Event Category: Hike
Start Date: Wednesday, 3/6/2019
Start Time: 9:00 AM
Contact: John Morland
Description: On Wednesday, March 6 , the Midweek Hikers will hike do a 12 mile loop hike (shorter options possible) across the North Fork of the Shenandoah River (on a bridge) up Rhodes and Doll Ridges on a rarely traveled portion of the Tuscarora Trail (blue blazed) to the Three Top Mountain ridge of the Massanutten. After joining the Massanutten Trail (organge blaze) for a few yards we will turn left to follow the Tuscarora (blue blaze) across the crest of Three Top Mountain toward Signal Knob. We will then drop to the floor of Little Fort Valley where the Tuscarora again meets the Massanutten Trail. This time we leave the Tuscarora and turn right on thee the Massanutten(orange) until we reach the Strasburg Reservoir where we divert left across the dam to the lunch spot. After lunch we will continue on the Massanutten Trail past Powell’s Fort Camp and up the Massanutten until we reconnect with the Tuscarora and return down Rhodes and Doll Ridges to the starting point. Cumulative climb approximately 2400 feet.
A shorter alternative (approx. 10miles and 2,000 feet climb) can be hiked by going out and back to the Strasburg reservoir, avoiding the Three Top Mountain ridge. Or you could hike out and back to a lunch spot of your choosing on Three Top Mountain, 8-10 miles and 1300 or so cumulative climb, depending upon where you turn back.
Because the beginning portion of the Tuscarora traverses private farm land we need to be particularly respectful of the farming operations. Please observe the following:
1. No pets.
2. Follow the Blue Blazes through the farm.
3. Carefully close and secure any field gates that you open.
4. There is no parking lot at the trailhead. (see Directions below)
Carpools leave Fair Oaks Mall or the Centreville commuter lot at 7:30-am. Meet at the Trailhead at 9:00am. The leader will be at the trailhead.
Directions to the Trailhead:
1. I-66 West toward Front Royal to I-81
2. Take Exit 1A south on I-81 toward Roanoke—Approx 9 miles
3. Take Exit 291 toward VA-651/Toms Brook.
4. Turn left off the exit ramp on VA-651/Mount Olive Road--Approx 0.8 miles until it dead ends into US 11.
5. Right on US 11 for approx 0.8 miles to the hamlet of Toms Brook.
6. Left on Creek Road in the middle of Toms Brook (Caution: The Creek Road sign is attached to a building and is hard to see. The street entering US11 from the right is Hillcrest, a different name. So the easiest thing is to turn left at the Hillcrest sign and you can then see the Creek Road sign on the building)
7. Go approx 1.8 miles on Creek Road. It becomes a dirt road and parallels the creek (ie, Tom’s Brook).
8. At 1.8 miles, Creek Road becomes Riverview Road. Park there on the side of Riverview Road.
9. The trailhead is at a private farm road about 0.2 miles straight ahead just after Riverview makes a sharp left, but the road is too narrow to park there. There is a PATC sign at the trailhead, asking hikers to stay on the trail. There is also an old blue blaze there but much faded. Please do not drive onto the private farm road.
Please call John Morland (H)703-522-3643)/ (C ) 703-731-0608, jmorland @aol.com, if you have questions.