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This view is near the parking area at the base of the trail.
Photo Credit: guyonthego

Humpback Rocks Trail

Mile marker 5 at the northern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway
open all day but daylight hours are best
540-943-4716 1 Hour
July 2012 Summer, Fall, Spring
$0-9 Afton Virginia
Website Recreation Hiking
First review
Humpback Rocks Trail is at the northern end or beginning of the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia, depending on whether you start or end your trip here. The trail is only a mile or so, but is fairly steep and strenuous at times. The payoff is an incredible view on a nice day.

For fans of the outdoors and nature, the Blue Ridge Parkway is a compelling choice for recreation. The hiking options are extensive, from short scenic walks near the parkway to the Appalachian Trail with hundreds of miles of solitude. The Humpback Rocks Trail is one of the best short hikes on the parkway because it offers about everything one could ask for in a quick mountain jaunt: convenience, an unobstructed trail, a good workout, impressive scenery and the high likelihood of privacy.

The Humpback Rocks trailhead is an easy walk from the Humpback Rocks Visitor Center, which can provide maps and trail information. A map will be helpful if you want to walk further along the trail past the rocks or take a longer excursion on the nearby Appalachian Trail. Parking is available at the visitor center or at the base of the trailhead. The Humpback Trail ascends about 700 feet. It starts with a steep grade and ends with another one as the trail becomes more rocky. Emerging from the trees onto the Humpback Rocks is a bit like walking onto a stage from behind the curtain, you feel a sense of wonder and appreciation for the moment. The key for this trail is to pick a nice day with clear skies. It will make a huge difference in the experience. Due to the trail’s steep ascent and because there are rocks to navigate at the top, only healthy people in good shape and who enjoy a more vigorous workout should be considering this hike. If that person describes you, it’s well worth the time.
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