Hike Mount Rogers

8 Miles Round Trip - 1080 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Mount Rogers Parking Area - Search Nearby - Added by Christin Healey

This trail is also the highest point in Virginia, and because of wildfires, it is all big skies and pine trees, making it feel like somewhere out west rather than Southern Virginia.

First of all, who doesn't love wild ponies!  There are tons of ponies here, and although they are wild, they are not afraid of people and you can get pretty close (just don't feed them!).  

Once you enter Grayson Highlands State Park, you will see a parking lot for Massie Gap a few miles in, park here. There is an obvious trail, the Rhododendron Trail, that you will follow for about .5 mile until you reach the AT. Turn left, follow the AT to Wilburn Ridge, go past the Thomas Knob Shelter until you reach the short spur that leads to the Mount Rogers summit. There are no real views at the summit, but plenty along the hike to get there. Round trip the hike is 8 miles.

In the springtime there are tons of rhododendron, blueberries in late summer, and fiery colors in the fall.  To top it all off, there are plenty of great campsites and shelters as well as nearby water sources.  Dogs are also welcome and from personal experience, love this hike :)  This can also be done as a day hike if you don't want to camp.


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking


8 Miles
1080 ft elevation gain
Out-and-Back Trail

Stay Nearby

Boone, North Carolina

Boone KOA

Wytheville, Virginia

Wytheville KOA

Blountville, Tennessee

Bristol / Kingsport KOA

Nearby Adventures

Photograph Wild Horses at Grayson Highlands State Park

1.8 Miles Round Trip - 306 ft gain

Hike and Fish Cabin Creek Trail

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Hike Rhododendron Trail

2.5 Miles Round Trip - 1020 ft gain

Hike Wilburn Ridge

2 Miles Round Trip - 650 ft gain

More Nearby Adventures


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Zach Hoopes

over 3 years ago

Ponies and the highest point in VA, a unique hike for sure

Just go. We got to see the herds of wild ponies three times on our day hike up and back. The scenery is some you would never imagine in Virginia. The horses manage to keep a lot of the hike well grazed leaving for countless incredible views all along the hike. The summit itself is well forested, so it doesn't have any view, but if you there you might as well make it to the highest point in VA. This hike is a must!

Dan Barr

over 3 years ago

My Go-To Backpacking Loop

I've backpacked Mt. Rogers/Grayson Highlands three different times in the past two years, and it never gets old. The scenery is spectacular, solitude is easy to find, the trail is easy to follow, and you get some of the most unique wildlife you could ask for with the herds of wild ponies on the mountain balds. I'm certain that I'll backpack Mt. Rogers again this year, and for many years to come. Whether you're a backpacking veteran or setting out on your first backpacking trip, I cannot recommend the Mt. Rogers Highlands enough.

Jake George

almost 4 years ago

Best Views On The East Coast

Amazing high country views for Virginia! Mount Roger's forest is incredible (literally looks like a forest in the North Pacific)! Beautiful wild ponies and most of them are extremely friendly. Awesome area, when the reach the top around mount Rogers you won't believe you're in Virginia with the amazing views! Must do hike if you live in or near Virginia!