Maryland Outdoor Club
Sat, May 3 2003 - Difficult Loop Day Hike (Old Rag Mountain) (View Original Event Details)

Event Organizer(s): Scott Clark
Participants:Scott Clark, Amy Pickwick, Shuli Chiu, Ronit Fix, Mark Zawodny, Bill Evans, Young Kim, Aaron Firoved, Rebecca Firoved, christopher maxie, Adam Miller, Tina Kabuto, Kristen Buck

Write Up:
In my eyes, there is just no feeling comparable to the one you get when you hike Old Rag Mountain...sore/stiff muscles, achy bones, scapes, bruises...etc. No, really, when you get about 1 mile into the hike through the final of the five humps that make up the camel-back looking mountain, the view is absolutely breath taking (approximately 2.5 hours of good views). Your mind cannot begin to take in the reality of what you view - it is spectacular. The quiet air, cool breeze, circling birds, and the painting-like back drop of the Blue Ridge Mountains. You want to stay. It is such a distant place to that of our daily, fast-paced, often too hectic lives.

Old Rag Mountain is one of the highest peaks (3291 feet) in the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Virginia. Its bald summit commands an incredible view of the Piedmont to the east and the Shenandoah Valley to the west. This hike is not for the weak of heart, as you cover 2200 feet elevation change.

The hike starts out with about a 2 mile ascent to the beginning of the first hump. The next 1.5 miles is a fun rock scramble (up and down boulders, through cracks, and on a natural staircase about 1/2 mile from the top), giving you a true summit feeling. (Getting to the final hump and including a break for lunch - it was a 4 hour journey). After spending a long break at the peak, there is a trail that descends to a fire road that together total another 4 miles (done in about 2 hours).

The MOC gang kept quite busy telling stories, learning about one another, and even developing a couple of interesting trail names (Mule, Queen Mum, maybe more that I don't know about). Jeff probably had the best story to tell from the hike, but I think you'll have to ask him about it - he tells it best. Let's just say he had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help Young out when needing a push up to the next boulder. (During the entire rock scramble, many of the guys were showing off their abilities by making rock leaps look easy and taking advanced "short-cuts" that some of us just wouldn't even think about trying).BRBR All in all, I think everyone had a great trip. The weather turned out to be just as perfect as the group. Now, it's just time for recovery (bubble baths, aspirin, and massages all sound great).BRBR We'll definitely repeat this event again next year for those of you up for a good challenge.

--Amy Pickwick

P.S. Thank you Adam and Rebecca for your photos!

Have some photos from this event that you'd like to share in our photo album? Please forward them to Amy Lipsius at Please note that we prefer to receive the photos in approximately 640x480 or 750x500 pixels - do NOT send original high-res photos. If you have a LOT of photos, please submit up to twenty of your favorites (only) for a day event, or up to forty of your favourites for a multi-day event. Thank you.