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Topic: Browns Hollow/Massanutten-South TR, or In Search of the Lost Trail< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 13 2014, 3:37 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

04-13-14 – Browns Hollow-Massanutten-South Loop (AKA The Lost Trail Hike): As reported a couple of episodes ago we had tried to expand upon the Bird Knob hike by hooking up with the Browns Hollow Trail. After descending what we thought was way to far from the top of Big Mountain we reluctantly retreated causing us to add a substantial amount of mileage and elevation gain to the hike. We were pretty beat by the end of the day but promised to return to find “The Lost Trail”.

I was joined by Sixteen Penny, Single Malt, Chris and Bill. All but Single Malt were involved in the original exploration. This time I had the latest edition of PATC map H and its companion guide book as well as the appropriate waypoints loaded into my GPS. We would seek out the Browns Hollow Trail from its northern terminus. From the old visitor center we descended on the Nature Trail and then the Massanutten-South Trail. As we passed through the picnic area the Massanutten Trail turned to the left towards its terminus on U.S. 211. and, lo and behold, the pink blazed Browns Hollow Trail turned right onto an old logging road. Piece of cake! The road descended to the Run bearing the same name. Through the trees I could see the twin peaks at the end of Short Horse Mountain. According to the map we were going to make a long and gradual switchback up to their bases but the trail isn’t laid out that way at all. Instead it proceeds straight up the hollow to a saddle between Big and Short Horse Mountains, first above the west bank of the stream and then the east side. The entire ascent was on a logging road except for a section of about 0.5 miles that was recently cut out by machine. I was quite happy with the amount of waterworks we saw. There were numerous mini-falls and chutes and one thin waterfall descending from Big Mountain that was somewhere between twenty and thirty feet tall. It was hard to see its top. In 4.7 miles we we sitting at Roaring Run Gap enjoying our lunch.  

We continue on and in minutes come upon the purple blazes of the Roaring Run Trail which we had used in our aborted attempt. We turned right onto it and in minutes found ourselves at our previous stopping point. We paced ourselves and made the steep climb to the crest of Big Mountain where we took in the view of Shenandoah National Park through the trees. The last 4.7 miles was a repeat of what we completed last week: a long 0.8 mile uphill walk on gravel mountain road followed by a pleasant1.2 mile pine-lined fire road walk, a somewhat rocky ridge 0.9 mile walk to a wonderful vista topped off with a 1.5 mile descent through numerous rock gardens to our starting point. The descent wasn’t near as bad as it was last week. I enjoyed this hike so much I’m making room for it in my upcoming book.













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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 13 2014, 3:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE













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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 13 2014, 10:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Looks like a good hike in Browns Hollow; I think lately I've been preferring good streamside hikes.  I've long thought that should be a good trail even from just looking at the USGS maps.  Might have to consider that someday.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 14 2014, 12:45 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

We were puzzled by one thing. When the GHT began to follow the run the east flank of Big Mountain had trees but the ground was barren - no understory what so ever, not even briers or grass.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 22 2014, 11:57 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Details are now posted on my website.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 28 2014, 9:40 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

We did this loop yesterday based on your trip report here. Great hike! The flowers are just starting to bloom and the waterfalls were very pretty. I'll post pictures later, but I just wanted to say, thank you for sharing the trip report and details.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 29 2014, 3:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(rpcv @ Apr. 28 2014, 9:40 am)
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We did this loop yesterday based on your trip report here. Great hike! The flowers are just starting to bloom and the waterfalls were very pretty. I'll post pictures later, but I just wanted to say, thank you for sharing the trip report and details.

Did you do the long road walk or jump over to the Bird Knob Trail?

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 30 2014, 11:03 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

We did the road walk. I didn't think it was too bad. It was a bit warm since there isn't any shade, but that's all right in the spring. In the summer, it would be miserable. The anthills along that old road are crazy.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 30 2014, 11:05 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

... and they've been knocked down some because of all of the snow. They'll be a lot taller soon.

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