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Jawbone Overlook - New Market Gap, Virginia

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Length Difficulty Streams Views Solitude Camping
2.5 mls N/A
Hiking Time:
Elev. Gain:
2.0 hours with 1/2 hour for breaks
805 ft
George Washington National Forest
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Trailhead parking for the Jawbone Gap Trail. Do not block the gate. 38.70895, -78.55963
Crisman Hollow Road/274 is closed February 1 to April 1.

Jawbone Overlook starting from from Crisman Hollow Rd is a short hike with a big payoff, and sees very little traffic compared to other close by hikes. On a clear day the view easterly from Jawbone Overlook is spectacular. Kennedy Peak is visible to the northwest, with Duncan Knob on the southern tip of Catback Mountain to the east. Don't be surprised if you have this beautiful overlook all to yourself. Jawbone Overlook is just north of New Market Gap in the Massanutten Range, and close to the Duncan Knob and Strickler Knob hikes.

If you feel like bagging another spectacular overlook while you're in the area, as well as adding a fun rock scramble, the Gap Creek trailhead that climbs up to Duncan Knob starts only 75 yards further south on Crisman Hollow Rd.

  • Mile 0.6 - Make the first switchback, and now continue more steeply.
  • Mile 0.76 - Make a switchback to the left, then in 75 yards the blue blazed Jawbone Gap Trail makes another sharp switchback to the right and leaves the forestry road. The trail is now a narrow hiking trail and will switchback two more times then climb to the ridge and intersection of the orange blazed Massanutten and white blazed Jawbone Overlook trails.
  • Mile 1.0 - At the ridge the orange blazed Massanutten trail turns left as well as continuing straight. Turn right on the white blazed Jawbone Overlook Trail north along the ridge. The trail passes over a rocky area, then continues more steeply towards Jawbone Overlook.
  • Mile 1.25 - Arrive at the overlook. To return re-trace your route.
  • Mike 2.5 - Arrive back at the parking area on Crisman Hollow Rd.
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Hiker Reviews For The Jawbone Overlook Hike (5 Most Recent)
Review the Jawbone Overlook hike here!   Average Rating:   Share Hike: 

By: Robert Godlove Rating: Date of Hike: Monday, May 29, 2017
A break in the rain, so we picked this hike, to get a new one in, Directions are good Secluded, Small overlook, but nice view, Overall this is a good hike and secluded...prepare to see wildlife!

By: Zendog74 Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, May 27, 2017
Quick, short, but steep hike. The trail gets pretty pleasant once you make the right-hand turn and head up the ridge line. It is steep though. My wife and I hiked it and we are in shape and it still had us stopping to catch our breath once or twice.

The view up top is nice, but I would not rate it as a 5 star view. If you compare it to other similar 5 star views in the area, like Strickler Knob, or other ones down further south, like Mountain, it definitely comes up short. I'd probably rank it about a 3.

Great hike to do though if you find yourself near New Market with not much time or if you are already in the area doing Strickler or Duncan Knob and have some extra time and motivation.

By: Darby Rating: Date of Hike: Tuesday, May 16, 2017
Nice out & back for the jawbone overlook. A little buggy, but the pond was very clear and filled with aquatic life. The overlook is a bit small and rocky, so you may not want to take a large party up there, but its a great view nonetheless. Above all, a great place for some peace & quiet I didn't see a single other soul during my time there.

By: Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, April 15, 2017
What a good way to enjoy tax day. This was a nice leisure hike, with plenty of solitude (only saw one other family). The pond was very clear and the overlook gave me a lovely view east as the sun was coming up (goes great with coffee). While you're in the area, go explore Camp Roosevelt, this was the very first CCC camp.

Early April
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