Use trekking poles if you need stability for sharp inclines or descends. This canopy also makes the trail amenable to many rest stops, as taking a break in the shade is highly enjoyable. Alternatively, some backpackers decide to continue on the Appalachian Trail, as it continues north all the way to Maine. There is a gravel parking lot located on top of Catawba Mountain on Route 311. Easier than Tinker Cliffs in my opinion. Sunset is also another popular time to experience the magical aura of McAfee Knob. We anticipate it increasing in popularity as people seek to escape from the chaos and stress of modern existence. I just want to say that I have really enjoyed this Appalachian Trail sub-reddit. It is not a crowded park, like some say, there is limited parking, that’s all. Finally, we offer our thoughts on the future of McAfee Knob. The top provides some breathtaking views and I'd recommend any hiker take an opportunity to experience this trail. Many park past the enterance - about 6 miles out and take an Uber for $10. The trail leading to McAfee Knob starts where the Appalachian Trail crosses the VA-311 highway. The first is about a mile in, called John’s Spring Shelter. This one is a no-brainer. The heat can be exhausting and tire you quickly. The trailhead parking lot (Rt. McAfee Knob. Rainwater is collected from the roof and stored in a large tank. Please note that the parking lot fills up fast! We took the AT on the way there and fire road on the way back. I need to do this one again because it rained the whole time and got dark before my group got to the top. For example. Described as moderately strenuous, it is a slow and steady uphill walk up the Catawba mountain to the final viewpoint. -Maximum group size, day hikes: 25 Since this trail is a loop, hikers will travel a total of 8.8 miles. Epic views throughout in the winter with the leaves down. The second, Catawba Mountain Shelter, is about two miles in. Park rules and regulations are enforced: The views were amazing. The climb felt far less steep to McAfee Knob. The summit attracts many people throughout the year, which can create palpable energy that is practically contagious. Please leave no trace and be mindful of trash! The 8.8-mile loop trail takes most hikers around 4 to 5 hours to complete. The distance from this trailhead to the summit of McAfee Knob is about 4.4 miles. the Appalachian Trail to use a rain cistern. -Dogs must be kept on leash at all times Since McAfee Knob has drastically increased in popularity in recent years, keeping the area clean is more important than ever. Large crowds can lead to litter, loud and disruptive dogs, and general pandemonium, all of which mimic city life – precisely what many explorers are trying to escape. This is a slow and steady climb to the most photographed spot on the Appalachian Trail. It is so inspiring that many people even propose to their partner there. We decided to take the Fire Line Trail instead of the AT becuase it is much wider, it made it a lot easier to travel with two dogs - given how crowded the trail was. Homeplace Restaurant is located 1 mile “trail west.” Day hike: Second Entrance highlighting 3.7 mile stretch to McAfee Knob. The incline on this trail seemed more gradual. This time of year can present its own difficulties due to snowfall and inclement weather. The spring and fall are the peak times of the year to visit McAfee Knob due to the mild temperatures. The hike to McAfee Knob might be easy, but you will need to refuel throughout your excursion. ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - The Appachian Trail and McAfee Knob parking lot are now 100% open, according to the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club. After hitting it in bad weather I hiked it a second time to properly see it. The eponymous knob located at the summit of the trail offers such breathtaking views you won’t want to leave. Dogs can go on the trail but only when leashed. Views at Mcafee knob are worth the hike. