12 Incredible Hikes Under 5 Miles Everyone In Virginia Should Take
By Beth|Updated on September 18, 2020(Originally published September 13, 2020)
A lifelong Virginia resident, Beth loves exploring different parts of the world and currently resides in Charlottesville. She holds a degree in English Literature and one of her short stories has been featured in the Shenandoah Review. Other interests include hiking, songwriting, and spending time in the mountains.
Virginia is renowned for its state parks, national parks, and the trails that run throughout the entire state. While the idea of hiking through Virginia by means of the Appalachian Trail may sound marvelous in theory, shorter hikes are more realistic and often pack quite a punch in terms of adventure and sightseeing. Here are 12 of the best short hikes in Virginia that you will definitely want to take in the next few months. It’s time to lace up those hiking boots and start exploring!
What do you think are some of the best short hikes in Virginia? Are there any that missed this list? Be sure to share them with us in the comments below!
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Best Short Hikes In Virginia
Beth C. |September 14, 2020
What is the most beautiful trail in Virginia?
Virginia is home to countless trails, and all of them are lovely in their own way. However, many people agree that there are some trails that are simply out of this world. At the top of this list is McAfee Knob, a picturesque out-and-back trail located near Catawba. It's perhaps one of the most famous -- and most challenging -- of Virginia's hikes. If you can muster up the strength to complete this difficult 8-mile trek, you'll be rewarded with some of the most exquisite views in all of Virginia. Pro tip: if you plan on hiking McAfee Knob, be sure to hike as early as possible to avoid the crowds.
What's the hardest hike in Virginia?
Many people consider McAfee Knob to be among Virginia's hardest hikes, but it's not the only one. Old Rag is considered to be equally beautiful and equally challenging. This 10.2-mile requires at least 5 hours of strenuous hiking and rock scrambling. However, as is the case with many of Virginia's challenging hikes, the view from the top will be well worth your efforts. If you plan on summiting Old Rag, it's important that you bring enough water and food to sustain you for the entire trip.
What are the best trails in Virginia for kids?
If you're looking to go hiking with the entire family, you might be wondering which hikes in Virginia are kid-friendly. Fortunately, there are plenty to choose from! A good place to start is Shenandoah National Park, where the visitors center will outline perfect hikes for the kiddos. Other kid-friendly trails include Lewis Spring Falls Loop, Three Lakes Park, Riverbend Park, Northwest River Park, Johnson Farm and Abbott Lake, Smith Mountain Lake Community Park, Staunton River State Park, and Natural Tunnel State Park.