Hike Humpback Rocks

2 Miles Round Trip - 800 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Humpback Gap - Search Nearby - Added by Christin Healey

Humpback Rocks is one of the most popular hikes in the area with views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah National Park.

This little hike is one of the most popular in the area, and for good reason! It's a short and steep one mile to the top, but the views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah National Park to the east, are some of the best around. It's somewhat of a tradition for students from the University of Virginia to hike up here for sunrise, but to live like a local, take a picnic and a beer from one of the many local breweries nearby and watch the sunset over the mountains. It isn't a top pick for solitude on the weekends, but on a weeknight you may find you are the only one around. You can also camp right below the summit for easy access to sunrise and sunset. Note: The Blue Ridge Parkway closes in the winter, but you can park your car where the road closes and walk to the summit, making the hike a more fun and challenging 11 miles roundtrip.

Start at the Humpback Rocks parking area right off of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The easiest way to get to this spot from Charlottesville is to take 64W and get off at exit 99 following the signs to the Parkway. From the beginning of the parkway the trailhead is another 5 miles. The trail is well marked, and it's one very steep mile to the summit. Even though it's short, it takes most people about 45 minutes to get to the top. Once you have taken in the views, you can go easy on your knees and take the longer way down, which also gives you great views to the east at times. This trail is well marked and an easy day trip from Charlottesville and Waynesboro. It is also in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but you do not need to enter Shenandoah National Park to get there.

Tags

Photography
Hiking
Easy Parking
Forest
Romantic
Scenic

Details

2 Miles
800 ft elevation gain
Out-and-Back Trail

Stay Nearby

Lyndhurst, Virginia

Sherando Lake Group Camp

Charlottesville, Virginia

Charlottesville KOA

Tours

More Tours

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Cody Cole

almost 3 years ago

Short and sweet

Did the hike to Humpback Rocks with my girlfriend and chocolate lab then looped onto the AT back to the parking area. When we first arrived the parking was full but we managed a spot in the grass. It took us about 3 hours to make the leisure loop. The rocks become very slick if it is damp or has rained recently. Hike gets heavy traffic as the day goes on. Great hike to do before heading to the nearby breweries!

Straight shot uphill

It really is a straight shot uphill but so worth the hike. There are benches along the side of the trail for you to pause and catch your breath if you need. At the summit you'll be welcomed by expansive views of the Shenandoah Valley and the mountains to the north. It's a great sunset and sunrise spot as well. Be mindful that this hike is easily accessible so it is very crowded on weekends and when the weather gets nicer!

Worth it!

Yes it's steep, but it's also short. My six year old did it with no problem. Super cool summit with awesome sunset views. Depending on how late you stay, it can get very dark in the way down as it's wooded the whole way, so be sure to bring a headlamp. Great little hike!