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. For me, that is in 5-6 years. What Is Backpacking?Answer To Help You Out, Umpqua Hot Springs: A Guide to Hiking and Exploring, Ten Important Hiking Tips You Need To Know Before Your Next Journey, How to Pack a Hiking Backpack to Minimize Strain and Maximize Space, What States Does the Appalachian Trail Go Through? -No camping or campfires on McAfee Knob or Tinker Cliffs. You could park at the parking area, bring a lunch and eat at McAfee Knob, then return to your vehicle. Looking into the distance, you will suddenly realize that nature is infinitely wise and beautiful. The route will take … Appalachian Trail: McAfee Knob is a 7 mile R/T breathtaking hike - See 192 traveler reviews, 128 candid photos, and great deals for Shenandoah National Park, VA, at Tripadvisor. From the trailhead on top of Catawba Mountain, McAfee Knob is an 8.8-mile out-and-back hike northbound on the AT. This is also a very popular area to watch the sunset on a we got there at around 7 and the parking lot was starting to get full. Note: parking is limited. It sits in between Dragon’s Tooth and Tinker Cliffs, and the three views make up what’s called the … And search more of iStock's library of royalty-free stock images that features Adventure photos available for quick and easy download. McAfee Knob and the Triple Crown are part of a national park – the Appalachian National Scenic Trail – that is managed collaboratively by the National Park Service, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club. Appalachian Trail: Sinking Creek Mountain to Sarver Hollow, Carvins Cove: Hi-Dee Ho to the Gauntlet and the Horse Pen Loop, Mcafee Knob and Tinker Cliffs via the Appalachian Trail, Four Gorges to Lakeside to The Gauntlet to Hi-Dee-Hoe Loop, McAfee's Knob Trail: Catawba to Daleville, The Trough, Brushy Mountain Fire Road, and The Gauntlet Loop, Dragon's Tooth, Mcafee Knob and Tinker Cliff's, George Washington and Jefferson National Forests. The overlook provides visitors with a 270-degree panoramic view of the Catawba Valley due to being 3,200 feet above sea level. The Appalachian Trail McAfee Knob trailhead is located off of the VA311 in Salem, VA. We think McAfee Knob is well-worth the hike. “It’s a more rugged hike on the Appalachian Trail,” they said. Beautiful trail, mostly rolling up and downs, the length adds to the difficulty. Here are some things to know before you go. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from April until November. It’s an eight mile round trip hike to McAfee Knob and back, taking approximately four hours. Start of trail to McAfee Knob As you can see in the photo below, the hike up to McAfee Knob is 3.9 miles and it definitely feels that long. I may be able to get a section hike of the AT within the next couple years, though. In another setting, in this greedy world, this setup would never work. McAfee Knob Trail Length Follow the approximately 4.4 mile, white-blazed trail that gradually makes the ascent to McAfee Knob - a peak of 3,197 feet . Only 25 minutes from downtown Roanoke, its ease of access and expansive views make it a favorite day hiking destination. We did a sunrise hike and the sky was breathtaking! Current trail conditions are great - minimal mud, no snow, and some ice at the very top. If you plan on spending lots of time at the summit, perhaps to have a picnic and take pictures, this trail will probably take closer to 6 to 7 hours to complete. Otherwise, all the stream crossings were fun and the trial is gorgeous. As a result, sometimes the crowds can be loud, disturbing the quietude and peace of nature. I have not been on the AT, yet. Took us 4.5 hours round trip of around 8.2 with an hour break at the top. It is ideal to hike this on a weekday as weekends are crowded. The earlier you arrive the better as the parking area isn’t large (35-40 car capacity) and seemingly always full. I would say Tinker Cliffs was slightly more difficult because of the steep stairs. ROANOKE, Va. (Dec. 22, 2020) – One of the most famous vistas on the Appalachian Trail (A.T.), McAfee Knob, has been given additional protection with the acquisition of three tracts of land near Roanoke. McAfee Knob is one of the most photographed spots on the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) as it winds its way through Virginia. The summer can also slow your travel time on this trail. Product #: gm539338532 $ 33.00 iStock In stock Very moderate incline. But at Woods Hole, it does. Nice trail, but disagree with the Hard rating. -Trail features are those listed in the 2009 Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers’ Compaion, links take you to pages and/or pics depicting them where available.-Amenity abbreviations are as follows: S=Shelter, W=Water, L=Lodging, M=Restaurant, C=Camping, G=Groceries, O=Outfitter, Sh=Showers, Cl=Laundry Great trail with fantastic panoramic views. This is just an indication of how awe-inspiring the view is. It would be an ideal location for anyone who loved that movie or book. It is a steady climb of around 1700' in about 4.4 miles to the Knob from the VA311 parking area. Then, we discuss some common questions that hikers have. