Features: Birding — Fall Colors — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Dogs: No Dogs
This is the most popular trail to get to the top of Old Rag. It is steep, long and requires a lot of rock scrambling. If you get hurt here it can take hours to be rescued, so only do this hike if you are prepared.
From the parking area, follow the road about 0.8 miles to the trailhead which should be marked in blue. If you continue straight you'll go onto Weakley Hollow Fire Road
. Turn left onto the trail as it starts up a fairly gradual climb to the first viewpoint at about two miles. From here, the trail becomes rockier until the second viewpoint. After this, the hike quickly turns into more of a climb. There are often tight passages between rocks and stone staircases. If your backpack is too big it might require you to remove it in order to squeeze through the rocks.
After another mile, you'll reach the summit, which is especially fantastic in the fall. There can be rock climbers around the summit. Please do not throw things off the cliffs.
After enjoying the view, head down the southwestern side of the mountain via the various staircases to a day use shelter called Byrd's Nest.
Check out Mountain Project's Shennendoah National Park climbing beta
if you're interested in climbing in the park.
You are likely to see deer and other wildlife, as well as a steady profusion of wildflowers during the spring, summer, and fall. Watch for changes in vegetation as you gain altitude.