The weather is finally starting to drop here in the great state of Virginia which means great things for hiking. Raven Rocks, located along the Appalachian Trail, provides stunning vistas of the Shenandoah Valley. The 5.5 mile out-and-back hike is located just under 60 miles outside of the Washington, DC metro area, making it a great option for those looking to escape the city without having to travel too far.
The hike starts off right off of Route 7, where you’ll find a small parking area (when heading east on Route 7) directly in front of the trailhead. Additional overflow parking can be found on the opposite side of Route 7 (when heading west on Route 7) if the trailhead lot is full. The hike to Raven Rocks begins with a quick ascent on a well-worn trail.
As you follow the white blazes that mark the Appalachian Trail, you’ll find yourself winding up and down a number of ridges. The trail features a number of rocky areas that require a moderate level of maneuvering to cross. Prior to reaching Raven Rocks, you’ll pass a sign that marks the border of Virginia and West Virginia. The border marks the final ascent of the trek to Raven Rocks.
The view from Raven Rocks is one of the best in the area, boating a fantastic overlook of the Shenandoah Valley. The proximity of the hike to the city makes it a great trip for anyone seeking fresh air and beautiful views. For this hike, I would recommend bringing layers, water, snacks, and a camera to capture the natural beauty of Raven Rocks. I would also recommend wearing hiking boots to help you conquer the rocky part of the hike but athletic shoes will work as well. For post hike refreshments and nutrition, I highly recommend Belly Love Brewing. Happy hiking!