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Old Rag Mountain,VA

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Spring in DC metro is one hell of a fun. Shenandoah National Park offers great variety of hiking trails for almost any fitness level.

After injuring my back last fall, it’s been quite a struggle to manage pain and still keep in shape. I hope all the diligent yoga, swimming and physical therapy pay off soon.

This spring I am slowly getting out on the trail. When I say slowly, I really mean it. I did Billy goat A,B and C trail couple of weeks ago. My back didn’t feel as bad, giving me encouragement to try something a bit more strenuous.

I just returned from a kick ass and really beautiful Old Rag Mountain hike in the Shenandoah NP.

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Old Rag is known for the rock scrambling that is pretty challenging and nerve-wrecking at points. If you are familiar with Billy Goat A, multiply that by 5 times for the duration, elevation, steepness, and challenge of rock scrambling.

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But, this trail is absolutely doable even if you are not in a great shape.

One thing you don’t miss on this trail is people. There are a LOT of people pretty much anytime of the day. Parking lot gets filled up by 10-ish on a nice morning.

I couldn’t really convince any of my friends to wake up early on a Saturday to go with me (You suckers !!!). So, as usual I went alone.

It took me literally 10-minutes to meet a group of awesome people to spend the rest of the 6-8 hours with. You guys rock !!

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What to pack ?

– Plenty of water. I took 3 bottles

– Lunch

– Fruit or two

– Meal bars

– Lightweight windbreaker. It gets windy at the summit.

– Sunscreen/shades/hat (I packed none of these and kinda regretted)

– A pair of thin gloves

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And yes, there were kids in our group. So, don’t you complain !!!

Logistics: For directions to the trail entrance and a map, check out this link.

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And once you reach the top, just kick back and enjoy the view. You can either chose to scramble the rock back to the parking lot, which is a 3.8 miles from the summit.

Or do what we did, which is going around the mountain by a 5.6 miles trail to make the hike a full loop. We started hiking at 10:30AM and returned at 4:30PM to the parking lot.