img_5316I did one of my favorite hikes yesterday – the Old Rag Mountain in the blue Ridge Mountains of the Shenandoah National Park.  The trail is very challenging but always spectacular as you rise to a 3300 foot summit (after a series of false summits and outcroppings).  For those of us who love not just hiking but geology, Old Rag is a delight. The range was formed a billion years ago with massive granite formations.  Then basaltic magma was overlaid on the granite about 400 million years ago and then a layer of greenstone formed over the granite.  There was even an ocean to add to the geology.  It makes for a tough but truly gorgeous hike.  What always impresses me is how Old Rag always presents a different face and conditions — making no two hikes likes. This was no exception.

It was very foggy for much of the day, creating a type of Monet feel on the trail.  I came close to a black bear after going slightly off trail and then almost stepped on what I believe was a large mole snake near one of the creeks.  I tend to start hikes at dawn with the sun rising.  I like the lighting and particularly the absence of other hikers.  Getting to Old Rag however can take a couple hours depending on traffic from Washington. It is worth it.  When you reach the summit, it is more than enough reward for the tough rock scramble up the trail.  (I wore my cubs hat to meditate on today’s start of the playoff games with the Giants).


Below are a few of the pictures of Old Rag in the Fall.

9 thoughts on “OLD RAG IN THE FALL”

    1. More posts on music would be appreciated though… great piece here. Thank you for the share. Better than most posts claiming to be about civil liberties, “rule of law” (for some of us), politics, and other “quirky” items.

    2. And just think, if you didn’t know Mr. Scott Joplin played the piano in one’s officer uniform one would have treated him as a criminal. It’s quite sad how much this blog cares about status more-so than human rights or even basic civil liberties.

      I wonder if Mr. Smith ever arrested any rich folk….

  1. Beautiful. I’m adding these to my screen saver collection. What are the best times of the year to visit this area?

  2. Now that’s in the public interest. Since most of us have time for several mile long hikes. Hahaha what a title. Go Giants!

  3. Nice! I am hoping to get down there in the next 2 weekends to get a hike in there. Too bad we haven’t had more rain. Most of the trees in the Alleghenies have dried up and dropped their leaves.

  4. Always enjoy these posts, JT. I can’t help but notice there has not been a peep about the Cubs. Knowing there is a rich history of superstition in baseball, I surmise that might be a reason? Although I have blasted the Cubs and Cub fans a lot over my lifetime, I hope they win. I respect and like both Epstein and Madden. Giants might be the toughest opponent. Bumgarner is a BEAST!

Comments are closed.