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Humpback Rocks

Difficult
 4.5 (45) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A steady climb from wide gravel path to narrow forest singletrack. Stunning 360 views from the top!


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Map Key

1.8

Miles

2.9

KM

Out and Back

3,185' 971 m

High

2,403' 732 m

Low

817' 249 m

Up

817' 249 m

Down

17%

Avg Grade (10°)

54%

Max Grade (28°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · Views

Overview

There's a short (< 1mi) hike up a path that starts as wide gravel and ends as narrow forest singletrack. Many natural "stairs" along the way, as well as a few man-made ones. Near the top, it intersects with the Appalachian Trail. After about 50 yards on the AT and you reach the Humpback Rocks. From the top, there is a stunning 360-degree view of the surrounding valleys.

Need to Know

No water along the way, and not much of a break in the climbing. It seems there is always a breeze at the top.

Description

Everything is very well marked. From the main parking lot, head out from the opposite corner from where you entered. The trail begins as a wide gravel path with lots of runoff breaks. There are multiple benches to stop and rest. Especially on this gravel section, the ascent can be deceptive and you can quickly tire out.

About 1/2 way up, the gravel road ends and the trail becomes a more traditional forest singletrack trail. There are a lot of small rocks used as natural stairs, and a few stairs man-made from railroad ties, as well. The trail is very obvious.

Near the very top there is a well-marked intersection with the Appalachian Trail. Turn left at this "T". About 50-100 yards up the trail is the access to the actual Humpback Rocks. The first view as you ascend the rocks is to the valley to the west, making for some stunning sunset views. If you scramble a little further up the rocks to the right or to the left (right is far easier), you can get a nearly 360-degree view of the surrounding valleys. The view alone from the top is worth every step of the hike up!!

Contacts

Land Manager: NPS - Blue Ridge

Shared By:

JT Ferrell

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 45 votes

#238

Overall
  4.5 from 45 votes
5 Star
61%
4 Star
25%
3 Star
14%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#11

in Virginia

#238

Overall
35 Views Last Month
7,265 Since Jun 18, 2015
Difficult

0%
0%
21%
8%
72%
0%

Photos

Lovely summer day on Humpback rocks.
Jul 7, 2021 near Nellysford, VA
Humpback Rocks hike
Jun 18, 2015 near Nellysford, VA
Hazy sunset.
Jun 18, 2015 near Nellysford, VA
Nice grading on the way up.
Dec 18, 2015 near Nellysford, VA
Even the kids will love this route!
Jun 18, 2015 near Nellysford, VA
Enjoy phenomenal views from Humpback Rocks.
Mar 23, 2017 near Nellysford, VA

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 58 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Nov 26, 2021
Ryan Spr
1.8mi — 1h 08m
Sep 6, 2021
Lauren Wray
Jun 5, 2021
K Kob
Nov 23, 2020
Tina Ling
1h 10m
Oct 20, 2020
Faith Elkins
The time is how long it took us to get to the summit. I don't know how long it took us to get down. — 0h 30m
Oct 19, 2020
Anthony Todd
3mi — 2h 00m
Jul 22, 2020
Chris Ferrone
Jul 15, 2020
Miho Daniels
View was awesome!! 0.8mi — 8h 58m