New time. Also this will be a snowshoe hike.
If you don't have snowshoes please bring some kind of traction devices. We will try the doubletop mountain first as this is accessible from outside the park. Skyline drive might be closed.
Also the new time is 7:00 am. There is NO $10 fee. We will try to finish by lunch and head over to a local lunch spot.
a better picture is available by clicking this link
Directions to parking:
south on U.S. 29 until reaching Route 231. Go north on 231 and then turn left on SR 670 towards Syria. Make another left on SR 649 and follow it to its end. SR 649 becomes Rapidan Road as it enters Shenandoah National Park. Continue on the road as it crosses a bridge across the Rapidan River, which forms the boundary of Shenandoah National Park and the Rapidan Wildlife Management Area. Shortly after the second bridge across the Rapidan River, you will see orange blazes on the right side of the road that indicate the beginning of the Wilhite Wagon Trail. Park on the left side of the road about 0.1 miles after the trailhead. If you miss the trailhead, the coordinates are[masked] N,[masked] W.
Place holder for a long hike. But we will be splitting this into several loops
so there will be an option for a short looped version. Look for that soon.
*** EXTREME HARDCORE OVER 26 miles AND lots of ELEVATION GAIN***
This is a place holder for another 4 peaks. Keith Ferguson is going to be in town from Arizona.
[b]Note: THIS EVENT IS NOT FULL BUT EVERYONE NEEDS TO SIGN IN AS WAITLISTED AND ANSWER THE QUESTION THAT POPS UP BEFORE I MOVE THEM TO YES.[/b][/color] This is another of 4 peaks series.
Details from the first 6:
If you have done the first 6 you will know what to expect. These are **EXTREMELY STRENOUS HIKES** so you may sign up for the wait list and answer the questions about the hardest hike you have done and I will then move you into the yes list.
Although this is **EXTREMELY HARD** there is some support. There will be coolers with Gatorade, water, other drinks and food at a few places. The suggested donation is $10.
The peaks are: Doubletop , Big Tom , Black Rock and Fork Mountain .
Note: the colors match with the traced outline on the map above
The route is as follows:
1. Meet at Centreville P&R for carpooling and
***BREAKFAST**** at Dunking Donuts across the parking lot.
2. Drive to Shenandoah National Park to end of route 648 near the
PATC Meadows cabin parking.
3. Loop 1: DoubleTop
a. *** WATER/GATORADE refill****
b. Continue on fireroad to Upper Dark Hollow Trail.
c. Left on UDH Trail to Rapidan Fire Road.
d. Left on RF road to DoubleTop Trail.
e. End back at parking lot for
****SNACKS ****, and ***Water/Gatorade REFILL***.
4. Loop 2: Big Tom (Skip this if you are running late)
a. Turn right to trail around cabin.
b. At the bend in the trail start bushwacking to Big Tom.
Note: This is a Bushwhack. If you are not comfortable continue onto
the trail and back to car.
c. ****SNACKS ****, and ***Water/Gatorade REFILL***.
5. Climb 3 + loop: Black Rock.
a. Continue on fireroad to Upper Dark Hollow Trail.
b. Right on UDH Trail to Rose River Fire Road.
c. Left on RRF road to Dark Hollow Falls Trail.
d. Left onto DHF trails to Skyline Road.
e. Left on Skyline Road to Big Meadows Restaurant.
f. ***LUNCH*** at Big meadows. If we arrive too early we will
do loop first. ***Water Refill***
LOOP 3: (skip this if you are too slow)
g. Continue on Skyline Drive to Rapidan fire road Trail head.
h. Right on RF road to Lewis falls trail
i. Continue on Lewis falls trail to Applachian trail.
j. Right on AT. Black rock is a short scramble off the trail.
h. If everyone is together we will continue on AT else meet
the others at Big meadows.
