The trail up to Skyline was easy. Paine Run was running strong, not so high that getting soaked was inevitable, but we had to pick our spots at a few crossings. I had brought my fly rod and was hoping to find some brook trout in Paine Run but the pools looked empty and the water felt warm for trout. Great hike with some great views. This was a disappointing hike for us. Started early (7:30am) to beat the heat. The Trayfoot mountain ridge line is a bit wild and is obviously not as hiked of a trail as the rest of the hike as it is very grown up with grasses and whatnot but there were not too many blow downs across the trail. Many moons and a couple of knee surgeries later, I have given up hiking. Lots of down trees and limbs had to drag a lot of it away to make room for the tent. Quick 90 minute hike to the campsite. From there to the Paine Run Trail/Trayfoot Mountain Trail intersection is roughly 0.3 miles. You can read about our trip report at: https://travel2walk.com/2019/07/07/virginia-hikes-blackrock-trayfoot-mountain-paines-run-loop-june-22-2019/. It was overcast, but cool and pleasant for hiking. We begain the hike at the Blackrock parking lot. Pro tip: Make the trip down to the hut on a hot day to soak your hat and shirt in the spring. Watch Queue Queue. Located at Milepost 84.4 on scenic Skyline Drive, it is an extremely accessible and easy hike. Lots of ticks, poison ivy, and horse flies. Hiking in Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia and North Carolina, including the Shenandoah National Park, George Washington National Forest, Jefferson National Forest, Monongahela National Forest and many state parks. At this time of year the water level is lower, so the couple stream crossings were very easy. Every year, thousands of people attempt to thru-hike the entire trail. The views from the rocky, sun-drenched summit are simply incredible, stretching over the surrounding Plott Balsam range to the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway and eastern summits of the Great Smoky Mountains. Just before dinner we were visited by a very large bear from the ridge to the south. Only one other car today though. With the trees not yet leafed out this was a very nice hike, with Blackrock Summmit being a highlight. If you plan on completing the hike during the weekend, be sure to get an early start as this trail is a popular one. The solitude quotient was very good (although we started at 7:30 am on a cold, blustery day--on a nice day Blackrock will be filled with people so starting early is always a good idea). BLACKROCK EXPERT SERVICES GROUP is the global brand that unites Blackrock Expert Services, IT Group and Haberman Ilett BEYOND DISPUTE Scroll-down.  The collection of rocks can be climbed to access even better views of the surrounding area. The Blackrock Summit Parking Area is located on the west side of Skyline Drive at mile marker 84.8. Find an expert +44 (0)20 7836 0158. Related resources: If you’re looking for actual facts and/or useful information, visit these resources: The very informative Black Rock Forest Consortium homepage (and thanks for the sweet forest, dudes!) Posted by Jeff on Mar 11, 2012 @ 1:58 pm in Forest Hikes, Hiking, Hiking Blog, Nantahala National Forest, North Carolina, Rated Moderate Hikes | 3 comments | Last modified: July 8, 2017 . Can’t hear anything over the hiss of a backpacking stove glad the pup altered us to the bear. Instead, armed with a long-travel trail bike, I'll summit the ones I can bike down. Long uphill hike to Trayfoot Mountain. A jagged rock scramble spills down the mountainside and Saunders leads the way up. I completed this hike counter clockwise. The climb to Trayfoot summit followed the ridge line which allowed for a bit of a breeze, but would be much more picturesque when the leaves are off of the trees. There are several stream crossing along this hike and most have rocks that allow you to cross without getting wet. First of all, great website! Overall, the views from Blackrock Summit are worth the trip. View a list of our global experts Sector. No matter what your goals may be, at BlackRock… You'll want to take the spur trail right at Blackrock for the fastest route. This video is unavailable. After only 15 minutes of hiking through trees, the trail at Blackrock Summit opens wide. The trail starts off along the Appalachian Trail (white blazes) to the summit, which is only about 0.5 - 0.6 miles one-way. The Blackrock Summit Trail at Shenandoah National Park in Crozet, Virginia is an easy 1.2 mile loop hike that leads out to Blackrock Summit. Take in the panoramic 360° views and a snack, before you head back. The best views were from Blackrock and the rest was pretty much in the woods. 1.4 mph for moderate trails. We hiked this route backwards as an overnight hike so we could get to the Paine Run campsite before dark. Blackrock Summit has by far the best view in the southern district of Shenandoah National Park. Took route counter-clockwise. Explore the amazing view and the rock pile at the summit, then descend via the blue-blazed Blackrock Spur. This video is unavailable. I did see 3 different bears on this hike all along the ridge line. We suggest hiking the loop counter-clockwise, starting at Blackrock Gap. For the longer trail, the trailhead is at milepost 87.4 at Blackrock Gap(Elevation 2,320 feet). The purple-gray rocks are streaked with rusty red and covered in chalk-green lichen. At 0.7 miles from the start, there is a junction with the trail to the right leading to the Black Rock Hut 0.2 off trail (see Hiking Upward description). ****We