This rough and rocky trail is strenuous, though rewarding. The wild feel of the trail is accentuated by low amounts of visitors and the density of the woods. This is the perfect rugged trail for those seeking to get off the beaten path.
This trail has a history of frequent accidents. Cedar Run Canyon is a beautiful, narrow, rocky gorge. The trail is narrow, rough, and steep, and its surface consists mostly of rocks.
On this trail, you'll be in true wilderness. When water levels are sufficient, there are many outstanding miniature waterfalls and cascades to be viewed during this hike. At one point along the trail there is an impressive cliff on the other side of Cedar Run, named Halfmile Cliff.
There are also two modest waterfalls along this trail. The upper falls are are locally known as "the slide" and is a favorite swimming spot in the summer. The lower waterfall is located a good ways below "the slide." There is no actual trail to the lower waterfall, although it does pass fairly close to the head of the falls. It is not easily seen or heard from the trail when the trees have leaves and/or water levels are low. The best bet is to locate it by sound, and then make your way upstream to the deep pool at the base of the falls.
From either end of the trail you can connect with the White Oak Canyon to Cedar Run Loop, or you can opt to return the way you came.
Thanks to Larry W. Brown, for sharing this trail description. If you’re interested in learning more details about great hikes, weather, camping / lodging, wildlife, and scenic drives, check out the comprehensive Guide to Shenandoah National Park