Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Mount Rogers Trip - Overview

Well, my plans to post about my planned trip would have worked out fine, had I only published the post and not just saved it.  In any event, my four day backpacking trip to the Mount Rogers area is over and now is but memories - wonderful memories.  After 30 miles of hiking, most of it carrying a 40 pound plus pack, I have a few sore areas, too.

I took hundreds of photos during my trip, and it will take some time to organize, write about each day, and post it.  To get started, I will write an overview of my trip and talk about what I will be writing about in future posts.  I thought it would be fun to write about this in the form of a formal Italian dinner.  Why?  Because I am the writer, that's why!  Eventually - probably not until I go for another hike - I will have every delicious course laid out for you.  For orientation, here is a map of my route.  Each "course" is in a different color.

And here is a brief description, to whet your appetite for more, of each course:

Antipasti - Cabin Creek loop
Shown in purple near the bottom of the map, this beautiful nature trail was just under 2 miles long, and could be considered an appetizer for more to come.  With a gorgeous stream and a waterfall, it was a great start to a great trip.

Insalata - Hike Through Virginia High Country
This hike was the start of the overnight portion of the hike, and began at the green star at the bottom of the map.  The route is shown in blue, ended at the first night's campsite, and climbed to the ridge lines of Virginia's highest mountains with their incredible views.  As a bonus, I saw two wild ponies. 

Zuppa - Hike Up Mount Rogers
Near sunset on the first day, I hiked nearly a mile each way from camp up to the top of Virginia's highest peak, Mount Rogers.  There is no view from the top, as the peak is covered in dense spruce or fir forest.  On the map, this route is shown in yellow.

Primo - Hiking Through the Lewis Fork Wilderness
On Friday, the second day of the hike, we hiked along the Appalachian Trail, Mount Rogers Trail, and Lewis Fork Trail to reach the second campsite.  Unlike Thursdays wide vistas, Friday's hike (of nearly 8 miles) was mostly in beautiful forest.  The route is shown in black on the map.

Secondo - Saturday's Hike through the Little Wilson Creek Wilderness
The longest day of the trip at nearly 11 miles by my estimate, this route is shown in orange and red on the  map.  When I write the details about this day, I will explain why I used two colors on the map. The hike ended at a great campsite by Little Wilson Creek.

Dolce - Just like the desert at the end of a great Italian feast, there is something sweet about finishing a trip, as fun as it has been.  Our nearly 4 miles on Sunday completed our adventure, as we made our way - often with confusion - out of the wilderness and back to Grayson Highlands State Park.  Our route is shown on the map in violet, and ends at the red star.  I hitched a ride back to the car (where the trip began and where the green star is).  This portion of the hike was usually in thick and often beautiful forests.
This posting gives you a nice overview of the menu for a fun and successful pack trip.  In subsequent posts, one at a time, I will give you a detailed accounting, with more photographs, of each "course".


  1. Oh what beautiful places for hiking. The pictures are fabulous. I can picture myself walking along those trails. : )

    Thanks for the snake identification - I thought you would know. : )

  2. I bet you would enjoy it. I am glad that you liked the photos. I had a great time! No problem with the snake. Art