Virginia recommendations
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Jamie Estep
(jestep) - F

Locale: ATX
Virginia recommendations on 04/23/2012 07:37:48 MDT Print View

Making a trip down to Norfolk in a few weeks. We're looking to do a 1 - 2 day trip and need some recommendations. Only have 1 vehicle, so needs to be out and back, or a loop, probably 12 miles or less. Doesn't need to be near Norfolk but would prefer not traveling extremely far. Would also like to fish, trout or bass. We were looking at Saint Mary's Wilderness. Any suggestions or other areas that would be worth a look.

Robert Kelly
(QiWiz) - MLife

Locale: UL gear @ QiWiz.net
Grayson Highlands on 04/23/2012 10:03:24 MDT Print View

Wild ponies are there. Great views. What's not to like? May be somewhat out of your way. N of Damascus, AT runs through it as well as other trails. Easy to do a loop hike there.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
VA on 04/23/2012 10:31:17 MDT Print View

I have not done St. Mary's but I hear its good, and I believe you can do a loop there. Grayson Highlands is a bit of a drive but its amazing. The AT and the Crest Trail make a loop through some of the most scenic country up there. I'd guess the loop is about 13 miles if you start from Grayson Highlands Stat Park. If you start from Elk Garden you can do a "Lolipop" loop thats more like 18-20 miles but it includes even more amazing scenery. Get the Trails Illustrated map of the area. Its a good guide to the trails and it identifies the springs where you can get water. I suggest an over nighter and a camp along the ridge somewhere in one of the meadows.

Here are some pictures of a fall hike. It will be greener when you go.

hike

Panorama

P2

Evan McCarthy
(evanrussia) - MLife

Locale: Northern Europe
Re: Virginia recommendations on 04/23/2012 11:55:25 MDT Print View

Lots of great options. You can't go wrong with Grayson Highlands/Mt. Rogers area.

Saint Mary's Wilderness is beautiful and quite popular. There really aren't views there but great waterfall and stream valleys, plus some interesting vegetation and old ruins of mines.

For more options in the general vicinity of St. Mary's, check out Shenanodoah National Park's southern district for some great hikes in the Brown Mountain/Rockytop/Big Run area. Or head to the Blue Ridge Parkway area for a great backpack of Three Ridges (~15 miles).

Helpful links:

www.hikingupward.com
www.midatlantichikes.com

Edited by evanrussia on 04/23/2012 11:56:13 MDT.

Jamie Estep
(jestep) - F

Locale: ATX
Thanks on 04/23/2012 12:10:19 MDT Print View

Thanks for the suggestions so far. I've never been anywhere north of South Carolina as far as Eastern US goes. I'll definitely take a look at these places.