Bearfence Mountain Hike

Let's get rockin' and rollin' in Shenandoah this spring with a good old-fashioned rock scramble! While Old Rag may be justly famous for its rock scramble, this hike in the Central District of Shenandoah National Park offers a similar challenge, only this scramble is quite a bit shorter than Old Rag's and doesn't make you climb a mountain just to get to the funhouse part. Shortly after we begin from Skyline Drive, our path will take us scrambling over jumbled rocks atop Bearfence Mountain on our way to a 360-degree overlook. After taking in this and other outstanding views, we will continue south a few miles on the Appalachian Trail to the Posocin Fire Road. As we gently descend along this broad road,, we will pass by the picturesque if primitive Posocin Cabin, perhaps still occupied by the weekend's renters. We will proceed further downhill to see the ruins of an old Episcopal mission. We will then retrace our steps and return via the AT to our cars (skipping the rock scramble on the way back). Our strenuous 10-mile round-trip hike has an elevation gain of approximately 1100 feet, featuring climbing up, over, between and among rocks of every size and description. The scrambling, while not too difficult, does require a bit of full-body coordination, offering a decent way to limber up for (among other outings) Adventuring’s Old Rag Mountain hike later this season. Bring layers of clothing, lunch, water, sturdy footwear, and about $18 for fees. We will meet at the Kiss & Ride lot of the East Falls Church Metro at 8:30 a.m.; note the early start time.

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  • Harris

    Dave Great hike. Soo much fun!

    March 27, 2013

  • Jeff H.

    Dave- thanks for organizing such a fantastic hike. And for appeasing the weather gods so we would have such great weather.

    1 · March 25, 2013

  • Glenn E.

    Great hike. Next time I won't make dinner plans! ;-)

    2 · March 24, 2013

  • Stuart T.

    Some snow some mud some rocks and a long walk. No better way to spend a Saturday! Thanks David for leading!

    March 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    David thank you for such a wonderful hike! Very nice scenary, pace, an company! Everything was just swell!

    March 23, 2013

  • Priyanga

    Turned out to be a beautiful day for a hike - great weather, great company, and some fun rock scrambles with amazing views. Thanks David for leading! Northside 29 was a nice post-hike stop too :)

    March 23, 2013

  • Glenn E.

    My car is running, so I can drive and take three passengers.

    1 · March 22, 2013

  • David Marshall J.

    We're ON for tomorrow!! It should be the best day this weekend, mostly sunny skies, highs in the 40s out there. I did find a backup plan, if necessary,which would let us hike into the park to Bearfence. It's not as terribly steep as some of the other hikes into Shenandoah, but will add some elevation gain to our hike. See you tomorrow morning, 8:30am at East Fall Church. We will be making our customary pit stop at Sheetz.

    1 · March 22, 2013

  • Patrick C.

    Sorry to drop out: a friend had surgery and I have to visit him. Have fun!

    March 21, 2013

  • David Marshall J.

    Thursday Bearfence MTN update: It looks like this one is going to be a tough one to call with all this crazy weather! While no wintry weather is in the forecast, the melt/freeze cycle makes the Drive open and close quickly. If the drive closes Friday night, I'll make a decision and post it on Friday night. In the meantime, I'll see what I can do about an alternate route in the spirit of true adventuring. Have a great day!

    1 · March 21, 2013

  • Brad C.

    I am sorry but it turns out I will not be able to make it. And I have a swim meet the next day so I need to save my legs...

    March 19, 2013

  • David Marshall J.

    Hello all! I'm not sure what happened to my previous comment regarding Saturday's hike.. so here it is again! Overall, looks like great weather for our hike. As of now, Skyline Drive is closed. I suspect it will be open by Saturday. Do check back as we get closer to Friday for an update to see if our hike is a go.

    March 19, 2013

  • Debora

    Hi David:
    Do you know at what time the hike would be over?

    March 19, 2013

    • David Marshall J.

      Debora, we should be back to our cars at approximately 5pm as a very general estimate. It shouldn't involve any killer uphill segments this hike, so we should be able to keep a decent pace.

      March 19, 2013

  • Brad C.

    Sounds like fun. I would like to join you guys on this hike but I live out west in Haymarket. I would volunteer to meet other hikers that might live out my way at the Sheetz of Rt 66 (at Rt 15 and 55) and I could drive. Or I could meet the group at Skyline Drive entrance or the parking area at the trail head. Where are you parking and when might you get there?
    Thanks!

    March 4, 2013

    • David Marshall J.

      Bradley, We'd be happy for you to join us! We won't be heading towards Haymarket, however, you're welcome to meet us at the Sheetz off US29 & VA-230 (Wolftown-Hood Road) or at the trailhead. We should be at the trailhead by 11:15am at the Bearfence Mountain Parking Area, MP 56.4. I'll send you directions as we get closer to the hike.

      March 4, 2013

    • Brad C.

      Cool - thanks!

      March 4, 2013

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