This has been a favorite of many for a long time. This Trip starts at the Wiggens Spring Trail Head (AT Crossing) and hikes up the AT, across the excellent vistas of Cold Mtn and onto the Campbell Shelter area. Total hike is about 6-6 1/2 miles round trip.
Here's the plan:
Meetup at Hampton Town Center, across from Plaza Azteca at 7PM Friday evening. Carpool to the Trail Head, just outside of Buena Vista, Va. We'll camp in the meadow just across from the parking area. There is a small spring, but it's best to bring some extra water for breakfast Saturday morning and for Saturday's hike.
Saturday after breakfast we can check and talk about gear or just get started up the AT to Cold Mountain and the Campbell Shelter. There is a creek for water at the shelter. We'll set up in the large tent camping area which has several nice fire rings. If you don't have a tent, the shelter can fit about 10 people easily.
It will be cold(-ish) so I recommend you plan on hot meals. If you don't have a stove yet, bring an extra fuel cartridge (small) and a small pot and I or someone will loan you a stove. Or I or someone can boil hot water for your meal.
When we get to Saturday's camping area, we set up tents, draw and filter water, collect firewood and get a campfire going. It will get dark early so a campfire can be pretty nice.
Sunday morning after a leisurely breakfast, we'll take the Hotel Trail back down the mountain to the cars.
We'll stop for an early lunch at one of the very nice restaurants on Hwy 29 headed back towards Charlottesville.
Directions to the Trail Head: From Charlottesville, take Hwy 29 towards Lynchburg, then turn right on Hwy 60, then turn right onto Coffeytown Road, then turn right onto Wiggens Spring Road, follow to the AT crossing sign and small parking area on left. From Buena Vista (off I64) take Hwy 60 towards the Blue Ridge Parkway, turn left onto Coffeytown Road, the turn right onto Wiggens Spring Road.