hike has some of the most spectacular waterfalls in the Shenandoah National
Park. Combining two out-and-back hikes, White Oak Canyon & Cedar Run, this loop starts at the bottom of the valley and cuts over near the top of the ridge. With five major falls, numerous smaller cascades and pools, this circuit hike is one of the best.
Follow the blue blazed trail on the right side of WOC Run reaching the WOC/Cedar Run Connector Trail in 0.6 miles. Stay straight on the right side of WOC Run for another 0.7 miles, cross a small stream, then arrive the base of the first set of major falls.
Continuing uphill from the main overlook, and shortly arrive at the yellow blazed Bridge Path Trail that comes in from the right. Stay straight, then cross WOC Run in another 40 yards at the horse rail. If WOC Run is high, continue up the right side of WOC Run and cross a footbridge in 120 yards.
After crossing the run follow the wide yellow blazed WOC Fire Road/Horse Trail. In 1.6 miles the WOC Fire Road/Horse Trail will veer right. Stay left on the narrower yellow blazed trail, marked on a concrete post as "Horse Tr To Big Meadows". In 0.6 miles the horse trail intersects the blue blazed Cedar Run Trail.
Continue downward on the Cedar Run Trail for 0.5 miles where the blue blazed trail makes a sharp left to cross Cedar Run for the last time. After crossing Cedar Run follow the trail for 0.3 miles to the intersection of the WOC/Cedar Run Connector Trail. Turn right downhill on the Cedar Run Trail towards RT600, and in 0.4 miles arrive back at the WOC Trail intersection. Turn right, re-cross the steal footbridge, and arrive back at the parking area.
Interactive Hike Map BelowPrintable
Topo Hike Map (PDF)
Hike route in Drag the map with your mouse using the icon Zoom with the controls on the left
Click the icons in the map below for location shots
Calculate roughly how many calories you could burn on the White Oak/Cedar Run hike:
Reviews For The White Oak/Cedar Run Hike (5 Most Recent)
I hiked this on a beautiful Wednesday after some good rain the week before. This time I did the circuit clockwise (last time I did it as described) and I'm glad I did. I wasn't overly impressed with Cedar Run the first time, but walking up with the run in view helped me not miss falls and views that I missed last time. The water was really running and made for some impressive falls. The walk up Cedar Run is difficult and very steep in places, but stopping to take pictures gives plenty of excuses to take a break. During the walk down White Oak Canyon I watched one guy rappel down through the waterfall after the main falls, and I watched two guys free climb down the left side of the Lower White Oak Canyon falls. This is turning into one of my favorite hikes.
Date of Hike: Saturday, August 09, 2014
My husband, 2 friends, and I set out to hike this circuit hike this morning. Weather was spot on. We decided to do it clockwise, doing the cedar run side first, and I'm glad that we did. It was INTENSE getting up there, but then we were downhill longer than we were uphill. The hike took us (newbies!) 7 hours (that includes lots of pausing for food and to climb on rocks, sit by the water, soak our feet, etc.).
This hike is not easy, but we did it, and we never hike, so I definitely recommend it. Absolutely gorgeous scenery
Date of Hike: Sunday, July 27, 2014
Overall the hike was a great one...
trails were always easily visable and well marked
I arrived at the parking area at around 9:00am and there were about 6 cars total (wen i got back the parking lot was packed... 20-30 cars)
it had rainesd that night and morning so there were many standing poos of water in the midle of the trail for the first milke or so. I would deff reccoment a waterproof hiking boot. The climb was SERIOUS and i am in good shape. it will require a few rests on the way up but well worth it for the many waterfall views. the horse trail was a steady incline with not much to look at (everyones least favorite portion of the hike) and the decline on the blue trail becomes quite technical at times and would be made easier with poles
all in all this is not a beginners hike nor for people who may not be in decent shape but does provide great waterfall views
Date of Hike: Sunday, June 29, 2014
Hiked this with my daughter and her friend both 15. This hike is rated 4 it is steep and today was a bit like hiking up a Narnia scene waterfall on the trail due to all the recent rain. Great pools and falls along the way. The water is cold and refreshing. Be prepared to climb a mountain staircase.
Date of Hike: Friday, June 27, 2014
AMAZING. I did this hike starting from Skyline Dr. Going down Cedar Run trail was very rocky and I slipped in several places, be careful. Most of the way down this trail you are along a stream that just keeps getting bigger and more beautiful. Great views of waterfalls. Many places I saw groups of people playing in the falls, sliding down rocks and in one place jumping from rocks into the water. At the bottom was a nice waterfall that you could walk right into. The hike up White Oak Canyon Trail was pretty steep in places, very rocky. Also awesome views of even more waterfalls. This is now one of my favorite hikes. Took me about 6.5 hours, and this includes plenty of stops to get my heart rate back to normal. Will do this again in the winter to see the falls iced over.
Waterfalls, waterfalls, waterfalls! This has to be the most spectacular waterfall hike in Shenandoah National Park. With three sets of falls on the way up White Oak Canyon and three smaller falls heading down Cedar Run, this circuit is among the mid-Atlantic's most popular. Lots of company on the trail.
Usually, the ideal time for this hike is in early spring, but with the rain we've had in the last month, all the falls were near their best. The wildlife was also out; we came across several black snakes, this guy (vid) was a local celebrity with hikers on Saturday, and we also saw a juvenile black bear on the trail.