Eight-and-a half-mile hike with about 1,500 feet of elevation gain. We will hike at a rate of about 2.3 miles/hour when moving.
We will meet at the Centerville Park and Ride at 7:50 a.m. to arrange carpools and leave by 8:00. Those meeting us at the trailhead, please be there by 9:30 and let one of the leaders know of your plan.
From the Park and Ride, we will drive to the Central District of the Shenandoah National Park, Thorthon Gap Pannorama Entrance. Take Route 66 West to Exit 43A, US-29 South. After 10-1/2 miles, turn right to US-15 BUS/US-29 BUS/US-211 W. In 2 miles, right turn to US-211. Then 34 miles to right turn into the Skyline Dr/Thorton Gap Entrance to Shenandoah National Park. After entering the park, there are restrooms at the comfort station on the right at Pannorama. Good place to stop. Then back on the road, drive two miles, which will put you less than a mile past Mile Post 33. Parking will be on your left at Meadow Spring Trailhead.
We will first hike down to Cave Falls, which is approximately 2-1/2 miles. We will stop at the falls for a bit. Then back up 2-1/2 miles to the parkway, where we will take a break at the parking lot area and have lunch. If someone wants to leave their lunch and extra water in a cooler in the car, should work nicely. Then we hike up to the Appalachian Trail and turn north to Mary's Rock, about 3-1/2 miles out-and-back. We will stop for a bit at Mary's Rock to enjoy the beautiful view, weather permitting.
Please bring plenty of water, snacks, and lunch. Poles and hiking boots are recommended but not required.
No dogs on this hike.
Carpool fee: $7.00
Park Entrance fee: $30.00 to be divided by folks in the car
Senior Pass or other National Park Pass covers this. So, there a benefit to having friends who are Senior Citizens. :)