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Moderate Sunset/Full Moon Hike 4.1 miles w/ Optional Picnic

  • Jul 12, 2014 · 6:30 PM
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Where: Big Schloss is within the George Washington National Forest and sits along the border between Virginia and West Virginia. This hike features a panoramic view over Trout Run Valley and should be a fantastic sunset! The hike uphill is about 3/4 mile, steep incline, followed by a few short up and down sections.  The trail is rocky and rooty in places. Not Good For People Scared of Heights - there are sections that have steep drop offs and a small crevice you have to navigate over. Sunset is at 8:34PM with twilight until 9:06PM. We'll leave the parking lot at 6:30PM sharp to give ourselves plenty of time to reach the summit. Once there, we will have about 45mins to an hour to hang out and watch the sunset.  Then we will head back down to the campground/parking area.

Trail Type: Out and back 

Distance: 4.1-miles total 

Difficulty: Medium (see our Trail Rating System for more details) 

Hiking Time:[masked] hours (including sunset time) 

Facilities: Pit toilets at trailhead, campsites available 

Restrictions: Off leash opportunity (see off leash guidelines); dogs must be leashed in the campground, but can be off on the trail 

What to Bring: With the full moon we should have lots of light getting down the from the knob. You should bring flashlights or headlamps with fresh batteries, appropriate clothing and footwear for summer weather, a blanket or towel to sit on if you desire, poo bags, plenty of water for you and your dog, and a camera.

Weather: Will cancel for rainy/completely overcast conditions.  

Additional Activities: Wolf Gap Campground has a nice picnic area.  If people want, we can meet at 5pm for a little social time before the hike.  Bring a snack and something to drink (non-alcoholic).  Camping is also available for those who desire. Spots are first come/first serve, so I recommend coming early if you want a spot. 

Camping: Wolf Gap Campground - Primitive I recommend getting there early if you plan to camp, due to limited availability. There are only 10 campsites on a first come first serve basis, with no fee.  There is no water, but there are pit toilets. Leashes are required in the campground.  

Directions: For customized driving directions, follow this link to the hiking upward site.  You can get google directions and see pictures of the parking area.  The trail starts by campsite #9 in case you miss us in the parking/picnic area.

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  • Steve

    What a great outing! Thanks for organizing it Sarah.

    I don't know what is harder, climbing up that first .7 miles or coming back down.

    1 · July 12, 2014

  • Colleen

    Just made it off the waitlist but it's too short notice for me to make it now. See you next time!

    July 10, 2014

  • Rachel R.

    My brother has asked that we not do the hike on this visit, so I have to give up my spot.
    I look forward to another hike.

    July 10, 2014

    • Sarah

      Sorry you'll have to miss it. Thanks for letting me know ahead of time!

      July 10, 2014

  • Johnny

    If anybody wants to carpool from Vienna Metro Station or Fair Oaks Mall, let me know. Doesn't matter who drives. Thanks!

    July 9, 2014

    • Eleanor

      Hi Carl, I'd be happy to carpool from Vienna Metro if that works for you.

      July 9, 2014

    • Carl

      Carpool from Vienna Metro sounds good

      July 10, 2014

  • Steve

    Is anyone considering camping Saturday night?

    July 7, 2014

    • Sarah

      It's too hot for me, but maybe someone else would like to join you. The spots are first come, first serve, so you may want to get there earlier in the day if you decide to camp.

      July 9, 2014

  • Diane

    Please add my husband too!

    1 · July 6, 2014

  • Suzanne

    Hi Sarah,
    So disappointed, but I had to cancel. My hiking buddy had an Achilles tendon injury this week, so we'll be off the trail for a little while. Hope to be back in form for some fall hikes. . .

    June 29, 2014

    • Sarah

      Sorry to hear about the injury. Hope to see you guys in the fall!

      June 29, 2014

  • Jenny

    Thanks for the information! Wyatt is not doing too good with crevices lately, so I'm a little worried about how he would do. We'll catch you guys next time!

    June 16, 2014

    • Sarah

      Thanks for letting me know. I thought I should give everyone a heads up since some people and dogs have had problems in the past. Hope to see you on another one soon!

      June 16, 2014

  • Sarah

    Hi all, I just updated the hike description. This one is not good for people or dogs who are scared of heights. There are sections that have steep drop offs and a small crevice you have to navigate over to get to the end point. You can check out pictures and reviews at

    June 16, 2014

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