Austin Mountain–Furnace Mountain Loop

Grottoes, Virginia 24441

Austin Mountain–Furnace Mountain Loop

Austin Mountain–Furnace Mountain Loop Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"A strenuous but beautiful hike leads into a rugged wilderness area within the park. The Austin Mountain-Furnace Mountain area consists of a huge expanse of land.

Fortunately, many trails exist there.This trek offers solitude and views and is geologically interesting. Because of the area’s diversity, a number of possibilities exist. There are long hikes and several short ones.Time will dictate which alternative you ultimately select."

Austin Mountain–Furnace Mountain Loop Trip Reports

4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon3 Total
3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars
This trail was perfectly pleasant, but not stunning or particularly strenuous, I didn't think. Would have been nice to have a better luncheon location somewhere near the trail's highest point, but I guess I'll drop my comment card in Geology's box... This is a very nice, good-smelling, solid hike, but there are peak-ier peaks in the Park if you want great views.
5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
Agreed! I've done this trail twice. The first time, we didn't get there until 1:30 PM, and we still finished it around 7:30 PM, which was good, because the sun was just setting! The second time around, it took us longer, but we started a lot earlier. In fact, I'm going back again in October to do this trail as a backpacking trip. There are a lot of small campsites in the area around half-way through and they are near Big Run, so there's plenty of water available to top off your supply. The trail is truly strenuous, but the views as you hike the trail are worth it!
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
Wonderful trail. The strenuous rating is fitting. This is due mainly to the distance and the 2 mile climb at the end. Big Run had was definitely running!!! Each ford demanded either taking your shoes off or hiking the last 5-6 miles with wet feet. I elected to do the latter. If you are looking for a cardio workout, it can be found here! Moving at a pretty solid pace the hike was completed in 4.5 hours.

Austin Mountain–Furnace Mountain Loop Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
250 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
All day
Spring to Fall
2,500 feet
Trailhead Elevation
2,750 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