Added by Matt Van Swol
The Rose River Loop is one of Shenandoah National Park’s most stunning backpacking trips for rivers and small waterfalls. During the four mile hike, you’ll hike along the Rose River, the Hog Camp Branch, and then up Rose River fire road.
The trail can be found on Skyline Drive. Though it is a little challenging to locate, you should park at Fisher’s Gap Overlook (mile marker 49.4), and then walk over across the road and find the trail. You'll spot it by looking over the side of the road and then hiking down. The Rose River Loop begins to the left of the fire road (you'll come up this fire road on the way back). The trail starts at a cement pillar that is hard to miss. All in all, the hike itself is not super challenging, though the trail is very narrow on the 2 miles downhill. Once you reach the bottom of the trail, you'll see some excellent camping spots. We camped at the spot just before you cross the first bridge (see picture). The ground was flat and soft and was flanked by two streams, making it easy to access water. The hike out is a little harder, but coming up the fire road certainly helps. The elevation is only around 900ft, which is pretty good for any hike in Shenandoah, and the views of the streams are excellent! Easiest backpacking trip to do in Shenandoah by far!
- Trail Map
- Backpacking backpack
- Good hiking boots/water shoes
- Tent (or Eno)
- Water/water purifier
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
Backpacking, Camping, Fishing, Hiking, Photography
Spring, Summer, Autumn
Are we missing something?Suggest an edit
ReviewsLeave a Review
Have you done this adventure? Have something to add? You could be the first to leave a review!
More Adventures Nearby
Hike the Osmanthus Trail
Virginia / First Landing Trail Center
This loop hike is accessed from a short walk from the Bold Cypress Trail and the visitor center. There are no views along this trail but the what I enjoyed was the pine needle covered trail itself.
Hike the Riverview Trail
Virginia / York River SP Parking Area
From the parking area at the visitor center, pick up the Backbone Trail marked with gold blazes. The trails are well marked with signage and arrows.