Starting Point - Peaks of Otter Visitor Center (Mile Marker 85.6 on the Blue Ridge Parkway)
Ending Point - Peaks of Otter Visitor Center (Mile Marker 85.6 on the Blue Ridge Parkway)
Hike Distance/Rating/Elevation - 9.8 miles/Strenuous/3200 feet of elevation
Disclaimer #1 - This hike is rated as a strenuous hike. Since this hike is rated as a strenuous hike, all hikers are going to start this hike on the wait list until I can verify the hiking experience of all hikers on the wait list. Those hikers, who have not hiked a strenuous hike with me, will need to answer the following vetting questions.
1. How often do you hike?
2. What strenuous hikes have you completed?
3. When and what was the last strenuous hike that you completed?
Answer to these questions will need to be emailed to me at [masked] or via Meetup messages. Failure to answer these questions within one week of the RSVP will move the hiker from the wait list to NOT GOING.
Hike Highlights - Sharptop Trail, Buzzards Roost, 360 degree views from the summit of Sharptop, Lake Trail, Flattop Trail, 360 degree views from the summit of Flattop, multiple viewpoints from both the Sharptop and Flattop Trails
Hike Details - We are going to wrap up the second weekend of January with a fantastic hike to the summits of the two main peaks of The Peaks of Otter area: Sharptop and Flattop. We are going to form carpools shortly before 8:00 AM at the Fontaine Research Park. From the carpool location, we are going to make our way down to the Peaks of Otter Visitor Center. We are going to cross the Parkway and start the climb up to the summit of Sharptop, the more popular of the two peaks, on the Sharptop Trail. Along the climb up Sharptop, we will take the side trail over to Buzzards Roost and the amazing views from there. We will retrace our steps back to the Sharptop Trail and continue the climb up to the summit of Sharptop. Once we have reached the summit of Sharptop, we will have amazing and stunning 360 degree views of the Virginia Piedmont, the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the Shenandoah Valley. After soaking in the views from Sharptop and taking a lot of pictures, we will retrace our steps back down to the Lake Trail. We will follow the Lake Trail across Rt. 43 to the Flattop Trail. We will hike the Flattop Trail and make the climb to the summit of Flattop. Near the summit, there will be several rock outcroppings and vistas. We will make our way to the summit and spectacular views from Flattop. After soaking in the views and taking a lot of pictures, we will retrace our steps back to the Peaks of Otter Visitor Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway and complete the hike. Please make sure to review the hike link below before signing up for the hike.
As is tradition with my hikes, there will be an optional post hike at a local brewery in the Bedford area. Carpools can be arranged accordingly, for those who wish to partake in the post hike.
What to Bring - Broken in hiking boots, layers of clothing for winter hiking, $8 for your driver if not driving, a good day pack, a good camera/phone, lunch/snacks, 3 to 4 liters of water, first aid kit, possibly traction
Disclaimer #3 - GetHiking Charlottesville's Organizers are not professional guides. Expect the same risks and take the same precautions you would take if you were hiking alone. With your RSVP you agree with this disclaimer - Disclaimer (https://www.meetup.com/GetHiking-Charlottesville-Charlottesville-VA/pages/21088739/Disclaimer/)