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. The 8.8-mile loop trail takes most hikers around 4 to 5 hours to complete. Pack out all trash, no trash cans provided on the trail as this trail is simply part of the Appalachian Trail (AT). The knob is located atop Catawba Mountain with an elevation of 3,197 feet and is one of the highlights of the Appalachian Trail. We went on Friday and arrived at the lot around 0930, it was never busy, when arriving nor departing. This trail sees a large number of traffic and has been having problems with rising trash, illegal camping and misuse of the area. This is an ideal time for photography. Amazing views! Required fields are marked *. A little icy at the top but sooo worth it! M cAfee Knob is one of the most photographed spots on the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) as it winds its way through Virginia. Mile 713.6. The parking lot is located on Highway 311, park and cross the road to access the trail. Winter conditions can make walking difficult even when you have snowshoes. I would rate this more as moderate and not difficult. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Experiencing large crowds in the heart of nature can be disappointing for some. The National Park … -No alcohol In addition, visitors can witness the Roanoke Valley as well as North Mountain and Tinker Cliffs. I have only hiked small segments of the Appalachian Trail, but one of the best is a short segment near Salem, Virginia that leads to McAfee Knob. McAfee Knob via Appalachian Trail is a 8.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Catawba, Virginia that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. Well marked trail and saw some minor ice patches ...will call it moderate at max for an average hiker. The peak at McAfee Knob is 3,171', giving it some of the best views in the state. In fact, the region is in the film “A Walk in the Woods,” which is based on the book by the writer-explorer Bill Bryson. It is one of the most popular hikes in southern Virginia along the Appalachian Trail. Great hike. After leaving off in Pearisburg, I hiked the highly anticipated Dragon’s Tooth, Mcafee Knob, and Tinker Cliffs, got drenched while walking the first part of the Blue Ridge Parkway, and got bested by the Priest and Three Ridges Wilderness areas. It is a special place on the trail. McAfee Knob lived up to all the hype. What’s really great about the trail is how the canopy provides shade for those on day hikes, which is an appreciated luxury during the brutal summer heat. McAfee Knob, a rock protrusion resembling a diving board, juts out from the side of Catawba Mountain high above Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains - from the rocky perch you are afforded incredible views of the Catawba and Roanoke Valleys and the chance to savor one of the finest views along the Appalachian Trail. The hike is moderately difficult with a gradual incline. Many people come to the summit to meditate early in the morning, getting there just as the sunrise is beginning. Beautiful trail. Quite a few spots for dispersed camping as well! The McAfee Knob hike on the Appalachian Trail turned out to be an awesome break from the norm near Catawba, Virginia. Thus, you should probably add a couple of hours to our estimate if you plan on hiking during the winter. The main drawback is that McAfee Knob has become very touristy in recent years. ROANOKE, Va. (Feb. 6, 2020) – One of the most iconic locations along the 2,193-mile Appalachian Trail (A.T.), McAfee Knob has become one of Central Virginia’s most defining — … Gorgeous day out. Appalachian Trail, McAfee’s Knob (twice) I was due to fly out of the US on the 10th Sept, but a bonus opportunity to explore part of the Appalachian trail came up, so I took it. I am from NE Ohio and have done local 1-3 day over-nighters in OH, PA and WV. While taking a picture here and there is certainly okay, the benefits of this region become more apparent when not filtered through your smartphone. Knob, Knob, Knobbing on Heaven’s Door: Weeks 8-10 on the Trail What a section! We went prime time fall foliage and bumped into a few along the way. You have two choices to hike the McAfee Knob Trail, the fire road of the Appalachian Trail. This area is one of the most photographed spots on the Appalachian Trail. This shelter is also notorious because it has been the on-again-off-again home for an otherwise homeless woman named Peggy who believes herself to be the deposed queen of England. 