Hard 11 Mile Hike in West Virginia - Sugar Knob Hike

  • September 7, 2013 · 10:00 AM
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Where: Hard 11.2 mile Sugar Knob Hike in Wardensville, WV. Never leave home without a hiking map. Please either print and bring the trail map and description with you or save it on your phone so you have it with you on the hike. The hike is about a 2 hour drive from the DC metro area. The trail follows streams for most of the way, so the pups can stay nice and cool.  It doesn't seem like there's too much elevation change, but it is 11 miles, so be prepared for a long hike. You can follow this link for directions, description, printable Topo Maps, etc.

Getting to Trailhead from I-81: A comment on getting to the trail head ... from 81 take Route 55 West about 18 or 19 miles into Wardensville, WV. Two blocks after the Shell gas station, turn right onto Sanfield Road (if you get to the stop sign that marks the end of Rt. 55 ... you've got about a tenth of a mile too far). At the end of Sanfield Road, make a left onto North Mountain Road. Then make your first right onto Waites Run. From here, it's approximately 5 miles to the trail head (the last 1.5 or so is on a gravel road). Parking is on the left just before the bridge. The trail head is on your right, before the bridge.

Length/Time: 11.2 miles / 6.0 hours (loop hike)

Difficulty: "Hard" due to length and a steep assent.

Leashes: OFF-Leash. The parking is on the shoulder of the road so leashes should be used until we get on the trail.  You need to have a leash with you during the hike as well.  Also a reminder to be respectful of other hikers. I usually ask that we yield the right of way to other trail users. Please read up on NOVA Traildogs off-leash policy before you sign up.

Water: There are lots of streams for the dogs, but it's always good to bring extra just in case.  Make sure you have enough for you, especially if it's a hot day.  Rule of thumb is 2 liters for every 8-12 miles.

Foot Wear: Hiking boots are strongly recommended.  This area tends to be rocky.  We will also be doing lots of stream crossings, so water resistant/proof footwear would be helpful.

Food: A snack/lunch for the trail is always a good idea.  You can bring something for your pup as well, but please ask before sharing treats.

Carpool: Parking is along the shoulder of the road, so cutting down on car traffic would be great.  Watch the comment section on carpooling info as we get closer to the event.

Weather: I will cancel by Friday afternoon if there is a strong chance of thunderstorms.

RSVP Policy: Just FYI, the +1 or +2 is for people, not dogs. There are usually people on the waiting list, so please update your RSVP as soon as you know you can't make it.  If you need to cancel I ask for 24 hour notice.  Please review the NOVA Traildog RSVP Policy before signing up.

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  • Rachel

    Thanks for organizing this, Sarah!!!

    September 9, 2013

  • Kevin

    Good times guys, thanks for showing me around the trails. I stopped by the Hawk camp. Nice place.

    1 · September 8, 2013

  • Sarah

    Thanks for coming out everyone! I had a great time! Miney's passed out on the couch. Camping was great too! I'll try to incorporate that more now the weather's getting cooler.

    1 · September 8, 2013

  • Rachel

    Another great hike with a great group! The camping was a great addition.

    1 · September 8, 2013

  • Steve

    I'm going to have to skip the hike today. I don't think Gunther is feeling well. He's started cringing when I touch his back Thursday and he threw up last night. This morning he won't eat.

    He had a bout of Lymes' Disease in the spring. I hope it's not flaring up again.

    September 7, 2013

  • Elizabeth

    I'm so sorry I won't be able to make it after all. Bosley and I hope to catch up with you all soon. Safe and happy hiking!

    September 6, 2013

  • Heather R.

    Enjoy your hike and I will meet/see everyone next year :)

    1 · September 6, 2013

  • Elizabeth

    I would really like to do this hike but worry about introducing my dog to a larger group of unknown and unleashed dogs. He is a great hiker with good recall. He also is the kind of guy who needs to settle in with new people as well. I'm just trying to gauge if this group is a good fit for him offleash. Anyone have any thoughts?

    September 4, 2013

    • jeremy

      Hey Elizabeth. Mine is confused if she wants to be dominant or submissive sometimes so I've run into that problem a couple times with unknown dogs too. I found very useful this practice, for example at the Accotink meetup there were probably close to 20-30 people with dogs. What I did was when everyone was congregating before the hike I took 10-15 minutes of having my dog lay down (sometimes it takes calm, assertive repetition) about 75 feel away until she calms down, sub-misses (paws cross, starts using nose instead of eyes) and after she did awesome with all the dogs. Throwing an excited or anxious dog into an excited or anxious situation can sometime be more difficult. Plus Sarah is right once we all form a "pack" and get moving together it is much easier for the dogs to get along.

