Humpback Rocks is a massive greenstone outcrop at 3080' located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia near the northern entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The views from the top are worth the short but steep hike that gets you there. Sitting on the rocks with the sun shining on you and a nice breeze cooling you off is a great way to take in the expansive views. To the north you can see into the southern section of Shenandoah National Park, to the east check out the patchwork of farms, to the southwest you see thick woods and mountain ridges of the George Washington National forest. There is a excellent visitors center .2 miles north of the Humpback Gap trailhead parking area. The hike to the top of Humpback Rocks is 2 miles round trip, one up and one back and gains approximately 720' on the way up. The Appalachian Trail goes threw here also. There is several miles of trails that network the area.From Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains in western North Carolina the Blue Ridge Parkway covers 469 miles. Black bears and white tail deer are common animals.
The trail head, at Humpback Gap parking area is 6 milessouth of I-64 and Rockfish Gap on the northernmost section of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Take I-64 eighteen miles west of Charlottesville to excit 19.
The trailhead elevation is approximately 2360'
There is no red tape, just park and hike.
When To Climb
You can climb Humpback Rocks year around. In the summer excpect hot and humid conditions, also bring bug spray, water and watch out for snakes and thunder storms. Fall and Spring are the best times of year for the clearest and most pleasnt conditions. Winter can be very cold, snowy and icy and the least crowded. Summer,Fall, and Spring can be crowded with hikers.
Camping is nearby in the Sherando Lake Recreation Area in the George Washington National Forest off 664 on the Blue Ridge Parkway a few miles south. Coming from the north on the AT there is a AT shelter where you could camp its called The Paul C. Wolfe shelter.
Some helpful phone #s and websites are as followed:
George Washington and Jefferson National Forests--www.southernregion.fs.fed.us/gwj
Blue Ridge Parkway info--www.nps.gov/blri
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