This is a 9.3-mile loop hike in Shenandoah NP that has a 1900 feet elevation gain that includes hiking to the top of Hawksbill Mountain (4,050 ft), which is the highest point in Shenandoah National Park. From the parking area we will start down the Cedar Run Trail for 50 yards to the intersection of the Big Meadows Horse Trail and then turn right on the yellow blazed Big Meadows Horse Trail. The first half of this loop hike is a forest walk that passes 2 feeder streams for Rose River, and the second half is vista after vista from both the Appalachian Trail and Hawksbill Summit. We will have lunch along the way at one of the vistas. The last leg of the hike is the final ascent/descent to the top of Hawksbill Mountain.
We will try to respect everyone's individual pace by stopping at intersections, but be prepared for this hike to be conducted at a pace that is a moderate to fast pace 2.50 - 3.50 mph (this will slow down on elevation gain, difficult terrain, or where it isn't safe).
2. Maps for hike:
Here is a trail map- through the Hiking Upward website: https://www.hikingupward.com/SNP/HawksbillFranklinCliffs/images/Map.pdf
3. Event Leader:
Shenandoah National Park maps: https://www.nps.gov/shen/planyourvisit/maps.htm
Hiking Upward site: https://www.hikingupward.com/SNP/HawksbillFranklinCliffs/
5. Directions from Centreville Park and Ride to Trailhead:
Use these directions from Centreville Park and Ride to the Lower Hawksbill Parking Area across from the trailhead to the Cedar Run trailhead: https://goo.gl/maps/XiS25tzRpGv
Hikers should bring appropriate footwear and socks and be comfortable walking on a variety of surface conditions including rocks and across streams. Bring sufficient amount of water (2-3 liters) and food. Wear appropriate clothing depending on the weather.
7. Carpool Location:
We will meet at Centreville Park and Ride. Drive time from the carpool location to the trail head parking lot is around 1 hour and 45 minutes depending on traffic and time at the Thornton Gap entrance station. We will leave the Park and Ride promptly at 0715 am, so please arrive on or before 7:10 am. I am driving a grey Toyota 4 Runner.
8. Meeting at the Lower Hawskbill Mountain Parking Area
If you are meeting us at the Lower Hawksbill Mountain Parking Area, please be there by 9:00 am. Here is the map with directions from the Centreville Park and Ride to the Lower Hawksbill Parking Area: https://goo.gl/maps/XiS25tzRpGv
9. Other Information:
• Rating: B https://www.meetup.com/NVHC-Hiking/pages/22998158/NVHC_Hiker_Guide/
• Suggested Carpool Fee: $6.00 per person.
• Shared Park Entry Fee: $ 30.00 per vehicle (BRING Your National Park Passes) https://www.nps.gov/shen/planyourvisit/fees.htm
10. Additional Important Info:
• Emergency Phone Numbers: 911 or Shenandoah National Park[masked]
• Dogs are able to use this trail but must be kept on a leash (see our rules on bringing a dog: https://tinyurl.com/nvhcdogpolicy
• Park Fees: See above. Bring your National Park pass if you have one.
MEMBERS MAY ONLY BRING ONE GUEST
PLEASE PRINT OUT ANY MAPS THAT YOU THINK YOU MAY NEED
****REMINDER: Bring a minimum of 2 liters of water, good hiking shoes, as the terrain is difficult, and appropriate clothing depending on the weather.
****You must be experienced in hikes of this distance and elevation gain. We hike at a moderate to fast pace****