Parking on the VA/WV Appalachian Trail

Section 23 - Petites Gap (USFS 35) to Parkers Gap Road (USFS 812) Displayed from North to South

Maintained by:
  Natural Bridge Appalachian Trail Club http://www.nbatc.org/ b2wheels @ mindspring.com Tye River at VA 56 to Black Horse Gap U.S. 460 at the New River to Va. 611


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Mile
Marker
 
Hiker Rated
Parking Safety
Directions Comments Number of Vehicles Map   &  
Weather  
Source
0.0
Petites Gap (USFS 35)
  Poor            Great




Parking area is on north side of USFS 35, 300 feet west of Blue Ridge Parkway (Milepost 71). Further to the west USFS 35 becomes VA 781 where state maintenance begins. USFS 35 may be gated at the parkway during winter. The B marker on the attached map indicates the actual trail crossing and parking area. The A marker shows the intersection of Petites Gap Road with the Blue Ridge Parkway. The street view shows Petites Gap Road at the Parkway. At the actual trail crossing the northbound trail to Section 22 goes east (right if coming from parkway). The southbound rail to Section 2 goes left (west). 11/26/2009 6 1
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
There is room to park about 5-6 cars at the trailhead crossing. 4/5/06 5-6 cars
wahoohanger @ yahoo.com
3.3
Thunder Ridge Overlook
  Poor            Great



 
Mile 74.7 of the Blue Ridge Parkway. 3/3/06 ample parking
Parking for this overlook is at the end of a short access road from the Blue Ridge Parkway. See attached map. Marker A and the street view are at the point where the access road leaves the Blue Ridge Parkway. The B marker indicates the parking area. A trail leads a few hundred feet from the northeast corner of the parking lot north to the AT. A few feet beyond this intersection is a stone overlook with excellent views west. At the AT junction, the southbound trail is left, the northbound is right. There is also access to the trail at Mile 3.4 from the parking lot. Ample parking 1
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
3.7
Lower Blue Ridge Parkway Crossing
  Poor            Great



 
The AT crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway at mile 74.9. No parking here. See attached map. The green arrow indicates the trail crossing. Rotate the street view to the northwest to see the northbound trail. Rotate it to the south to see the southbound trail. . 11/26/09 0 1
dlcul @ conncoll.
If you really want to access the trail here, park in the Thunder Ridge Lookout parking area where there is ample parking. See Mile 3.3 incuding the attached map. Walk along parkway to reach crossing. Entrance to parking area is only 0.2 miles east of this crossing. The access road can be seen on the right side of the map attached in the previous listing. 11/26/2009
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
3.8
Hunting Creek - USFS Rd. 45
  Poor            Great



 
I have not scouted this trail or the lower trailhead. I have passed the upper trailhead. Information from AT Guide to Central Virginia. Lower trailhead is at a switchback of VA 602 (USFS 45). Approach by either VA 122, turning west on VA 602 or from the BRP at the James River Valley parking Area (Milepost 69.3) bu taking USFS 951 and going right on VA 602. This trail goes uphill meeting the AT in 2.0 miles. This intersection is only a short distance from the "Lower Blue Ridge Parkway Crossing", Mile 3.7 and thus the Thunder Ridge Ridge Overlook Parking Area (Mile 3.3). 6/16/06
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
Here is some more detail on the route from Big Island. Go south about a mile on US 501, then go right on VA 122. In 3 miles turn right at Hunting Creek Road (VA 602). In about half a mile go left to stay on VA Hunting Creek Road. Go 4 milesurther to the trailhead at a point where the road makes a sharp switchback. If you subscribe to trails.com, you can get a topographical map which shows this trail. This was used to pinpoint the trailhead which is marked by the green arrow on the attached map. Coordinates at the AT are 37.53715 -79.49601 (See http://bp2.trimbleoutdoors.com/ViewTrip.aspx?tripid=48025). Since this point is easily accessible from the Blue Ridge Parkway, this trail probably isn't all that useful if all you want is AT access. 02/02/10 Not known 1
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
5.0
Upper Blue Ridge Parkway
  Poor            Great



 
Blue Ridge Parkway mile 76.3. Blue Ridge Parkway Ranger permission must be requested to park here. 3/3/06 2
Parking at the trail crossing here is very limited at best. There is a small overlook parking area (Apple Orchard Mt. Lookout) a short distance to the south. When I hiked this section I saw two cars parked in the woods just off a fire road located on the east side of the road a short distance north of the trail crossing. See attached map. The A marker indicates the trail crossing. The street view shows the southbound A going west from the road. Rotate to the east to see the northbound trail. The B marker indicates the overlook. Click on this marker to get a street view. Rotate from southeast to northeast to see the overlook. parking. 11/26/2009 1
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
7.3
Parkers Gap Road (Sunset Field)
  Poor            Great



 
Although USFS Rd. 812 is passable by car, it is not recommended as a road approach, since it winds nearly 10 miles from VA 781 in Arnold Valley through mountainous terrain to the AT. The Parkway is the best approach. Sunset Field is 14.5 miles south of US 501 and 7.6 miles north of the point where VA 43 e4nters the Parkway from Bedford, VA. Blue Ridge Parkway - Sunset Field - mile 78.4. 3/3/2006 There is limited parking on Parkers Gap Road but ample parking at Sunset Field.
Differently park at Sunset Field and walk the 300yds. down USFS 812 to the crossing. 4/5/06
wahoohanger @ yahoo.com
An alternate approach from Sunset Field is to take the Apple Orchard Falls Trail which starts there. For a short distance this is paved. It meets the AT in 0.2 miles. Go right 0.1 miles to USFS 812 and the south end of Section 23. 11/26/2009
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
See attached map. Marker A is the trail crossing of Parker's Gap Road. The northbound trail to section 23 goes east, the southbound trail to section 24 goes west. Marker B is Sunset Field Overlook. Rotate the street view to the south to see the parking area. 11/26/2009 Very limited if any at crossing,ample at Sunset Field 1
dlcul @ conncoll.edu
7.3
Parkers Gap Road (USFS 812)
  Poor            Great



 
The AT crosses USFS 812 0.3 miles west (compass north) of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The southbound trail to Section 24 goes west towards Jennings Creek while the northbound trail goes east and starts to ascend Apple Orchard Mountain. Parking is very limited here. See the previous listing for more information about reaching this area and the parking at Sunset Field. That includes the map attached there. 02/02/10 0 to very limited at trail crossing
dlcul @ conncoll.edu

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Page last updated: 9/19/2016 3:21:47 PM