Vacation! Shenandoah and Hilton Head

I know the blog has been silent the last week, we’ve been on a much needed vacation.

We started our vacation up in Shenandoah National Park with a couple of my friends from college.  We took advantage of the opportunity to cross off one of our Bucket List hikes – Old Rag Mountain.  This mountain isn’t all that tall, and the trail isn’t that long, but it is steep and rocky.  Shenandoah actually doesn’t allow pets on the trail because of the amount of scrambling on the trail.  It is an AMAZING hike with an amazing view.  But, be warned, it’ll kick your butt!

The park recommends you allow 7 hours for this 9 mile hike, Andrew and I finished it in just over 4.  The first 3.2 miles up Old Rag took us the same amount of time (2 hours) as the last 5.8 miles down the mountain.  The first and last 0.7 miles of trail are up a paved road from the parking lot to the trail head.  Starting about 1.5 or 2 miles in, the trail is a rock scramble, at times forcing you to pull yourself up through rock chimneys.  Once you hit the summit, though, the view is worth the work.  Of the 5.8 miles down from the summit, close to 3 miles are fire road.

After Old Rag Mountain kicked our butts, we met up with Shana and Robert at Big Meadows.  Saturday we did a short hike with Shana, Robert, and their two dogs on the Rose River Loop Trail.  We tried (and failed) to beat the rain off the trail – it started pouring on us about 1 mile from the end of the trail.  We got back to the campsite and caught a glimpse of the radar and the strong storms that were expected the rest of the night, and decided to cut the trip short.

After the weekend in Shenandoah, we headed down to Hilton Head Island to meet my parents for a few days.  We got in some good kayaking on Skull Creek.  We kept our vacation tradition and rented a tandem bike for a day to ride around the island 🙂

Also, we found out this weekend we’ll be the first non-AT thru-hikers to blog on Appalachian Trials.  Check out our first post here:

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