Tibbet Knob - GNM
Beautiful views of Trout Run Valley
Great Virginia Hiking Books!

Signal Knob - Front Royal, Virginia


Printable Topo Trail Map
   All Hikes Map
   Click for location shots
   Parking/Start location
   Hike trail
   Other trail

Length Difficulty Streams Views Solitude Camping
9.9 mls
Hiking Time:
Elev. Gain:
Links:

Resources:
5.0 hours plus a half hour for lunch
2,680 ft with two different ascents
George Washington National Forest
Printable Topo Hike Map (PDF)
Front Royal Weather Forecast
Garmin (GDB), GPS eXchange (GPX) (What's this?)
3D View of Route
From:

Signal Knob parking area on 678/Fort Valley Rd. 38.93498, -78.31996
 

The Signal Knob hike in the George Washington National Forest has spectacular views of Strausburg VA. in the Shenandoah Valley, as well as Buzzard Rock in Fort Valley to the east. Signal Knob, at 2,106ft, gets its name as both Confederate and Union troops used it as a lookout during the Civil War. The Confederate Signal Corps controlled the outlook from 1862 until August 14, 1864, when Union troops defeated the 61st Georgia Volunteer Infantry and took control of the peak.

  • Mile 0.0 - Start the hike from the right side of the Signal Knob parking area. The trail is blazed orange which designates it as part of the Massanutten Trail. Start uphill on the orange blazed trail then shortly pass an old stone house on your left, cross a small stream, then follow the trail around the eastern section of the mountain.
  • Mile 1.5 - Arrive at the Buzzard Rock Overlook. The trail will take a hairpin turn back to the south and becomes significantly more rocky. In 0.9 miles from the Buzzard Rock Overlook the trail turns back to the north passing another nice vista of Fort Valley. Continue to follow the orange blazed trail as it becomes less steep, then passes several nice camp spots just before arriving at the intersection of the Meneka Peak Trail.
  • Mile 3.4 - Pass the Meneka Peak Trail on the left, continuing on the orange blazed Massanutten Trail as it winds around the ridge to your right and passing a transmission tower in another 0.8 miles.
  • Mile 4.3 - Arrive at the Signal Knob lookout area. The lookout has some nice views north of the Shenandoah Valley and Strausburg VA. The Massanutten Trail continues as a orange blazed gravel road now descending the mountain to the intersection of the blue blazed Tuscarora Trail the crosses the road.
  • Mile 5.5 - Turn left on the blue blazed Tuscarora Trail crossing Little Passage Creek, then ascend Green Mountain/Meneka Peak where you arrive at the ridge line, and white blazed Meneka Peak Trail.
  • Mile 6.3 - Cross over the ridge and proceed downhill remaining on the blue blazed trail as it winds back and forth through the Bear Wallow area.
  • Mile 7.1 - Pass the pink blazed Sidewinder Trail on your right.
  • Mile 8.2 - Pass a white blazed connector trail for Elizabeth Furnace. Continue straight on the blue blazed Tuscarora Trail as it winds around the mountain then arrives at a flatter area close to the valley, and an intersection where the blue blazed trail turns right downhill towards Fort Valley Rd./VA678
  • Mile 9.3 - Continue straight on the orange blazed Massanutten Trail (this section was formerly the the Tuscarora Spur Trail and was reblazed in 2002) as it descends slightly, then parallels Fort Valley Rd./VA678.
  • Mile 9.9 - Arrive back on the left side of the Signal Knob parking area.
  • Flash_FP1
  • Flash_FP2
  • Flash_FP3
  • Flash_FP4
  • Flash_FP5
Calculate roughly how many calories you could burn on the Signal Knob hike:

=
Hiker Reviews For The Signal Knob Hike (5 Most Recent)
Review the Signal Knob hike here!   Average Rating:   Share Hike: 

By: Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, March 23, 2019
Fantastic hike, with amazing views and great variety of terrain. I will caution anyone hiking with full packs there is no way this loop takes five hours. We took a Crew of Scouts preparing for Philmont on this trek and subtracting meals, it still took us 6-7 hours. I suppose fit people with very light loads could do it in five, but I wouldn't plan on it.

By: Denny M Rating: Date of Hike: Wednesday, December 12, 2018
Had an enjoyable hike all to myself. Never saw another person. I think if I do it again I will back track after reaching Signal Knob Lookout, and take the Meneka Peak trail rather than the fire road that requires reclimbing the mountain. Many opportunities to look out over the valleys this time of the year.

By: Rating: Date of Hike: Sunday, October 14, 2018
Great hike. However going counter clockwise thru the loop, after the first overlook (1.5 miles) there are several rock piles across the trail and rocks off and on for the next mile or two. Be sure to wear the proper shoes and take care. The overlooks are quite spectacular. I was however disappointed at Signal Knob overlook looking west as the small Maple trees have grown to block a lot of the view that was so breathtaking just a couple of years ago. I hope the trail maintenance crew in that area can trim those back as the view really has been compromised. Saw 4 solo's and 3 pairs of hikers all day. Temps in the 50's and cloudy.

By: Jason Rogers Rating: Date of Hike: Saturday, September 22, 2018
This was a great hike that was deceptively difficult. Lots of narrow rocky paths steep inclines. We were sweating by the end.

A note of caution, shortly before the 2 mile mark there was a tree that had fallen on the trail. Because the trail is so narrow and winding up the edge of the mountain, we had no choice but to climb over it. It was unsteady, but did not slide down the mountain while I was on top of it. Hopefully it will be cleared soon, but in the meantime, I'd recommend keeping one hand on another tree, vine, or friend while clambering over it.


By: Rating: Date of Hike: Monday, July 16, 2018
A great hike with a very accessible trailhead! I did it for the second time today (having done it in December too). It is a pretty typical local mountain hike with lots of rock, good for building ankle strength. Since it is summer, the views are not as open as they are in the winter. We did not see anyone else until running into some mountain bikers late on the descent. Having a good local loop hike with good altitude gain is special. It can be done in around 3:30 with a steady pace.

    View all 153 reviews for the Signal Knob hike
Late September
Early October
PA010010.jpg (86804 bytes) PA010013.jpg (92111 bytes) PA010015.jpg (71319 bytes) PA010016.jpg (108367 bytes) PA010017.jpg (59467 bytes) PA010018.jpg (41916 bytes)
PA010020.jpg (48791 bytes) PA010021.jpg (128454 bytes) PA010022.jpg (182488 bytes) PA010024.jpg (212690 bytes) PA010025.jpg (47750 bytes) PA010026.jpg (79113 bytes)
about us | terms of use | © 2019