Added by Brandon Dewey

Brown Mountain Overlook is an amazing place to watch the sunset in Shenandoah National Park’s Southern District, and it’s just over 10 miles from the Swift Run Gap Entrance making it super easy to get to.

At mile post 77 off of Skyline Drive, Brown Mountain Overlook offers photographers a western view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Shenandoah National Park, and the Shenandoah Valley. At 2,840 feet, Brown Mountain Overlook is one of 72 beautiful overlooks that are on Skyline Drive located in the northern part of the Southern District.  Skyline Drive is the road that winds through the heart of Shenandoah National Park, is 105 miles long, and offers great views of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains and valleys while simultaneously offering photographers the chance to glimpse the outstanding scenery of Shenandoah. The quickest way to reach this outlook is through the Swift Run Gap entrance off of Route 33 and then drive 11.4 miles south along Skyline Drive until you reach Brown Mountain Overlook, which will be on the right side.

Photographers have a clear western view of a few ridge lines which will add layers and depth to your images.  Brown Mountain Overlook’s amazing view allows photographers to capture a valley created by Big Run along with Cedar Mountain, Trayfoot Mountain to the southwest and Rockytop to the west and Rocky Mountain to the northwest. Brown Mountain Overlook is also the trailhead of the Brown Mountain Trail; hiking down this trail a few hundred yards will give photographers a great clear view to the northwest.  This is a great location to photograph Rocky Mountain and will also allow photographers to capture the sun setting behind the mountains year around.  If you follow the trail down to the “Y”  and take the left fork, the trail will lead turn southwest and is a great place to photograph some wildflowers during the spring with the beautiful mountains in the background. From the top of the overlook, there are a few trees that can be used as foreground element when you photograph Rocky Mountain.  With a trailhead at this overlook, there are plenty of parking spaces and enough room for people to spread out to photograph this amazing view. 

Read More


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Handicap Accessible


Have you done this adventure? Be the first to leave a review!

Stay Nearby

Crozet, Virginia

Loft Mountain Campground

Overview Perched on top of Big Flat Mountain, this is one of the largest campgrounds in the park. Loft Mountain is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, providing a wilderness getaway in t...

Grottoes, Virginia

Dundo Group Campground

Overview Dundo Group Campground is a beautiful campground located at milepost 83.7 along the Skyline Drive with the Appalachian Trail passing through the site. The southern end is a picnic area an...

Dyke, Virginia

The Log House

The Cabins at Chesley Creek Farm are a wonderful blend of seclusion and comfort. The cabins allow you to escape from daily life to enjoy the peace and quiet of nature. Our well-appointed cabins all...

From $202.50/night

McGaheysville, Virginia

Maple Highlands: Mountaintop Estate Near Lift!

Tucked away in a quiet residential neighborhood less than a mile from the Massanutten Resort slopes, Maple Highlands is a 4BR/4BA estate that provides a picture-perfect mountaintop hideaway.Boastin...

From $200/night

Nearby Adventures

  • Backpack Rocky Mount Trail in Shenandoah National Park

    The trail begin 0.1 miles north of Two Mile Run Overlook at milepost 76.2 on Skyline Drive. You can park at this overlook for the night, just make sure you fill out a (free) wilderness permit and walk the short way on Skyline Drive to the trailhea...

    9.8 miles 2200 ft gain

  • Hike Frazier Discovery Trail

    There are two ways to the summit: the first is a 1.3 mile loop that starts at the Loft Mountain Wayside parking lot at mile marker 79.5 off of Skyline Drive in the southern district of Shenandoah National Park.  The second way is a 3.7 mile hike o...

    1.3 miles 950 ft gain

  • Hike to Doyles Falls

    From the parking lot at MP 81.1 on the Skyline Drive, take the trailhead to the left of the sign with the trail map. Immediately you'll cross over the Appalachian Trail-stay straight on the blue-blazed trail to Doyles Falls. The trail will descend...

    3.2 miles 1190 ft gain

  • Hike to Jones Run Waterfall

    This little known waterfall is located close to the more popular waterfall, Doyles River Falls. Staring at the Jones Run parking area turn left downhill following the blue blazed Jones Run trail. After 1.7 miles you will reach the main waterfall. ...

    2 miles 800 ft gain