Strenuous Night Hike!
Let's Enjoy the Sunrise from the Peak of Old Rag in Shenandoah National Park!
This Hike is Timed So That We Should be at the Peak of the Mountain to Enjoy the Sunrise! For This Particular Hike, the Moon is Very Near Full to Boot!
This night hiking adventure is strenuous and not for inexperienced hikers. This is normally a pretty strenuous hike but it will be compounded due to the dark for an ultimate challenge.
This adventure begins with an easy hike on a wide trail through dense forest. At these lower levels you are most likely to see wildlife. As the path steepens, the hike becomes a climb through the woods with numerous switchbacks and large boulders. After about 1½ miles the forest gives way to the rock scramble and plenty of wonderful views. From here to the summit you will go over, through, and under boulders on the Ridge Trail. Once at the summit the view is spectacular and panoramic.
You will climb through caves, between fissures, around balancing rocks, and up a natural staircase.
Yep, the hike is at 2:30 am--you read right! Our team challenges those of you who can handle this to get your butt up and join us on this hike!
Special Night Hike Gear Requirement: Headlamps!
This is a night hike and headlamps (no flashlights) are REQUIRED for this hike. No flashlights permitted as they are a safety hazard under normal hiking situations, but due to the fact that you will need to use your hands on the rock scramble, it only makes it more important that you have a headlamp, with a change of batteries just in case please.
Due to a night hike and rock scramble the hike pace will average 2 to 2.5 mph. If you have any questions, please contact Kellie or any of the leaders posted at the bottom of this posting as we are happy to help. No worries as we have experience with this and it is a ton of fun, as long as you are capable and prepared. If you have ever hiked Old Rag before than you will do just fine.
Click here for pictures of a past hike on this trail!
"The rocks of Old Rag are among Shenandoah National Park's oldest. Billions of years ago, the granite that forms the crest of Old Rag was thousands of feet underground. With time, the rocks uplifted to the point where they now perch atop this 3,268--foot mountain. At the same time, the igneous rock that once surrounded today's boulders eroded and exposed them. Seeing these rocks, shrouded in all the various weather conditions is one of the reward of hiking to the summit of Old Rag. Another reward includes completing a quick self-taught course in "rock scrambling 101" as you scramble over and under boulders. The first 2/3 of the hike is on a trail through the trees, while the upper part is open and rocky with rock scrambling up to the summit.
This hike is rain, snow or shine. Click Here for the link we use for the forecast as it is specifically for the mountain.
Nearby City: Sperryville
Length: 9.2 total miles
Trail Type: Loop
Skill Level: Strenuous due to some rock scrambling to the summit (no special gear required for the rock scramble) and the fact that most of this hike will be in the dark.
Trailhead Elev: 1200 feet
Elevation Gain: 2200 feet
Elevation at Summit: 3291 feet
Duration: 5-7 hours since this is a night hike and the going is a little slower than during the daylight
Highlights: Mile long rock scramble and vistas
Wildlife: Deer, foxes, black bears, skunks, and bobcats
There are 2 carpools for this hike!
Baltimore Area Carpool
To carpool or caravan from the Baltimore metro area, meet at Savage Station. Click here for directions to Savage Station. Use the comment section to discuss carpooling with other members.
DC Area Carpool
To carpool or caravan from the metro DC area, meetup at the Centerville Park and Ride. Click here for information and directions to the Centerville location. Use the comment section to discuss carpooling with other members.
If you can drive or want to carpool from additional locations, please post your 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.
Special Winter Gear Note:
Traction gear is a must in order to hike in the winter with our group for safety and so we can hike all four seasons! The most dependable/reliable gear in our opinion is either Kahtoola Microspikes or STABILicers Originals (Stabilicer "Originals" and not the "lites" as too many "lites" have snapped while out on the trail) and YakTrax are highly discouraged. Traction gear/ice cleats come in handy for getting the mail or walking the dog, in addition to any other outdoor activity where there is ice involved! You can run on the ice with them on and many runners do just that!
Sunrise: 7:25 a.m.
Click here for gear suggestions and recommendations for hiking
Meet and Greet is from 2:15 a.m. - 2:30 a.m.
Hike Step Off Time is 2:30 a.m. Sharp
Important Note: We Must Leave On Time Because this Hike is Timed So We Are at The Peak to Enjoy the Sunrise. As a Result, We Are Not Able to Wait for Anyone Who Might be Running Late and There is No Cell Reception at the Trailhead. Thanks for Understanding and Please Pad Your Time Accordingly.
Carpool time from Savage Station is 11:45 p.m..
Carpool time from Centerville Park and Ride is 12:45 a.m.
Please note that our holiday weekend hikes and special night hikes are not refundable due to too many people backing out of the at the last minute before the refund cut-off and keeping others from being able to go. Sorry, but this is the only way to help make sure that there is a good turnout and our leaders not offer to lead a hike on their holiday in vain...or they will be burned enough that they will no longer offer. Since we have made holiday hikes non-refundable it has boosted attendance rate significantly and often have perfect attendance, yay! Please note that our refund policy is always listed just beneath the price, and you are required to check a box that you agree to it before you can pay, so I put it in three places to avoid any issues. Thanks so much for your understanding and have a great time.
Fido is NOT Welcome on This Hike