just want to point out that you have to park at the Blackrock Gap Parking lot---NOT the Blackrock Summit lot! The Blackrock Summit TRACK Trail is a 1-mile loop with a 175-foot elevation gain to a rocky talus slope overlooking the Shenandoah Valley. By Trail Contributors: Christine and Adam Anderson. This is a short climb for about 12′ up to continue on the ridge to Blackrock. Turkey Knob and Blackrock Trails, Nantahala National Forest. The first day was sweet! Your email address will not be published. The path to the summit follows alongside the Appalachian Trail and loops around the… The route is only one mile roundtrip and involves relatively no elevation gain. View the Full Album of Photos From This Hike. Appalachian Trail: Blackrock Summit - See 192 traveler reviews, 128 candid photos, and great deals for Shenandoah National Park, VA, at Tripadvisor. Back then, I was in pursuit of my goal to complete all of the hikes in the Best Easy Day Hikes – Shenandoah National Park (Amazon link at end of post). Watch Queue Queue Day hike started from the end of Horsehead Road to the west.  Not many vantage points offer these views and even fewer showcase such a distinctive summit. This 270 degree view is a great spot in the park to watch both sunrises and sunsets. Required fields are marked *. Find the trail head at the trail information board once you park in the Blackrock Summit Parking area at milepost 85 along the Skyline Drive. There is also a picnic area and a camping area (albeit not a rustic one). Really, the only cool feature on this hike apart from some creek crossings. We continued on until we reach the next junction at about the 1.2 mile mark. Near the top, you will see a … Details: As described above, this is a short hike to amazing views in the Southern part of SNP. Blackrock Summit has spectacular views! One more short vertical 4′ to 5′ and you are at your destination. Most people access the view by a .5 mile walk from Blackrock parking area, but this route lets you spend a little more time enjoying the beautiful Appalachian Trail. Even though the junction marks the Trayfoot Mountain Trail, we continued on the AT to head for Blackrock Summit. Blackrock Mountain. View of Route, View all 11 archived reviews for the Trayfoot Mountain/Paine Run hike, 5.0 hours including 30 minutes for breaks. The loop makes a great day-hike, but it’s also an excellent one-night backpacking trip with camping options at two different locations. Blackrock summit scramble was fun and views were amazing. Fine hike if you just want to get out into the woods. In less than a quarter mile, you will come upon the summit. Take a right, continuing on the blue-blazed Trayfoot Mountain Trail. Sunday's Blackrock Summit Hike I’ve written about Blackrock Summit several times since I first discovered it back in September 2009. Sit on Blackrock (it is really a black lichen-covered stone). Directions to the Blackrock Summit Trailhead. Your email address will not be published. This challenging loop in the southern district of Shenandoah National Park isn’t as well-known as some of its neighboring hikes, but it offers a wonderful variety of scenery. All the reviews I read were spot on. The blue trail was lightly maintained as described but I would still rate it as average trail conditon overall. Blackrock Summit is a gorgeous Virginia trail that can be found within the boundaries of Shenandoah National Park. Also, the trail along Trayfoot Ridge is starting to get a little overgrown. The mountains had the very first signs of spring but the trees were still leafless so the views were still largely unobstructed. Reminded me a little of the vantage point from Spy Rock, just at a higher elevation.  The path to the summit follows alongside the Appalachian Trail and loops around the main attraction before returning to the parking lot. There are two magnificent viewpoints, a beautiful mountain stream to explore, fascinating rock formations, and solitude on some of the park’s less traveled trails.  The route is only one mile roundtrip and involves relatively no elevation gain. 1.3 mph for moderately strenuous trails. Instead of getting wet at the very beginning of my hike, I went upstream ~200 yards and found a more narrow portion of the stream I was able to cross while staying dry. The one of a kind summit consists of a giant pile of sanded, quartzite rocks. Met a very pleasant gentleman who was maintaining the stretch between Trayfoot & Blackrock, he gave us several great bear stories.  Located at Milepost 84.4 on scenic Skyline Drive, it is an extremely accessible and easy hike. Several false summits and thick overgrown trail sections. 1.2 mph for strenuous and very strenuous trails. Trayfoot, however, was very overgrown in areas with a few downed trees that are tricky to get around. The Appalachian Trial (AT) ran right along side and we got a photo at the concrete sign post and began the hike heading north towards Brown’s Gap. Gorgeous trail, interesting rocks, and tremendous views from Blackrock Summit. I grew up in Calgary and hiked some of these peaks as a child. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from April until October. We stand for racial equity Learn. I decided that I was going to have a lazy weekend and took advantage of a mostly empty shelter! If camping by the creek, be aware of cooler temperatures and more humidity---it was pretty dewey when we woke up. Note- as I was leaving every parking area was completely filled, so get there early this time of year. Trayfoot Mountain and ridge was overgrown and Paines Run Trail doesn't really stay next to the stream for it to be interesting. This mile marker is located 19 miles south of US 33 or 21 miles north of I-64. The hike summits Blackrock Mountain at 3.7 miles, scrambling up its sheer rocky top. Note: Avoid starting the hike in the valley at the Paine Run Trail trailhead on VA340. To get to this Blackrock Summit, it’s best to enter the Park from Elkton through Swift Run Gap, as the trailhead is between milepost 84 and 85 heading south.  