for free!

Appalachian Trail Pike to Old Pike, MD

Guide 1 Triplog  0 Topics
  3 of 5 
no permit
22 1 0
HAZ reminds you to respect the ruins. Please read the Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979 & Ruins Etiquette
tap icons for details
Difficulty 2 of 5
Distance One Way 4.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,259 feet
Elevation Gain -190 feet
Accumulated Gain 902 feet
Avg Time One Way 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 7.71
Interest Ruins & Historic
Backpack Yes
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
feature photo
Photos Viewed All MineFollowing
22  2012-04-07 kingsnake
author avatar Guides 102
Routes 259
Photos 9,699
Trips 761 map ( 7,004 miles )
Age 60 Male Gender
Location Sunnyslope, PHX
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
Radar Map
Expand Map
Preferred May, Oct, Sep, Apr
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  5:17am - 7:14pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

No foxes in Fox Gap
by kingsnake

This is a five mile segment of the famous Appalachian Trail, which follows the South Mountain ridgeline. The trail crosses on a footbridge over I-70, passes through some guy's yard, then this segment begins across the street. I did the hike in early Spring (first week of April), so only some of the trees had begun getting leaves/blooms. Really, it more resembled a late fall/winter hike. From Spring to Fall, it will be so heavily vegetated that, in most cases, you will not be able to see far off trail.

The first half mile is a 150-foot climb up Bartman Hill, on the rockiest portion of this segment. The rest of the segment varies from wide and smooth to slightly narrow and slightly rocky. Overall, a great surface, with minimal odds of joint injury. Also, any deadfall has been cleared, so no head banging. However, I am told that Eastern Diamondbacks have been spotted on the trail. (At 30 degrees, it was too cold for them.)

You will descend Bartman Hill, re-cross Boonsboro Road, then begin a more or less steady climb up to 1500 feet, just before you descend to 1300 feet, at 2.5 miles, where a powerline cutout crosses Turner Gap (site of one of three Civil War battles on September 14, 1862.).

Immediately after Turner Gap, you will begin the steepest part of the segment, a 250-foot climb to the top of Monument Knob, which is marked by a stone observation tower that was built in 1827 in honor of George Washington. It's wide panorama made it an ideal outpost for Union signal units during the Antietam Campaign. (You can see the battlefield, some six miles southwest, from the tower top.) After enjoying the view, follow the Washington history walk down to a paved parking area. (Which has toilet and water facilities.) The trail picks up again just east of the park HQ.

You will head east for about a half mile, cross paved Monument Road, then turn south and begin another 150-foot climb, before descending 400 feet to the end of the segment on Old National Pike at Fox Gap. (Another of the September 14, 1862 battles.) There are a number of historical markers around the trailhead at Old South Mountain Inn, including the Dahlgren Chapel, built in memory of the admiral who invented the guns used by the USS Monitor. There is a water tap down the gravel road, but the only bathroom facilities I saw in the area would be at the Inn, which is only open from late afternoon on.

Finally, if you are a Civil War buff, nearby Hagerstown is a great place to base yourself out of: Gettysburg is just 60 minutes northeast, Antietam (still the bloodiest day in American history) 15 minutes south, Turner Gap, Fox Gap and Crampton's Gap 20 minutes east, and Harpers Ferry 45 minutes southeast.

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2012-04-10 kingsnake

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Connector trail - Not Applicable

    To hike
    From I-70, which runs from Baltimore to Pittsburgh: Exit Hwy 66 south. Go 1.1 miles south to the first major intersection, US 40, aka National Pike. Turn east. Go 3.25 miles east. First right, after the entrance to Greenbrier Park, just before you cross under I-70, turn south on Boonsboro Mountain Rd. The Appalachian Trail crosses the road in the first cluster of a half dozen houses.
    page created by kingsnake on Apr 10 2012 11:33 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    Avoid Heat Illness - stay cool

    end of page marker