Hike to the Keffer Oak on the Appalachian Trail

Newport, Virginia

4.3/5
based on 4 reviews

Details

Distance

2.6 miles

Elevation Gain

600 ft

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Description

Added by Elyse Clark

Visit this 300-year-old (60' tall) white oak tree, the second largest on the entire Appalachian Trail.

You can park your car at the small gravel lot where VA-42 and Rt. 629 intersect. Starting from the Appalachian Trail crossing at VA-42,  head north on the AT, which winds through some grass meadows. After about 0.8 miles into the hike you will cross Rt. 630 (Northside Road) on a bridge over Sinking Creek. The trail continues to the right side of the creek. 

From here it is a short 0.5 miles to the Keffer Oak. You won't miss this tree. It is 300 years old, with a circumference of 18-20 feet. There is a cleared area here with some logs to sit on and rest under the tree. 

Once finished, walk the 1.3 miles back to your car by retracing your steps south on the AT. 

*Note: For a shorter hike, park at the Rt. 630 bridge where the AT crosses Sinking Creek and head 0.5 miles north on the AT to see the Keffer Oak.  

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Features

Camping
Photography
Hiking
Easy Parking
Forest
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Did this short hike with the whole family. It’s pretty amazing and huge! It was a fun hike and a neat piece of the trail to see.

Did this trail as a run and really enjoyed it. Big, open meadows made for a relaxing run with expansive views. The tree was fun to finally see, as I'd heard it about it over the years but never saw in person.

Once we figured out which direction to go on the AT the hike was fairly nice. A long gentle field uphill followed by a shorter but steeper down before we got to the "shortcut" point (which is on rt 629 not 630). The uphill to the tree is a lot steeper than expected for a beginner hike but it isn't far to the tree which is pretty impressive after all

I love this short hike! The huge oak is surrounded by a blackberry field. There's also some logs to sit on under the oak, making it a perfect place for a picnic!

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Nearby

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Hike the War Spur Loop

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