shape and enjoy scampering up rocks. Best to start in the early morning and take 3 water bottles per person. The trail down is longer and easier but it makes for a nearly 10 mile hike before you are back to your car. We saw 2 brown bears along with trillium, lady slippers and wonderful views!

Visited May 2013
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93 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Wallingford, Connecticut
Top Contributor
149 reviews 149 reviews
68 attraction reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
126 helpful votes 126 helpful votes
“Fun & challenging hike”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

The Old Rag circuit is about 8 miles. When you factor in the roundtrip walk from the parking area to the trailhead you can add another .8 miles each way for a total distance of 9.6 miles. Go clockwise up the mountain. First follow the blue-blazed Ridge Trail to the summit of Old Rag, then descend down the Saddle Trail (blue blazed) and finish on the Weakly Hollow Fire Road (yellow blazes) which brings you back to the road that leads back to the parking area. It is a steady climb up the Ridge Trail to the summit of Old Rag. When you get close to the top, the granite can get a bit slick (especially early in the morning when dew is on the rocks) in places so you have to be careful. I would not recommend this hike on a wet day, I think for the average person, it would be a bit too slippery on the upper portions of the hike. There is also a place where you have to scramble over and under rocks and one place where you drop down roughly 12 feet into a narrow, vertical cleft/fracture in the rock. The views from the summit area are very beautiful of the surrounding Virginia countryside. The hike took me about 5 hours, I probably could have taken less time, but I took a lot of pictures on this hike.

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunnyvale, CA
Top Contributor
132 reviews 132 reviews
35 attraction reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
134 helpful votes 134 helpful votes
“Definitely not for whimps”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2013

Most of the hike is on nice trails, albeit quite steep. The part that is difficult is just the last bit - maybe half a mile - where you are basically bouldering. Make sure you have shoes with rubber soles for good traction: a lot of the high-traffic boulders are quite smooth from, well, high traffic,

Once you get to the summit you'll be happy you toughed it out.

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, New York
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Excellent, but difficult hike!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

I rated this excellent for people that enjoy hiking long, strenuous trails. It is basically 2 miles of switchbacks up the mountain to a summit of 3,291'. Very tiring, all uphill. Then it is about 1.9 miles of rock scrambling, which is amazing. Some difficult parts, but very much do-able by most. The views are spectacular and your reward for killing yourself to get up there! From the summit your choice is to go back the way you came or continue downhill for the next 5.1 miles. Yes, it's downhill, but it is a really long walk. We went in early May on a Friday morning and crowds were not a problem. I suggest doing this hike first thing in the morning because afternoons I hear are very crowded. They say allow up to 7-8 hours. It took us 5 with several short breaks.

Visited May 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlottesville, Virginia
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 54 cities Reviews in 54 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Dad not ready for this”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

but, it was great. Kids kicked my butt on the way up, but I kept up on the way down! You need to be in decent shape to make it through and up. But you can always take the safe route. enjoy.

Visited September 2012
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