Old Rag Mountain Hike, Shenandoah National Park

4.9
#3 of 32 in Trails in Virginia
Old Rag Mountain is a popular hiking destination with a summit elevation of, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia's Madison County, near Sperryville.In contrast to most mountains of the Blue Ridge, Old Rag has an exposed (rocky) summit.GeologyOld Rag Mountain is underlain by Old Rag Granite, named for its ubiquitous exposure on the mountain, formed during the Grenville Orogeny about a billion years ago. About 400 million years after the Grenville orogeny during the Catoctin Formation, deposition of basaltic magma occurred during the formation of the Iapetus Ocean, forming a layer of greenstone over the granite. This was followed by the Weverton Formation, Harpers Formation, and Antietam formation in which sand and rock sedimented on the ocean floor forming quartzite and sandstone deposits. Finally a period of sedimentation of shells and skeletons of foraminifera resulted in deposition of a layer of limestone. Approximately 700 million years after the Greenville Orogeny, the Iapetus Ocean began to close resulting in the Alleghenian Orogeny when the Old Rag Granite and layers of rock deposited upon it were transported westward and eventually thrust up over the limestone bed around it, forming Old Rag and the Blue Ridge Mountains.
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Old Rag Mountain Hike Reviews
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288 reviews
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  • My wife and I are in our 60's and in a little better than average shape. We like to hike, but do not get to do trails like this very often. We did this hike on a day when the temperature was in the mi...  more »
  • We (mid-thirties guy and gal) enjoyed hiking Old Rag on a Sunday morning in mid-October, but--and I'm prepared to have you think I'm a certain name TA won't let me say for writing this--we did not thi...  more »
  • Went up for my birthday and decided to do the rock scramble side. It was really rough. If you do it take a lot of breaks and water. It will take a lot out of you. The view from the top was amazing tho...  more »

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Where to stay in Shenandoah National Park

All developed accommodation in Shenandoah National Park lies on or near Skyline Drive. The park offers one lodge, one resort, and one set of cabins, all of which a private concessionaire operates. With 179 rooms, rustic cabins, multi-unit lodges, and modern suites, Skyland Resort provides the most places to turn in for the night. You can also choose one of four campgrounds, all of which remain open through spring, summer, and fall. Of these, only Matthews Campground accepts reservations; if you plan to visit the park on a summer or fall weekend, arrive early at the other campgrounds to grab a site. Plenty of inns, bed and breakfasts, resorts, motels, and hotels surround the park. Stay in the nearby college town of Harrisonburg if you're looking for a lively nighttime setting.
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47 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, popular PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 21 days in United States & Toronto BY A USER FROM BELGIUM July, teens, popular PREFERENCES: July, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, fast-paced, hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 6 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 6 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, fast-paced, hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 6 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 6 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 1 day in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Shenandoah National Park BY A USER FROM ICELAND May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
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