Hiking Humpback Rocks in Virginia
“Great things are done when men and mountains meet.” –William Blake
Humpback Rocks is an aptly named overlook that juts out from the stunning Blue Ridge Parkway of Virginia. It is accompanied by the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitors Center, a replica of a 19th century mountain farm, and a 1-mile hike from the parking lot to the overlook. This is a must-see destination for any outdoor enthusiast, particularly with the upcoming brilliance of the fall foliage.
Begin your hike with a stop at the Visitors Center at Milepost 5.8, where you’ll find a gift shop, water, restrooms, a small museum, and visitor information about the area. A little ways up the road, you’ll find a parking lot Milepost 6, where the trail begins. Although the hike is only a mile in length, don’t be fooled by its seemingly short distance; this trail doesn’t play around! You’re given an immediate challenge as the trail abruptly ascends along a gravel path. The difficulty is lessened by the benches scattered along the sides of the trail and the man-made staircases, but your muscles will still most definitely be getting a workout.
As you continue along the path, you’ll come to an intersection about halfway to the overlook. You’ll notice another trail to your left, but continue to walk straight, following the blue blazes. At the next intersection, go left, and in a moment, you’ll find yourself on top of the world with some extraordinary views of the Shenandoah Valley. Book your room at Afton Mountain Bed & Breakfast, and bring your hiking boots for a nearby, outdoors adventure.
Photo by Tara Stoll