6. 4th peak: Fork Mtn (FAA relay tower):
a. Continue on AT to Mill Prong trail.
b. Left on MP trail to Fork mtn trail.
c. if slow, wait here for group to return
d. Right on Fork mtn trail to "The Sag" -- a 4 way of trails.
e. Left onto the fire road to FAA relay tower.
f. Back down the fire road to the Sag.
g. Right onto Fork Mtn trail
h. Continue onto to fire road
i. Right on Upper Dark Hollow Trail.
j. Right on fire road to parking.
** The END. More snacks and Beer ***
1. DoubleTop is really 4 or more tops. It is very steep and
and has good views (not on the real peak but on all along the
2. Big Tom has some Bushwhacking.
3. FAA relay tower. Not exciting but it is a landmark.
Can see the FAA tower from most of the other peaks.
4. A few water waterfalls. Dark Hollow falls is really beautiful.
We will also pass Lewis falls and Big Rock falls.
5. Lunch at Big Meadows. They have ice cream and beer :)
6. For the History buffs we will pass through Rapidan Camp National
Historic Landmark (Camp Hoover).
7. There is always the fun of 4 peaks: readjusting routes according
to group pace and time.
1. Hike at your own pace. It's ok to go off on your own as long as you have a map and cell phone. Leave me a text or voice message if you get done early and decide to leave. My cell is[masked]-8944.
2. Hike will not be cancelled. Rain or Shine. No requests for date/time change entertained. Nor will complaints about weather, bugs, etc. Please pack bug spray. You may leave extra clothes/rain gear in the parking lot. We will do a few loops around it. Might also want to pack a small headlamp.
3. If you are slow please sit out the short loops. There are 3 places to cut out sections and sync with other team members. There are also a few scheduled stops to sync up with.
4. Relax. If you are slow don't stress out too much. I will be at the back most of the time and will stop at all turns / high points to wait for all members.
5. Fast or slow, please spend some time with the group. At least at the snack points, the lunch point and the end. I know some people don't like pictures taken. Hope everyone is ok with pictures or atleast tolerate some pictures :) Please let us know beforehand.
6. Pack in, pack out. I will have garbage/recycling bags at the trail head. There is garbage at the lunch spot too. It is ok to leave bio-degradable stuff like banana peels. Just keep out of sight. I will have a roll of tissue paper and shovel with me for calls of nature. Just ask. Dig atleast 6 inches. There is a toilet at the lunch spot.
7. Please carpool and split the cost of the gas. From Centreville P&R it is about 140 miles round trip. At 20 cents a mile thats $28. Please divide that by number of passengers. Plus or minus if you are driving from other places.
8. Don't worry about food, water too much. I will have a well stocked car with cheese sticks, slim jim jerky, oranges, bananas, gatorade, various chips, water, ice, nuun, cliff and other granola bars, etc. Please bring a 2 liter water bladder.
In summary, relax, don't stress out about keeping up or with a slow group. Do what feels right to you.
Directions to Trail head:
1. from Centreville P&R make a left to Stone Road and another left onto US-29 S
2. Take ramp to I-66 W and go for 9 miles
3. Take exit 43A to merge onto US-29 S
4. Stay on US-29 for about 12 miles
5. In Warrenton turn right onto US-211 W
6. Go about 28 miles and turn left onto US-522 S in Sperryville
7. Turn immediate left again to stay on US-522.
8. Turn right onto US-231 S in about a mile
9. Go about 10 miles and turn right onto Etlan Rd. There will be a sign for Cedar Run/White Oak Canyon Parking
10. When you get to a T junction, turn left on SR 643 in about 4 miles (Note: Right turn will take you to Cedar Run/White Oak parking)
11. Turn right on VA-670 in about a mile
12. Turn left onto SR-648 in about 1.5 miles
13. Park at end of road.
A larger printable map is here: http://karnam.info/Rapidan_4_peaks.jpg
I used http://geodistance.com to get a trail distance. It came out to be 29.5 miles.
I think the actual distance could be +/- 10% as my sketch of the trail was close but not quite accurate around the tight turns and steep sections.