311) has limited space; DO NOT PARK on Rt. The Knob has an almost 270 degree panorama of the Catawba Valley and North Mountain to the West, Tinker Cliffs to the North and the Roanoke Valley to the East. Your email address will not be published. Note: The McAfee Knob hike is one of the most popular hikes along the entire Appalachian Trail and sees a tremendous amount of hiker traffic. 311 or the adjoining side street – YOU WILL BE TOWED. As a result, the parking lot doesn’t turn over much during the day. The Knob has an almost 270 degree panorama of the Catawba Valley and North Mountain to the West, Tinker Cliffs to the North and the Roanoke Valley to the East. Since this trail is a loop, hikers will travel a total of 8.8 miles. Camping is not allowed at McAfee Knob, though there are several campsites nearby that are suitable for campers. iStock Mcafee Knob On Appalachian Trail In Virginia Stock Photo - Download Image Now Download this Mcafee Knob On Appalachian Trail In Virginia photo now. North Mountain is also viewable to the west, the Tinker Cliffs to the north and the Roanoke Valley to the east. Definitely recommend sticking to the AT... it’s prettier with the water running off the mountain. Due to this change, the summit is often much cooler than the lower parts of the trail. The hike to McAfee Knob is 3.5 miles along the Appalachian Trail. Dry conditions no breeze and low 50s made this a super easy and fun one. The distance from this trailhead to the summit of McAfee Knob is about 4.4 miles. If you plan on spending lots of time at the summit, perhaps to have a … Very well maintained. McAfee Knob Trail is part of a trio of trails that are collectively known as the “Triple Crown.” This is because they represent one of the most stunning stretches of the Appalachian Trails. Great trail, highly recommend! Many hikers stop for water and snack breaks during the warmer temperatures, which extends the hike. It’s important to note that weather conditions influence how long it takes to hike the Trail. McAfee Knob hiking trail ends on rocky mountain terrain that sticks out on a diving-like platform into the air. Lastly, we recommend bringing several bags to store your food waste. Trail is very well maintained with a moderate amount of traffic. Many people travel here to take part in the temporary community that forms there daily. Really, the only way to avoid the crowds is to go during the winter months. B Vrtacnik / AllTrails For those looking to experience this famous view of the trail, the 7.5-mile out-and-back trail isn't easy but is by all accounts worth the effort. But the investment is usually rewarded with unprecedented views of the natural forest. McAfee Knob is located just outside of Roanoke, Virginia, and can be accessed via the Appalachian Trail. McAfee Knob is one of the most photographed points along the entire trail McAfee Knob is perhaps the most iconic geological formation along the Appalachian Trail. The purchase of nearly 600 acres of land around McAfee Knob will further protect the scenic vistas of one of the most popular spots on the Appalachian Trail, conservation groups said Tuesday. Moderately difficult hike to an absolutely beautiful view. People who visit this area of the US are stunned by the natural beauty on display. In this sense, McAfee Knob can sometimes seem like just another tourist spot spoiled by human civilization. It starts at around 2,000 feet and peaks at the knob at around 3,200 feet. The estimated elevation chart illustrates how the trail is rolling for the first two-thirds of the hike and then begins to climb at the end. Prepping You To Make The Hike, McAfee Knob is a surfboard-like rock feature that juts out from. McAfee Knob is a beautiful 8 mile round-trip hike to the summit of Catawba Mountain. If you park on the street, you will be ticketed for good reason ~ it’s a time stamp in the event you don’t return (yes they monitor the vehicles in the event someone gets lost). Hiking can be a time-consuming and sometimes strenuous activity. Towering 1,600 feet over the surrounding valley, this rocky overhang juts out from the top of Catawba Mountain and offers staggering views, which are a satisfying reward after scaling a challenging, pine-lined trail. Third Entrance (No Parking directly at trail head) – You can see the Howard Johnson Trail East. Not only is the Appalachian Trail one of the most scenic routes in the US but the McAfee Knob section is arguably one of its most famous sections. A few patches of ice but nothing bad. Nearly 600 acres of permanently protected land will be added to the area in an effort to preserve the views from McAfee Knob, improve access to the Appalachian Trail and provide greater conservation of the surrounding area. Your email address will not be published. The hike is a climb of around 1,700 feet (520 m) and about 4.7 miles (7.6 km) to the top of the Knob from the VA-311 parking area. