Mountain Bike! Virginia
by Randy Porter (Menasha Ridge Press)
© Randy Porter/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.
3 of us went down to the mountain, called ahead of time to make sure the correct trail was open. The day we got there (from NY) only one side of the trail was open (east?) The park rangers told us no problem for biking, its the same layout as the original trail on the far side of the mountain...no good..we carried our bkies for 35 miles..beautiful trail to hike and camp for a couple of days but under no circumstances bike that side of the mountain...be vary wary of the park rangers recommendations when you get down there
Bird Knob Circuit Hike
The 8.5 mile hike involved some interesting rock formations. There were balancing rocks and balanced rocks in the making. Imagination fills in the gaps as to what the rocks would have looked like without the ancient layers of lichen causing the rocks to wear a dull gray. Reds, auburns, browns and tans peep through, giving us a sense of what the landscape may have looked liked thousands of years ago before the lichens took hold.
After reaching the top of the mountain, we were delighted to find a couple of substantial rock outcroppings which offered a sweeping view of the Shenandoah Valley and mountains to the west.
The rest of the trail was relatively level except for an elevation change between two ridges at the halfway mark. I enjoyed viewing the wild azaleas which were at their peak on the ridge. They burst forth in various shades of pink. The huckleberry and blueberry bushes were in bloom as well. Within the next month or so, those tasty trailside delicacies should be available to hungry hikers.
We encountered several trail runners who were part of the 100K Massanutten Mountain Marathon.
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