Riprap Trail

Crimora, Virginia 24431

Riprap Trail

Riprap Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"This series of trails crosses some of the park’s more strenuous, pristine, and inspiring features."

More Riprap Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

AMC's Best Day Hikes in The Shenandoah Valley (Appalachian Mountain Club Books)
Jennifer Adach and Michael R. Martin
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"With a swimming hole, sweeping views, and waterfalls, this valley offers some of the best hiking in the southern Shenandoah district. Many describe Riprap as one of the better hikes in Shenandoah. After doing this hike, you’d be hard pressed to disagree. Hike this in summer, when you can take advantage of a cooling break in the swimming hole—but it is all uphill from here. From the parking lot, head along the blue-blazed trail. In just a few yards, arrive at an intersection with the Appalachian Trail (AT) and turn right. The white-blazed AT heads uphill for a bit and then arrives at another intersection in 0.5 mile, this time with blue-blazed Riprap Trail. Turn left onto Riprap Trail and follow it as it dips and climbs to Calvary Rocks at 1.2 miles, giving you the first vista of the hike."

Riprap Trail Trip Reports

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Second hike on Riprap. First time I went by myself, this time with my wife. We both enjoyed all that it has to give, wooded trails, long climbs, rocky trails, streams, waterfalls, rock formations... it's all there. We enjoyed our lunch on a rock near a waterfall. Highly recommend this trail to anybody.
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I've twice hiked the loop that this trail forms with the Wildcat Ridge trail and a section of the AT, and loved it both times. The loop is 9.8 miles, and although the sign at the trailhead says it will take 8 3/4 hours to complete the loop, experienced hikers will finish in a substantially shorter period. The hike breaks down roughly into thirds: the first part is the Riprap trail itself, which meanders from the top of the ridge down into the valley below, with rock outcroppings and beautiful vistas along the way. Near the end of this section lies the clear, cool pool that those who've hiked the trail always comment upon. The second section falls along the Wildcat Ridge trail, much of which is a steep ascent. By the time you've reached the top of the ridge you're delighted to see the sign indicating the turn onto the AT. After the ascent the hike along the AT is a pleasant and refreshing cool down back to the parking area where you first entered the trail.

This trail is not for beginners, but for those who've had at least a little hiking under their belt it's a delightful way to spend a morning. I recommend it highly!
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This is a most do! We actully had heard of a designated camp sight along the trail at about the half way mark, It was on the side of the hill with level ground overlooking a small waterfall and a gorgious blue water pool!This is one of those hikes that you will continue to come back to!

Riprap Trail Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
300 feet
Elevation Gain
Several options
Trail Type
Skill Level
10 hours or overnight (backcountry permit required)
Spring to Fall
2,600 feet
Trailhead Elevation
2,900 feet
Top Elevation
Shenandoah National Park
Local Contacts
National Geographic Trails Illustrated Topographic Map 228; Map 11, Appalachian Trail and Other Trails in Shenandoah National Park, South District
Local Maps

Trail Log