|Summary||Hike the toughest part of the Appalachian Trail|
|Type||Day Hike - Out and Back|
|Distance (Total)||8.0 miles / 12.9 km|
|Elevation Gain||3,198 feet / 975 meters|
|Minimum Elevation||865 feet / 264 meters|
|Maximum Elevation||4,063 feet / 1,238 meters|
|Hiking Season||- All Year Long|
|Things To See||- Mountain Views - Summit|
|Rating||Trail has not been rated.|
|Nearby Town||Montebello, Virginia, United States|
|Trail Map||Appalachian Trail Map #5 - Pedlar Ranger District|
Hike up to the Priest summit. This is the arguably the hardest section on the Appalachian Trail with a 3,000 ft vertical rise in about 4 miles. This hike is located in The Priest Wilderness and the group size is limited to 10 people.
From the trailhead at about 1000 ft of altitude follow the white blazed Appalachian Trail southbound. The trail will quickly rise along a creek. After a few miles you will reach the first overlook at 3000 ft of altitude. About a mile past that overlook you will finally reach the summit. There is no view from the summit, besides a large rock pile. Continue for a short distance until you see a rock outcrop to your right. Enjoy the westward views. If you reach the Priest Shelter you have gone too far.
Car Shuttle Option:
After reaching the summit and enjoying the view you can continue on the AT until you leave the Priest Wilderness. Take a right onto the forest road and follow this road until you reach the upper parking lot of Crab Tree Falls. These are a set of cascading falls falling about 1500 ft. From the upper parking lot follow the trail to the top of the falls. Then make your way down the falls until you reach the main parking lot at the bottom.
The Crab Tree Falls parking lot and Priest trailhead are only a few miles apart on VA 56.
|Latitude||37.8383266815 degrees / 37° 50.300' / 37° 50' 17.98"|
|Longitude||-79.0230488777 degrees / -79° 1.383' / -79° 1' 22.98"|