Woke up on time 6:45 AM at my hotel in Marion, VA, had breakfast at the hotel and hit the road. I got to the trail head by 8:15 AM, spectacular scenes, extraordinary views along the way reminiscent of Colorado much higher altitudes. Probably most underrated mountain on the east coast. Going up the sceneries are more rewarding than Mt Mitchell, NC which is the highest east of the Mississippi river.
I parked my car at Massie's gap in Grayson State Park, VA, followed the Rhododendron (blue blaze) trail for about half a mile till it intersects with the Appalachian trail then I turned left (Southbound) on the AT where it will take you outside the park. It was supposed to be 60 degrees but the wind was blowing real good especially till about 11 AM and you feel it when you are exposed on the ridge. As soon as you get on the AT, you are greeted with herds of wild ponies that are docile and fun to watch. They may
follow you for a little bit if you feed them which is not recommended by the Rangers. Stay on the AT for little over 3 miles past Thomas knob shelter then follow the sign of Mt Rogers Spruce trail to the summit of Mt Rogers.
Had only one brief break to have an apple and was back to the car by 2:35 PM. All in all good timing compared to what folks posted on the web about it being 7-7.5 hour hike.
I think it is very enjoyable hike and not strenuous given that the terrain is well marked and the elevation gain is only 1,200 ft. If you have a chance to do this hike, by all means don't hesitate. You will be glad you did.