      September 4, 2013

    • Elizabeth

      Jeremy, Thanks for the suggestion. I will just have to give people and pups alike the disclaimer to give the big black poofy dog some space. He is unique looking with a very expressive face so people tend to stare and approach him right away. Once out on the trail he will likely be way too preoccupied to care. Now my only worry is snakes. We hiked the area around Bears Den last week and saw a copperhead and a water moccasin. Hoping it was just the heat and humidity that brought them out that day.

      September 5, 2013

  • Steve

    Is anyone coming from or through Fairfax for just the hike? Want to car pool?

    I can't do the over-night, so it's just a day trip for us.

    September 4, 2013

  • Sarah

    Hi campers. Everything looks good for getting out of town on Friday. I should be able to leave by 2pm at the latest, getting to the campground by 4pm. I will try to get the group campsite if it looks nice, or a couple sites that are next to each other. Reminder - here's the campground info, including the address:

    http://files.meetup.com/1006984/Hawk%20Campground%20Info.pdf

    Remember to bring water. There is a pump there, but I read some reviews that say it's not great for drinking. Also everyone please bring one garbage bag and lots of dog poo bags. It is pack in/pack out, so we need to bring our trash out with us. The campground is technically on-leash, so we need to be respectful of neighbors. If your dog is a wanderer he/she will need to be tied up. If you are planning on coming up Friday and/or Saturday let me know. After I make camp on Friday I will find cell reception and leave an update for everyone. Looking forward to the hike and camping!

    September 3, 2013

  • Nick

    Sorry I keep canceling.. have some family health issues this entire summer that keeps me away on weekends.. I hope I can make one in the fall

    September 3, 2013

    • Sarah

      No problem. Hopefully you can make it to one this fall.

      September 3, 2013

  • Theresa

    So sorry to have to miss this one after all, but now lucky person on the waiting list will get to go.

    1 · September 2, 2013

  • Sarah

    Camping update. I may head up Friday afternoon if my schedule allows it. That way I can check out the campground and secure us a space. I'll let you know for sure next week. If anyone else is able to head out early, they'd be welcome to join me.

    August 28, 2013

    • Rachel

      I will see if I can come up on Friday too.

      1 · August 29, 2013

    • jeremy

      I can go on Friday. Only thing better than camping one night in WV? Two nights.

      1 · August 30, 2013

  • Steve

    If it's not to hot, we'll be there. Gunther is a wimp about heat.

    1 · July 17, 2013

    • Theresa

      So am I, and my girl Clover. Let's hope for cool temps...

      August 29, 2013

  • Sarah

    Here is the campground info for those interested:

    http://files.meetup.com/1006984/Hawk%20Campground%20Info.pdf

    August 28, 2013

  • Sarah

    Hi everyone. Just wondering if anyone is up for camping after the hike (weather permitting). It would not be a NOVA TD event. I have never camped in that area before, and we could get out there and find out it's not going to work. I was planning on throwing my camping stuff and some extra food in my car and hoping for the best. There may be campsites along the river (no outhouses) and there is also national forest campground not too far from 55 that I'd like to check out. Reply to this comment or send me a message if you're interested. If there are a few people I will look into some options :)

    1 · August 11, 2013

    • Steve

      Gunther and I might be up for it, too. I've never camped with him, but first time for everything.

      1 · August 19, 2013

    • Matt M.

      Yep, Danny and I are in for camping after the hike!

      August 28, 2013

  • jeremy

    I am coming from the Alexandria/Kingstown area next to the Springfield metro and am driving a van that could comfortable fit 2 more people and 2 more dogs if anyone wants to carpool for this little adventure.

    August 19, 2013

    • Sarah

      I didn't have plans to go to a winery after the hike. I don't think there are any close by. Definitely bring your adult beverage of choice to the campground. We will definitely be relaxing and cooking out after the hike.

      1 · August 20, 2013

    • Steve

      There is no winery. I was thinking of the Passage Creek water hike on the 31st. I'm going to both.

      How about camping the night of the 7th?

      August 20, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    If anyone would like to take their dog out on a weekday let me know. I have a Lakeland Terrier and we enjoy hiking. She is a little shy around other dogs but would be fine. Thanks!

    August 6, 2013

    • jeremy

      Hey Patricia, I work from home most of the time and am always looking new buddies for Abbie to hike and socialize with.

      August 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I am heading back to Oregon this week so won't be able to make the hike. Have fun!

    1 · August 18, 2013

  • Sarah

    Hi everyone, just a reminder for RSVPing. The +1 or +2 is for people, not dogs. I am assuming everyone is bring 1-2 dogs.

    July 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Plus Mastiff

    July 17, 2013

  • Theresa

    Might want to make this one. More info? Will dogs be allowed off-leash ?

    July 17, 2013

    • Sarah

      Hi Theresa. I added more info. Yes, it will be off leash. Please read the updated description. If you have any more questions definitely let me know.

      July 17, 2013

  • jeremy

    WV, I am so in.

    1 · July 17, 2013

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