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Veach Gap - Front Royal, Virginia


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Length Difficulty Streams Views Solitude Camping
7.0 mls
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4 hours plus a half hour for lunch
1,050 ft 
George Washington National Forest
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e.g.. 12000 Government Center Parkway 22035 or Fairfax VA
From VA678/Fort Valley Rd, turn onto VA774/Veach Gap Rd. where it crosses a small concrete bridge and becomes dirt for 0.8 miles, At the end of VA774 there will be a parking area. 38.87618, -78.37623

This is a secluded out and back hike in the Veach Gap area of the George Washington National Forest near Front Royal, VA. Most of the hike is a gradual ascent through Veach Gap, with a beautiful overlook and campsite at the high point.

Start by passing the closed gate and heading up the yellow blazed Veach Gap Trail. Cross from the right bank over the run in 1.0 miles. After crossing the run meet the intersection of the orange/blue blazed Massanutten/Tuscarora Trail in another 0.1 miles.

Turn left on the orange/blue blazed trail as it gradually ascends Little Crease Mountain. In 0.5 miles look for a trail on your right, with a small tent symbol on a tree, that leads down to a nice camping spot.

Continue up the orange/blue blazed trail for another 1.4 miles, where the trail will turn right for 0.1 miles before turning back to the left. From this point there is a nice view of the Massanutten Valley to the southwest.

Continue up the trail passing a small rockslide, and in 0.2 miles as you reach the ridge line, arrive at the first of three overlooks. The second overlook is in another 0.2 miles. The third, and most spectacular overlook, is in another 240 feet at the high point of the hike, along with a great campsite. The sunrise is fantastic as it comes over the Shenandoah National Park to the east on a clear morning.

To return just retrace the route back to Veach Gap Trail, turn right, and continue down to the parking area.

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Hiker Reviews For The Veach Gap Hike (5 Most Recent)
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By: Nate Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, March 22, 2014
This was a good hike for one of the first nice days we've had in a while. Honestly most of the trail is pretty boring, but it is peaceful. The overlook of the river at the top is very nice and the campsite looks like it would be a great place to watch the sunrise. With all of the snow melt (that is not something I've had to think of before with these trails) the streams are full, and a lot of the trail itself is under about a half inch of water.  Whoever left a notebook in a pencil box at the campsite: nice thought, but that container is not waterproof at all and the notebook is definitely wet.

By: Bill Rating: Date of Hike: Monday, October 07, 2013
Views from the ridge are very nice.  Fire damage was extensive at the ridge so the camping isn't as pleasant as it probably was a couple years ago.  Mill Run source (near the cutbacks) was dry so carry water if you are planning on camping at the top.  The camp site closer to the intersection of Veach Gap Trail and the Massanutten Trail had water 100 feet away.  Overall a nice moderate, if somewhat rocky in places, hike.

By: Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, September 07, 2013
Nice hike. The forest is just coming back after the big fire they had up here a few years back. Grade of path is not too hard and was very pleasant on a really nice day. Two words or warning. The turn off of the Veach Gap trail (yellow 'i' blaze) the the Tuscoroa (blue / red blaze) was a little tricky as there are 4 discernible trails converging there and two hard to read signs. Just go left on the trail where you can see the blue blaze. Oh, and 'tent' tree marking mentioned in the directions is oriented in such a way as you only see it when coming back down. The 'end' point at the top is a 'you'll know it when you get there' point. If you find yourself walking past the campfire circle, your going too far. On the ridge, the trail can be a little hard to see, but the maintainers have done a great job with the blaze markings.

By: Jake Rating: Date of Hike: Tuesday, August 13, 2013
This is one of my favorite hikes.  It's got plenty of streams, lots of interesting topography and wildlife, and great views at the top. Lots of bang-for-the-buck, particularly for a medium length hike.

By: Justin Rating: Date of Hike: Sunday, June 16, 2013
Normally when I am attempting to find a trail to hike I come on this website and attempt to make a decision. I try to avoid the pictures so that everything will be fresh. I probably will not do that again. I was disappointed in this trail because of its width. A pickup truck could easily fit down this trail, and that is not the kind of trail that I like to walk. I prefer single file hiking. The trail was extremely rocky and did not have very much scenery except the vistas. Granted, I do think it wold have been more enjoyable if it was not almost 90 degrees outside. You are pretty exposed on this trail. On other notes, I ran into one hiker in 4 hours on the trail so it is secluded. I spotted a turkey off the trail as well. Like other reviews, the ticks seem to be numerous on the trail. I picked off around 10 by the end of the hike. Overall, I did not think the vistas were worth the negatives of getting there.

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