Shenandoah River State Park: Bear Bottom Loop: A Moderate 8 Miles

  • June 30, 2013 · 9:00 AM
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Shenandoah River State Park!

Bear Bottom Loop Trails: A Moderate 8 Mile Hike

Shenandoah River State Park, one of Virginia's newest State Parks. The land for this park was purchased with funds from the 1992 General Obligation Bond. Located just down river from Bentonville, the park boasts five miles of river frontage and 1,504 acres of rolling pastures, quiet forest, and beautiful vistas.

Wildlife you are likely to see during your visit may include raccoon, black bear, wild turkey, white tailed deer, bobcat, fox, beaver, opossums, and skunks just to name a few. In addition there are many types of insects, birds of prey, snakes, fish, trees and wildflowers. 

Hike Pace

This hike will be led at an average hiking pace of about 2.5 mph.

Trail Information

Nearby City: Front Royal, VA

Length: 8 total miles

Trail Type: Loop

Skill Level: Moderate

Season:  Year-round 

Elevation Gain:  700 Feet

Facilities:  There are no restrooms at the trailhead.  There are restrooms at the Visitor Center about 1/2 mile from the trailhead. 

Concessions: Drinks and snacks are available at the visitor center.

Visitor Center and Gift Shop: The visitor center features local wildlife and has touch-screens for learning about the region's history and bird species. There is also an aquarium that has fish from the Shenandoah River. The center has a gift shop that sells concessions (see above), novelty items, shirts, jackets, etc. This parks hours are 8:00 a.m. through dusk.. Note: This park is, like many parks now, a Trash Free Facility-refuse must be removed by park visitor. Pack it in and carry it out. A central refuse collection area is at the Cullers Overlook. 

Our RSVP Policies and Group Etiquette

Click here to review our policies 

Weather Information

We hike rain or shine! Click here for up to the minute weather information for the trailhead.

Carpool Information

There are 2 carpools for this hike!

Baltimore Area Carpool

To carpool or caravan, people can arrange to meet at Savage Station. You should post that on the Comments section. Click here for directions to Savage Station.

DC Area Carpool

People can also arrange to meet at the Centreville Park & Ride lot. You should post that on the Comments section. Click here for directions to Centreville Park & Ride.

If you can drive or want to carpool from additional locations, please post that location in the comment section below. For those who need a ride, reach out to the drivers. Make friends, and support the environment - by just offering a ride!

Directions to the Trailhead

Click Here for Directions to Where We Meet for this Hike.

Hike is at 9:00 a.m.

Savage Station Carpool time is 6:45 a.m. 

Centreville Park & Ride time is 7:15 a.m.

Park Fees

$3.00 per car Weekdays $4.00 per car Weekends and Holidays

Please remember we are a social hiking group that values fellowship and camaraderie and practice good hike etiquette. We take breaks as necessary and have at least one guide in the front in addition to a "sweeper" in the back which means that no hiker is left behind. If you get upset because someone has to rest at the top of a hill etc. then please find another group! We are very supportive, encouraging, and focus on safety while getting or staying fit on the trail and practicing leaving no trace.

Fido is Welcome on this Hike

Let's have good times and see you on the trail!



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  • Kellie C.

    Congrats to and thank you to Kevin and Lindsay for volunteering to lead their first hike as members of the Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group leadership team, yay!

    July 1, 2013

  • liz

    wonderful! hot and humid, but great trail and company - let's do it again when not so steamy!

    1 · June 30, 2013

    • Kevin M.

      Liz, Thank you for your patience and understanding today. Especially John for helping out too! ;)

      1 · June 30, 2013

  • Lindsay O.

    we ended up hiking 9.57 miles and not 8 miles, and even though I ran out of steam a little on the last 1.5 miles- it was great. Thanks Kevin.

    1 · June 30, 2013

    • Kevin M.

      Lindsay, Thank you so much for your partnership today. I am glad we met and will enjoy further adventures with you again.

      1 · June 30, 2013

  • Kevin M.

    Great for a moderate hike.

    1 · June 30, 2013

  • Gisèle

    Anyone driving from a metro accessible area (I'm in NW DC)? I'd love to come but need a ride and will help out with gas.

    June 29, 2013

    • Gisèle

      Hi John, only just seeing this. I checked wmata and I can't make it there for anywhere close to 7:15am (metro not open in time). :s womp womp womp. Thank you though for being willing to help.

      1 · June 29, 2013

  • Audrey W.

    Kevin- if I want to car pool with someone, what should I do? Just drive to ceterville park & ride and go from there? This is my first time to do the hike. Also, is there a direction to Centerville park and ride place? Thanks!

    June 29, 2013

    • John

      Audrey, I offered to meet another hiker (Kerri) at Franconia metro station at around 7:15 but have not heard back from her. Offer is still available. It is about 1hr 40 min drive from Franconia to the trail head. V/r John

      1 · June 29, 2013

    • John

      Oh, or if you wanted we could meet around exit 156 off of 95 if you wanted to slug it in from there.

      June 29, 2013

  • Kevin M.

    ALL: My cell number is (703)[masked]

    June 29, 2013

    • Kevin M.

      It is the first time I am doing this hike but from the virtual hike I was able to look at online it appears to be mostly forested

      1 · June 29, 2013

    • Kellie C.

      @Liz, yes, the hike is almost all in the shade. Also, there is the stream. In one area, there is a car top boat launch that happens to also have wooden steps going down into the water. They don't call it Shenandoah River State Park for nothing:)

      June 29, 2013

  • Kellie C.

    Meetup will be down for scheduled maintenance Sunday morning, so be sure and write down or print up directions ahead of time!

    June 29, 2013

  • Lindsay O.

    Hello. Just to let you know that cell reception for me is pretty spotty in this park. Looking forward to seeing everyone on the hike.

    June 29, 2013

  • liz

    will have my pup w/me

    1 · June 29, 2013

16 went

Your organizer's refund policy for Shenandoah River State Park: Bear Bottom Loop: A Moderate 8 Miles

Refunds offered if:

  • the Meetup is cancelled
  • the Meetup is rescheduled
  • you can cancel at least 2 day(s) before the Meetup

Additional notes: Refund if you update your RSVP to a 'no' PRIOR to 48 hours of hike time.

Payments you make go to the organizer, not to Meetup. You must make refund requests to the organizer.

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