Backpack Rocky Mount Trail in Shenandoah National Park

Rocky Mount

This roughly 10 mile dog-friendly loop offers great views from the ridgeline and stunning wildflowers in the spring and fall colors in October and November.

The trail begin 0.1 miles north of Two Mile Run Overlook at milepost 76.2 on Skyline Drive. You can park at this overlook for the night, just make sure you fill out a (free) wilderness permit and walk the short way on Skyline Drive to the trailhead.

Immediately climb a wooded knoll before heading northeast on a ridgeline. Reach a trail junction at 2.2 miles and take a left towards the summit of Rocky Mount. At mile 3.3 there is a small trail to the left that leads out to an amazing view of the Blue Ridge and the Shenandoah River to the right.

You will summit Rocky Mount at 2,741 feet and then begin your descent on a lesser-used trail. At 4.6 miles you will reach a tributary of Gap Run and rock-hop two streams. There are good campsites on the flats of Gap Run, or you can find a good spot near the summit if you are overnighting it. Just keep in mind there are no "official" spots so you will have to get creative.

Follow the blue blazes until you reach mile 6 and and another trail signpost. At mile 7.6 you will reach the first junction in the trail where you will retrace your steps 2.2 miles back to Skyline Drive. The entire loop is 9.8 miles with 2,200' elevation gain and well marked.

Pack List

  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Pack
  • Sleeping mat
  • Water
  • Water filtration
  • Camera
  • Hiking poles
  • Snacks
  • Meals
  • Hiking shoes
Show More
RT Distance 9.8 Miles
Elevation Gain 2200 Feet
Activities Camping, Backpacking, Hiking
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Loop
Features
Dog Friendly
Forest
Scenic

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Remote, beauty in the Blue Ridge

This is a great little hike in Shenandoah, and one of the few places I know of that has a campsite with these views. The hike is pretty moderate, with the last mile being a little rough, but it's a gorgeous site when you do get to the top. There is no marker for the peak, but it's fairly obvious when you reach the top as you will begin to loose elevation fairly soon. It's true there is only one site up there, but I've never seen anyone else up there so odds are pretty good. Biggest thing to remember is you have to bring your own water.

Not Worth It

Pay attention, you might miss it. No marker for the peak. The sights were not worth it. The hike is grueling.

Meh

Can become pretty strenuous the last mile. We went to camp and there is only really one spot so if multiple people are up there to camp you might be out of luck. The views at the summit weren't really worth the work to get up there (we went when it was extremely hot which made it a bit more unpleasant).


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