by Bill and Mary Burnham (Falcon Guides)
© 2013 Bill and Mary Burnham/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Great views. Long trail but very easy because of the switchbacks. Will go again when the skies are clearer.
I did this hike in Early November, about three years ago and it was a beautiful, sunny day with a nice autumn chill in the air. I started out from the parking area on Whitetop Road and I think that the round trip was only about 10 miles, so there are shorter routes to take to the summit. It was a great day hike and I would definitley do it again if I found myself in the area. I live about an 8 hour drive away...
An amazing trail for diversity of experience. I did it in late November. On the climb, saunter really, going up there was the lightest dusting of snow mingled with the mosses and amongst the trees and rockfalls. This being November I came upon two hunters. No problems. The meadows and overlooks of the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail are unique in Virginia. The summit is this moss-covered evergreen forest. No views but the sheer volume of chlorophyll almost stings. On the way down I rounded a curve and found myself within 20 feet of a group of ponies. Startling and delighting.
Incredible day hike. Don't be daunted by the length or the climb. It's a gentle one. It took me 4:45, and I did some dawdling around the meadows and summit. The trail is well-marked and clear. The only somewhat confusing point is between the AT and the horse trail, and just for a bit.
This is one of the best day hikes in the Appalachian Range. When the Rhododendron are blooming it makes it all the better and well worth the trip. There are no views from the summit of Mt. Rogers. That was very disappointing. White Top (a peak nearby) is a bald and offers great views. There are supposed to be miniature ponies at the Highlands section of the hike, but I didn't see any. Great hike.
Sign in/up to upload photos.
Keep Me Informed
Weekly newsletters, announcements and offers from Trails.com to your inbox.
We HATE spam and promise to keep your email addresses safe and secure.