North District

The North District is the northernmost district from the northern entrance near Front Royal to Thornton Gap.

Map:

Trails:

Fox Hollow Trail:

Length: 1.2 miles (loop)

Blaze: Blue (hiking only)

Difficulty: Easiest

Fox Hollow Nature Trail is an easy 1.2-mile self-guided interpretive trail.  Guides for the trail are available at the visitor centers and at the trailhead.  The trailhead is right across Skyline Drive from the Dickey Ridge Visitor Center.  Going left, to hike the circuit in a clockwise direction, the trail runs though an open wildflower meadow along Skyline Drive and then heads into the woods.  Along the way, the trail passes old rock piles, an old homestead, and a cemetery for the Fox family who had lived in the area before it was a park.

Keyser Run Fire Road:

Keyser Run Fire Road is a gated gravel road that is open to hiking.  The trail starts at the Keyser Run Trailhead off Skyline Drive at mile post 19.4.  In about a mile, the trail crosses Fourway, where Little Devil Stairs Trail splits to the left.  Continuing on, the trail goes down, roughly parallel to Keyser Run and Little Devil Stairs.  The terminus of the trail is at the Little Devil Stairs Parking at the end of Route 614.  Along the way, the trail passes the Bolen Cemetery.  This trail can be used to make a circuit hike with Little Devil Stairs Trail.

Little Devil Stairs Trail:

Little Devil Stairs Trail starts at the parking lot at the end of Route 614, right at the park boundary.  From here, the trail crosses a creek and goes through Little Devil Stairs.  There are countless stairs, stream crossings, and rock scrambles as the trail leads up through the area and then ends at the Fourway at Keyser Run Fire Road.

Traces Trail:

Length: 1.7 mile (loop)
Blaze: Blue (hiking only)
Difficulty: Easiest

Traces Trail makes a loop around the Mathews Arm Campground.  The trailhead is the parking lot at the campground registration station.  At the far end of the loop, the trail cross Mathews Arm Road.

Skyline Drive:

Milepost 18.5 - Gimlet Ridge Overlook:


Milepost 19.0 - Mount Marshall Overlook:


Milepost 19.4 - Little Hogback Overlook:


Milepost 20.0 - Little Devil Stairs Overlook: Little Devil Stairs Overlook is right past mile post 20 on the east side of Skyline Drive.  The overlook provides views into the Little Devil Stairs canyon and there is a lone dead tree standing sentinel right at the overlook.


Milepost 20.7 - Hogback Overlook:


Milepost 21.0 - Rattlesnake Point Overlook:


Milepost 22.2 - Matthews Arm Road: Leads to Mathews Arm Campground

Milepost 30.0 - Pass Mountain Overlook:

Waterfalls:

Little Devil Stairs Waterfall:

Waterfall on Little Devil Stairs is a small 12-foot waterfall on Keyser Run at the top of Little Devil Stairs.  To visit the waterfall, park at the Keyser Run Trailhead at mile post 19.4 on Skyline Drive.  Hike about a mile down Keyser Run Fire Road to Fourway and turn left on Little Devil Stairs Trail.  The waterfall will be on the left in less than a mile, just before the trail descends into Little Devil Stairs.  Alternately, you can park at Little Devil Stairs Trailhead at the end of Route 614.  Hike the Little Devil Stairs trail up to the top of Little Devil Stairs and the waterfall will be on the right, just before the trail turns left and levels off.

Overall Run Upper Falls:

Upper Overall Run Falls is a 29-foot waterfall a short ways upstream of the bigger waterfall.  Overall Run is a very low flow stream so it can dry up completely, especially in the summer or fall.  Best to visit during the spring or after heavy rain.

The waterfall can be accessed from Mathews Arm Campground.  From the parking at the campground registration station, hike the Traces Trail to Mathews Arm Trail and go left.  Follow this yellow-blazed Trail for about 1.5 miles to the end and turn left on Tuscarora-Overall Run Trail.  Go about 0.1 miles to an overlook for the Upper Falls.

Overall Run Falls:

Overall Run Falls is the highest waterfall in the park at 93 feet.  The waterfall is just about a quarter-mile downstream from Upper Overall Run Falls.  Continue on the trail a short ways to an overlook with a view of the waterfall.

During the summer, the water flow can dry up to not much more than a trickle and there's not much waterfall to see.


The overlook at the waterfall, however, has a wonderful view regardless of how the waterfall looks.

Blog Entries: