Surprisingly Awesome Backpack Hiking In Virginia

Backpack hikers are a community all their own consisting of avid nature enthusiasts who love to explore the Great Outdoors. I find myself always researching new places to hike and new excursions to enjoy. If you find yourself looking to reach new heights and conquer new summits on the map, I urge you to take the State of Virginia into serious consideration.

The Black Ridge Trail

This area is one of my favorites on the Blue Ridge Parkway. You will enjoy not always having the great views obstructed by trees with barely any sunlight. A portion of this trail from a stretch of the Rock Castle Gorge Trail that runs from the Rocky Knob Information Station to Grassy Knoll provides a nice open view of gorgeous scenery. The rest of the hike remains interesting for it passes farms and the ruins of a mountain home.

Other great hiking places include:

  • Buffalo Mountain Trailhead -  Short walk to the summit with 700' elevation
  • Hidden Valley Lake - 5 mile moderate hiking trail 3500 above sea level, Abington VA
  • Stiles Falls - 4.1 mile moderate hiking trail with waterfall near Roanoke VA
  • Old Rag Mountain Loop Trail - 8.6 mile challenging hike in Shenandoah National Park
  • White Oak Canyon Trail - 6 mile moderate hike with creeks and 6 major waterfalls
  • Massanutten Storybook Trail - Easier hike with stunning views overlooking the valley
  • Cascades National Recreation Trail - 4 mile easy hike featuring Cascade Falls- Scenic Lower Trail
  • Powhatan State Park - Powhatan VA, Very clean. James River hiking trail well maintained

 Devil’s Fork Loop Trail

The Devil's Fork in Ft. Blackmore, Virginia is perfect for true backpack hiking enthusiasts. During the 7.2 mile round trip trek you'll be hiking over boulders of 13 creeks, so be sure to plan your visit during low water conditions. The highlight of the trail is the spectacular Devil’s Bathtub, a naturally smooth swimming hole.

 Prefer Cabins To Tents While Hiking?

Appalachian Mountain Cabins in the beautiful mountains of scenic Southwestern Virginia has unique and private cabins in a wooded setting that are perfectly suited for family vacations and romantic weekends.  Pool and park privileges are included at the adjacent Natural Tunnel State Park where you can do a day backpacking hike with a picnic in your hiking bag and have a less "out in nature" night.

Backpack Hiking With Non-Nature Lovers

 Not everyone likes hiking, (can you even imagine?) so the "Glamping" cabins may be an alternative when vacationing with family or friends. Some of you can go off hiking for the day or even overnight while the not-so-adventurous remain behind in comfort they are happier with. It's a win-win for everyone. There are cabins available near Charlottesville VA with up to a 10 guest capacity. Guests will be nestled in the middle of a quiet forest next to the river, a short distance away from Virginia's famous Shenandoah Valley. There is private land with nature trails, Buddhist gardens, hammocks, and frog ponds and you can even splash in the Rockfish Gap River.

What a great state Virginia is to visit.  There is something for everyone with nature being forefront, yet not forced on anyone who likes a different approach to leisure time. There are plenty of forests, mountains, streams and hiking trails. You can also opt for great restaurants, day spas and a movie at night. They say "Virginia Is For Lovers", that has been their state slogan for a long time.  I say Virginia is for everyone.  Happy hiking...or whatever makes you happiest.

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