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from April until November. This would be the ideal location for a picnic, as there are plenty of places to sit at the summit. Also, it’s icy at the top of McAfee Knob :). The well-known geographical feature rises almost 3,200 ft above the Catawba Valley and is said to be the most photographed spot along the AT, a 2,200 mile-long hiking trail that runs from Georgia to Maine. McAfee Knob is an inspiring place that can empower artists to create new works of art. The trail offers a 270-degree panorama view of the Catawba Valley. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a newbie, the McAfee Knob is a wonderful part of Virginia’s Blue Ridge. I would switch this to a moderate rating and Tinker Cliffs to hard. The Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club maintains this section of trail and volunteers regularly pack out trash and maintain campsites to keep it beautiful. It is an 8-mile round trip from the parking lot off route 311 to the summit ascending some 400 meters. On a clear … Vehicles not parked in the parking lot are subject to tow. These foods are also filling, so you won’t need to eat a lot on the trail. Social hikers will love this element, as the region is teeming with love and appreciation. There are no restroom facilities, pack accordingly. There are many resting spots and picnic tables throughout the trail. This is a very popular hike and can take anywhere from 4-6 hours to walk. A spigot just behind the shelter serves as the water source. Base elevation is the elevation given at the parking area, 2,000'. The hike to McAfee knob is located near Roanoke, Virginia. The hike totals 8.3 miles out and back hike, and it is well worth the view. Perhaps the most photographed location on the Appalachian Trail, McAfee Knob overlooks the Roanoke Valley in Virginia. There are a few creeks to cool and rinse off. There are a handful of gravel pulloffs just beyond the trailhead (0.5 miles or so) and if the lot is full, you are much better off adding ~1 mile roundtrip to your total hiking mileage by parking down the road. No photograph could possibly capture that truth. If you’re a hiker who is sensitive to large groups of people or prefers to experience nature away from all forms of society, McAfee might not be the ideal location. Many hikers claim that the summit of McAfee Knob feels like an alien world totally disconnected from planet earth. For those on day hikes, there are two main shelters you can rest at. Alternatively, some backpackers decide to continue on the Appalachian Trail, as it continues north all the way to Maine. McAfee Knob is part of what is known as Virginia's Triple Crown. McAfee Knob via Appalachian Trail is a 13.0 kilometer heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Catawba, Virginia that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. If you hike to McAfee Knob, we encourage you to minimize your usage of electronics. Once it's full, if you park in the shoulder outside the parking lot you may be towed. Before long, you will find yourself powering off your phone and venturing to the edge of the mountain. That's a big YET, because my plans are to thru-hike after retirement. We didnt end up seeing many people until the way down, it definitely got crowded on the return. Hiked on 11/29 and got started at noon and did it in 3h20m with a slow start due to our legs being right from the 3 hour car ride. McAfee Knob is a popular 8 mile hike along the Appalachian Trail (AT) in southwest VA. Usage of this section of the AT has increased dramatically in the past 6 years. If your knees bother you, you can take the fire trail (up and/or down), which does not change the distance. In this article, we discuss how long it takes to hike to McAfee Knob, a geological feature located on the Appalachian Trail. The other two trails are Dragon’s Tooth Trail and Tinker Cliffs Trail. Appalachian Trail to McAfee Knob – McAfee Knob Area, Virginia . The most crowded days are the weekends during which there is very limited parking. The hike to McAfee Knob entails a 1,700-foot elevation gain. 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