Saturday, August 18, 2007

Mary's Rock

The 3 kids and I did a trail run today up to Mary's Rock. 40 minutes up, 25 minutes down.

Mary's Rock is a rock at "nearly" the highest point on the Appalachian Trail in the state of Virginia. I believe that the highest point is just south at Hawksbill Peak. The trail runs north and south parallel to the sky line drive, which is a popular ride for folks in DC wanting to get away. The cool thing about the skyline drive is that it makes day hikes up and down the mountain to the appalachian trail possible for a very long stretch of the trail thru VA. We've done this particular hike perhaps 10 times over the past 5 years and it has definitely become a favorite. Here's how to get there...park at mile marker 33.5 on the skyline drive. If your coming from the west, I recommend going thru warrenton and jumping on 211 to cut onto the drive at about mile 32. For a day pass, you'll pay $15, but for the annual pass it's $30. They take credit cards. I recommend the annual pass. If you bike the trail with several bikes, then you can load the bikes on the car and not pay the per rider fee. From there go south, thru the tunnel on the trail to mile marker 33.5 There is a place to park on the left. The trail is about 50 ft further up the slight hill on the drive to the south. Take the trail to the top and at the top of the ridge go north to Mary's rock. On the ridge, there will be one more "T" junction...turn left and Mary's Rock will be about 100 yards up the path. REMEMBER - when you come back, you need to turn right...we missed that once and walked half way down the mountain only to figure out we had to turn around and go back up to get back to the car.


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