In the coming years, these rocks will disappear and the summit will become similar to others in the region. Most know for The Pinnacle, the summit of Blackrock Mountain offers just as good of views, but at a significantly … Because of the great views and the short hike this is a VERY popular hike, and it is great for families. Blackrock Summit via Trayfoot Mountain and Appalachian Trail is a 1.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Grottoes, Virginia that offers the chance to see wildlife and is good for all skill levels. The view from Blackrock Summit was amazing. Watch Queue Queue.  The rocks range in size and many have colorful lichen growing on them. To the west of Skyline Drive, the area is developed, with a lodge, a restaurant, and a ranger station. It's a small cul-de-sac, so not too much room for parking. We went to the Summit lot and were really confused. And it doesn’t require a big climb—but it does reward hikers with big views from a summit. Blackrock Summit is a short hike, easily accessible from the Skyline Drive. From the parking lot, the trailhead begins on the white-blazed Appalachian Trail. This unique rocky outcrop exposed at the end of the trail is actually part of an ancient seabed from an ocean that even predates the Appalachians themselves. going down toward Paine Run. Pulling down into Blackrock Hut, we got set up quickly.  This family friendly detour from Skyline Drive offers stunning vistas and a great experience. The views from Blackrock Summit were amazing. The ridge walk is very nice, good views and we had beautiful light this morning. Would recommend just doing Blackrock by itself as side hike. This easy 5.1 mile hike takes you to the magnificent viewpoint at Blackrock Summit. S ituated in the far northern reaches of the Panthertown Trail System in Nantahala National Forest, Turkey Knob and Blackrock Mountain offer … They shift and tip as we climb. Big Meadows itself is a wide meadow east of Skyline Drive at an elevation of about 3500'. You will have to cross Skyline Drive again after the first 1/4 mile or so to remain on the AT. An average pace is: 1.5 mph for easiest trails. The best hiking information including GPS maps, descriptions, reviews, driving directions and pictures. That way you have Blackrock summit to look forward to towards the end of your hike. At the start of Paine Run Trail, however, there's a wide stream crossing with no rocks or fallen trees to allow for easy crossing. Look ahead with sustainability Our response to COVID-19. From the Blackrock Summit parking area, near mile 85 on Skyline Drive, follow the Appalachian Trail to the bouldery summit and gaze upon mountains to the north. I don’t know of any other spot where you can see the Shenandoah Valley so clearly, as it separates the Blue Ridge (on our side) from the Allegheny mountains along the West Virginia border.  Blackrock Summit is a talus slope created by weathering, which causes rocks to move, so climbers should be cautious. Turn left … I liked Buzzard Rock a lot as it is peaceful, small, breezy, and secluded with nice views. I parked at the cul de sac at the southern end of Horsehead Road (rte 661) and followed the continuation of the road on foot to a park entrance. He kept his distance and moved on. The BlackRock Savings Summit READ. This hike winds along a portion of the Appalachian Trail, a 2,200-mile trail from Georgia to Maine. Did see a bear on the last switchback back to the car at the Blackrock gap. Great day for a hike in SNP - park was packed but saw only a handful of folks around Blackrock Summit, and none at all on the Trayfoot or Paine Run trails, so a nice quiet day in the woods. That also makes the hike along Paine Run slightly less interesting as you don't really hear the stream or get many waterfalls. Mile - 1.45 - Reach the junction of the Blackrock Spur and the Trayfoot Mountain Trail. Of course, I passed the location of the GWNF fire I posted about last night going through Shenandoah on the way down to Elkton. Blackrock Summit is located off Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park, and offers a short, gentle incline to incredible 180 views, and a talus slope that is fun for kids and adults alike. We hiked it counterclockwise. Saw quite a few fresh horse tracks which makes me think this trail is well-traveled. Watch Queue Queue Blackrock Summit is a hidden gem in the beautiful Shenandoah National Park. During this unprecedented crisis, our conviction in our purpose – to help more and more people experience financial well-being – is stronger than ever. Blackrock is great as everyone has stated. After reaching The Trayfoot Mountain summit (which was about 7 miles in), it's all downhill. Once I got to top of Trayfoot Mountain, appeared trail maintenance was done for about a half mile (grass trimmed back?) The Blackrock Summit Hike is an easy 1 mi/1.6 km hike. Connect with an expert Search by name. This area is used as a school bus turn around and should not be used for parking. It’s only a mile long, with an option to add another .6 miles if things are going well. 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