Camp near Crabtree Meadows in GWNF

Rate this Adventure Meadows Lane

These are free campsites provided by the National Forest Service, located next to some of the best hikes in GWNF. Within minutes of camp you'll have hiking access to the Appalachian Trail, Crabtree Falls, Spy Rock, and The Priest.

As stated, the campsites are free. They do not require reservations or permits and are on a first come, first served basis. Regardless of which direction you're coming from, you will be traveling on Crabtree Falls Highway until reaching Meadows Lane. This is a gravel access road that requires 4WD. I've read about people getting there fine in 2WD cars, but you will be driving across streams and up a bumpy narrow road through the mountains so keep that in mind.

After driving a couple miles along the road, you will start to see campsites off to the side. They are designated by a National Forest marker that indicates it's a campsite. In total there are about 12 campsites in this area. Some are bigger, so depending on your group size find the right one that works for you. 

If you continue driving along this road you will soon come to the Upper Crabtree Falls parking area. Here you will find a pit toilet that's a nice convenience to have. A little past the parking area there are a few more campsites directly next to Crabtree Meadows. If they're not already taken, I would recommend camping here. Before you get the fire roaring, grab a headlamp and go stargaze in the meadow. 

From these campsites you can walk to the Appalachian Trail, Crabtree Falls, and The Priest. Spy Rock is nearby and takes only a couple minutes driving to get there.  

Pack List

Everyone has there own set of needs for camping, but here are some of my essential and non-essential items that come with me: 

  • Food + Water
  • Shelter
  • Hygiene (hand sanitizer, toilet paper) 
  • Sleeping bag 
  • Headlamp (w/ extra batteries)
  • Cooking necessities (stove, utensils, Sriracha) 
  • ENO Hammock 
  • Bluetooth speaker 
  • Camp chair 
  • Warm socks
  • Good vibes 
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Activities Chillin, Camping, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Features
Bathrooms
Forest
Scenic

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Nearby Adventures

More Nearby Adventures

Hike The Priest

Starting at the Upper Crabtree Falls Parking area, continue up the "road" for half a mile until you come to the intersection of the Appalachian Trail. That will be the steepest part of the hike.

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Hike Crabtree Falls

This is an approximately 4 mile roundtrip hike. It will usually take anywhere from 1-2 hours to get up, depending on your experience and who you have with you, and about an hour down.

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Hike to Spy Rock

The hike is part of the George Washington National Forest, and can easily be combined with nearby Crabtree Falls (300ft cascading waterfall with a hike to the top). The entire trip is 3.

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