Hike The Priest

4.2 miles 1200 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Jess Fischer

This is a great hike with a steady, easy elevation gain over the course of 2 miles to the summit. In addition this hike is rarely crowded so you'll get the trail to yourself.

Starting at the Upper Crabtree Falls Parking area, continue up the "road" for half a mile until you come to the intersection of the Appalachian Trail. That will be the steepest part of the hike. Look for two rocks on either side of the trail with white blazes on them. Take a left up the trail and you'll see a kiosk. Keep hiking for about a mile until you see a huge rock boulder (it's seriously huge) and a sign directing you to The Priest Shelter. Take a left at this sign (don't keep going straight). Keep a keen eye out for the outlook, there is no definitive trail leading you to the outlook, rather you'll see a clearing past the trees with a bunch of rocks, about 0.3 miles from the last intersection. Sometimes people build rock cairns to signal that you've reached the outlook.

Read More

Tags

Hiking
Dog Friendly
Forest
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

PRO

🥈 Contributor

3 months ago

A Solid Workout with a View

I did the extended version of this hike along the AT which had the full 3100ft of elevation gain so if you wanted a good workout with a payoff at the end, this is it. The hike is about the same steepness all the way up so maybe about a half mile in I became used to it, found a rhythm and made my way up. At about 2000 feet in elev gain, you get an awesome view out to the east. It is a good resting spot to regain your legs for the last push up to the summit! Since it is on the AT, the trail is well maintained and isn't too rocky which was nice.

over 2 years ago

The Priest

A long an bumpy road to get to the trail head. Once you park at the trail head you’ll walk all the way up the dirt road. Then you will come to two big rocks one on the left and one on the right each has a little white dash representing the AT. Make a left at the rock on the left and you will see a trail map at this is the trail that will take you to the priest overlook. You’ll come to an intersection make a left and be on the lookout for a rock overlook on the left!

Explorer

🥇Top Contributor

almost 3 years ago

Added Coordinates to Parking Area

To the review below- The road to the trailhead is a worn-out, back road and you really need coordinates to find it. However if you do decide to follow google maps to upper crabtree falls be warned that you will be hiking thrice as long (as stated below, it'll be 11-12 miles instead of 4). The exact coordinates to the parking area are: 37.824215, -79.082182 Happy trails!

about 3 years ago

you should read this

make sure you don't use the directions on the outbound! just type "upper crabtree falls" in your maps. no hate to creator of this but went on a wild goose chase trying to find the place

🥈 Contributor

over 3 years ago

Great views along the way

Thoroughly enjoyed this hike. Plenty of views along the way, which isn't always the case in the Blue Ridge. Good choice for a less-popular hike.

Stay Nearby

Lyndhurst, Virginia

Sherando Lake Recreation Area Family Camping

Overview Sherando Lake Recreation Area's Family Campground provides an ideal camping destination. It is situated in the Blue Ridge Mountains and is known locally as the jewel of the Blue Ridge Moun...

Lyndhurst, Virginia

Sherando Lake Group Picnic Shelter

Overview Sherando Lake Group Picnic Shelter, also known as the Williams Branch Group Picnic Shelter is a part of the Sherando Lake Recreation Area. The recreation area is often referred to as the j...

Lyndhurst, Virginia

Sherando Lake Group Camp

Overview Sherando Lake Group Camp is a part of the Sherando Lake Recreation Area and is popular with family groups, Boy and Girl Scouts, church groups and other local organizations. The recreation ...

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike to Spy Rock via Cash Hollow

    The hike is part of the George Washington National Forest, and can easily be combined with nearby Crabtree Falls (300ft cascading waterfall with a hike to the top). The entire trip is 5.7 miles, and there are nice campsites at the base of the summ...

    5.7 miles 1207 ft gain

  • Camp near Crabtree Meadows in GWNF

    As stated, the campsites are free. They do not require reservations or permits and are on a first come, first served basis. Regardless of which direction you're coming from, you will be traveling on Crabtree Falls Highway until reaching Meadows La...

  • Hike Crabtree Falls

    This is an approximately 4 mile roundtrip hike. It will usually take anywhere from 1-2 hours to get up, depending on your experience and who you have with you, and about an hour down. As you come off of route 56, you will come up to the trailhead...

    4 miles 1000 ft gain

  • Photograph 20 Minute Cliff Overlook

    Located at mile marker 19 along the Blue Ridge Parkway, 20 Minute Cliff Overlook is super easy to access and has an amazing 180 degree panoramic view. Looking West over the Blue Ridge Mountains, this 2,715 foot overlook has a great view of the Pri...