Climbed up the Massie Gap trail from Grayson Highlands State Park. The hike was beautiful and we enjoyed the various settings: rocks, forest, and grassland. My wife about died when she saw the wild ponies(she's been riding since she was 7). The trail was easy to follow all the way and a lot of fun. Our definite favorite HP so far.
Second on a bid through the "Southern Six-Pack." Hiked this the same day after coming down from Black Mountain, KY (which took no energy).
Massie Gap (from Grayson Highlands) to Wilburn Ridge to the summit. I took Rhododendron on the way down, which is a bit easier.
Boy is this a popular route! Negotiating the masses of relatively inexperienced backpackers may have been annoying, except it was a Saturday, so this is what you get. Also lots of people with small dogs, but at least that traffic thinned out after the first mile.
The summit may not offer much in terms of views, but the hike itself sure does.
I saw some wild ponies in the saddle (appropriately enough) between Mt. Rogers & Rhododendron Gap on my return. Adorable.
Finished in just under 3.5 hours.
My 22nd state highpoint! We hiked it from The Scales.
Set out from Massie Gap and spent about three and a half hours there and back. Great hike, despite wet, windy conditions. Rocky, with some basic scrambling in parts. Challenging enough to make it satisfying but not really difficult. Saw two groups of wild ponies grazing; was surprised at how tame they were.
Took a slight detour on a 50-mile backpacking trip from Dickie's Gap to Damascus in order to summit this mountain. Beautiful area surrounding it. Nice hike to the top. Watch out for the ponies when hiking alone. They'll gang up on you, steal your oatmeal, and shank you before you can do anything about it, but, if you give them a quick tickle and a handful of berries they'll let you ride them to the top of Mt. Rogers and points beyond. Just don't stare them in the eye.
Hiked from Massie Gap. So far, this is one of our favorites(top 5). Got to hang out with some friendly wild ponies for a while!
Great hike, lots of Appalachian thru hikers.
One of the best if not the best hikes in va. Went up with a buddy of mine, we hit the trail and made decent time. Through highland views and amazing vistas. It felt like Rohan, ponies and all. The ponies were farily tamed and friendly. The summit resembled a rainforest and its always good to be at the highest point in your state. Do it, cause you'll end up doing it again.
Felt like I was a Highlander passing through the open meadows and bald ridgetops.
Started at the Massie Gap parking area with a base temp of 28 F and sunny.
Portions of the single track trail through the rocks was frozen, with the hole area frozen along the Mount Rogers Spur Trail.
Highlight of the trek was seeing the wild horses throughout the lower portion.
Was able to find all three markers and got to see the ponies! This was a beautiful area with plenty of variety in the scenery. We took the Wilburn Ridge Trail up and the AT back down, which would be my suggestion as the Wilburn Ridge Trail involves more climbing. Also be prepared for the wind!
This was the second time that my hiking and HP buddy, Mike, and I have hiked Mount Rogers (first time was in 1994?). With the increase of technology (digital cameras, etc.), we basically decided to redo and document the 18 HP's we had already completed along the east coast. The disposable camera/photos just didn't cut it. The weather today was just perfect, not a cloud in the sky. We hiked to the summit from the trailhead at Elk Garden and noticed that a portion of the AT had been re-routed since we had visited last. This initially threw us for a loop, since we headed straight toward the open meadows (in the Rhododendron Gap area). After taking a quick break, we started thru the meadow, following the woodline, but couldn't pick up the trail. After retracing our steps, we realized that the trail cut abruptly left, a couple hundred feet prior to the meadow, and continued thru the woods. The trail then continued thru the woods, until opening with views of the meadows, a few hundred feet before the trail cut-off to the summit. Wow, what a difference in the character of the trail! While I don't mind a walk in the woods, the former route was ALOT more scenic, with views of the open meadows. Nonetheless, we still had a great time!
Foggy, Cold, and No Ponies. But I will take it
Heavy fog the entire hike from Elk Gardens. No views but a pleasant walk in the woods. No ponies but funny almost walking into a cow in the fog near the trailhead.
Climbed with wife, Jill. Rained the whole way. Boggy through the forests towards the top, and slippery going through the moss-covered scree field about halfway down.
Lots of deer and horses. Beautiful section of the AT.
The climb was a little rockier and more strenuous than I expected, taking about three hours to the summit. It was cool at the top, presaging some rain on the descent. The trails are well-marked and well-tended, and you meet some interesting folks on the AT portion. This was state highpoint #30 for me.
It got dark. There were wild horses. We lost the trail, then we lost Jay.
This was my 4th SHP out of 16 that I have done so far. This has been my favorite hike. The environment at the HP is unlike anything else on the trail. There wasn't a cloud in the sky, but ice crystals fell from the trees at the HP. I can only describe it as surreal.
Brung my sis and g/f. Amazing hike from massie gap
Beautiful hike, my favorite of the entire southeastern high points. Wild Ponies everywhere.