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McAfee Knob - Appalachian Trail
3 Photosets

2021-06-17  
2019-10-18  
2017-06-09  
mini location map2019-10-18
15 by photographer avatarDaytripper
photographer avatar
 
McAfee Knob - Appalachian TrailWestern, VA
Western, VA
Hiking avatar Oct 18 2019
Daytripper
Hiking8.80 Miles 2,030 AEG
Hiking8.80 Miles   3 Hrs   55 Mns   2.40 mph
2,030 ft AEG      15 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Have been trying to get this hike done for past 4 years but inclement weather or travel timing has been a problem, this year just beat tropical storm Nestor by a day staying by the Roanoke airport on the way to Blacksburg. From the airport here a 20 minute drive on I-581 and I-81 to exit for Rt. 311 brings you to the trailhead on the left side of the busy road. After carefully crossing the busy road an initial steep portion of . 3 miles brings you to a info kiosk . At this point there is also an intersection with a fire road , which I took on the return. This hike has several descriptions on the internet including a Wikipedia entry and is frequently photographed including in the movie A Walk in the Woods. As described it’s a steady uphill ascent , just follow the iconic white blazes. I was carrying more weight than needed including 3 liters of water, used less than one in the 53° day, bear spray ,with the crowd on the trail including some leashed dogs any normal bear would avoid this trail, took a change of clothes too but didn’t sweat enough to need except the jacket I carried useful as there was a cold wind at the top. There was a sign for a spring at the Catawba shelter but I didn’t investigate but was informed the water is good and reliable. Your getting close to the top when you start hiking around some giant boulders. There was a little deadfall present but this heavily shaded trail is well maintained by the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club. Enjoyed the hike despite the lack of solitude , doesn’t appear leaf colors are too spectacular this year. Heed the advice about getting to the parking lot early , it seemed full when I arrived about 0900 but with some ingenious positioning it was crammed full when I returned,I guess Friday is part of the weekend now. You can shuttle from the Orange market about 4 miles back on 311 if traveling with multiple vehicles as it’s illegal to park on the road shoulder. Opened up route scout to check the mileage on the fire road return and post the route but it was acting schizophrenic, not likely poor reception because I had good phone service on the trail perhaps the phone upgrade to iOS 13?
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