The 1.8 mile trail to Lower Shamokin Falls is one of our favorites, yet you will find very little information about it online!
The trailhead is easy to find at the end of a paved road (only 50 yards of gravel road), the trail is clearly marked and not steep and you can spend days trying to photograph all the waterfalls and water scenery along the way. Once you reach the main waterfalls there are at least 3 big ones to explore.
Scrambling (a short bushwack) is involved to reach the main falls, however.
Please watch the slide show below!
NOTE – If you are a visitor at Wintergreen Resort you can visit Upper Shamokin Falls then walk down the fire road to reach Lower Shamokin Falls BUT it is a boring walk. It is much more scenic to hike from the bottom as described here.
Drive south past the town of Nellysford on Nelson 151. Turn right on Old Stoney Creek Road (CR751) and follow the tarmac road for 2.1 miles to the small parking area at the trailhead. Please do not block the gate!
Walk past the gate and follow the road up to the power station then look for a footbridge (behind the building) to cross Stoney Creek. Walk around another gate.
Continue to follow the 4×4 road uphill to mile 1.25 (from the parking area) – a sign on the left for Lower Shamokin Falls. The road continues upwards towards Wintergreen Resort so do not miss the sign! From here the trail flattens out and you will reach the Falls after 0.6 miles.
To reach the main Lower Shamokin Falls, cross the creek just below the large waterfall where the trail stops. Scramble up the hill to the top of this waterfall then you will see the main waterfall a bit further upstream.
Photography here is difficult due to debris but the Falls are beautiful!
Falls on Cabin Creek in Washington County, Virginia
The Falls on Cabin Creek is a scenic roadside waterfall (actually a pretty cascade) located on private property but clearly visible from the road.
From Rich Valley Rd north-west of Abingdon, turn north on Fall Hill Road (CR 684) and the waterfall will be on your left after 1.8 miles. You can pull over on the narrow road and take a quick picture but do not linger long and please do not trespass! It is tempting to scramble down the bank to take a closer look but don’t!
Unfortunately you may find some trash at the foot of the falls. Some it are just the result of flooding but folks also use ravines to dump their old tires, appliances and furniture.
Scott’s Run Nature Preserve is home to several challenging hiking trails and a photogenic waterfall appropriately named Scott’s Run Waterfall!
The area is popular with local hikers (and their dogs) and the recommended parking lot fills early on weekends!
The 1.5 mile (return) hike has some gentle uphill sections but the trail is well-maintained and easy on the feet. You do cross Scott’s Run twice but should not get your feet wet thanks to the artificial stepping stones!
NOTE – Unfortunately the Preserve suffers from vandalism and littering. It is not uncommon to find trash and graffiti next to the waterfall which is a shame.
Located just 15 miles from the Nation’s Capital, Great Falls Park is an 800-acre haven for nature enthusiasts. The highlight is the Potomac River where it speeds up through the narrow Mather Gorge, creating a series of waterfalls and rapids that challenge even the best kayakers in the world.
This is a National Park so the normal entrance rules apply.
From the Village of Great Falls, drive east on Georgetown Pike (VA-193) for 2 miles. Turn left onto Old Dominion Drive and the entrance is about a mile down the road.
Do plan to arrive early! By 11am on most days the parking areas fill and lines are forming at the entrance gate.
From the parking area an easy flat trail takes you to the Visitor Center and three overlooks (1 mile return).
Overlook 1 puts you the closest to the rapids while overlook 3 gives you a sweeping view of the whole Gorge!
Waterfalls of the Little Stony National Recreation Trail in Scott County, Virginia
The waterfalls of the Little Stony is an iconic destination for waterfall lovers in Virginia!
You can choose between a shorter trail of 1.4 miles (return) to view all three waterfalls, or you can park one vehicle at the top parking area and hike down to a second parking area (at Hanging Rock) for a total hike of 2.8 miles.
As mentioned there are three waterfalls of note and a few small ones further downstream when the creek is running high. Most visitors are satisfied after seeing the big three, leaving the lower part of the trail for hiking enthusiasts.
While in the area, be sure to hike the short trail to a lovely viewpoint – Bear Rock – from where you can look down into the Creek area. See our trail map below.
From the town of Coeburn drive south on VA72. Turn right on SR-664 then left on FR-700 and left on FR-701. Park in the first parking area (on the left) for the Little Stony Creek area. Bathrooms are available in a 2nd parking area about 100 yards further down the road!
The trail is a very gentle downhill profile and rather easy. You will see the Upper Falls after crossing the first bridge and the Middle Falls after crossing the second Bridge. The Lower Falls are a bit further down the trail (0.7 miles).
Watch the slide show below to see the parking and the trail.
From Eagle Rock, drive north on US220 and turn left on Craig Creek Road (VA615). After 5.5 miles turn right on Roaring Run Road (VA621) and look for the entrance to Roaring Run Recreational Day Use Area on the left after 1 mile.
On the trail map below you can see the two main trails. We prefer to hike in a clockwise direction – upstream 0.6 miles to the Falls on the Streamside Trail and return via the furnace on the Woodlands Trail (1 mile).
Shortly after the 3rd bridge there is a sliding rock cascade which is great fun on a hot day! Bring your swimwear!
From the town of Victoria drive north on VA49 also known as Falls Road. Just before the bridge over the Nottoway River, turn left on Marshall Town Road and park near the dam. It is a large unpaved parking area.
Walk east past the gate towards the bridge and walk underneath to follow the trail. You may get your feet wet when the water runs high.
The trail now swings slightly away from the river. Keep on going and look left for a side trail down to the first cascade.
Return to the trail and walk uphill (again away from the river) then back down to a side trail for a different cascade. Return and continue the trail to a small waterfall at the 0.5 mile mark.
Depending on the water level, you can skip the trail and walk along the rocks all the way from the bridge to the 0.5 mile mark and beyond (we did not find anything interesting further downstream).
Falls Run Waterfall in Shenandoah County, Virginia
If you thought there are no waterfall surprises left in Virginia, think again because Falls Run Waterfall will take your breath away!
If you visit in the Spring or when the nearby creeks run high, you can stand underneath this 60-feet high waterfall and let the cool water refresh your soul like nature intended!
But, the 1.7 mile hike is steep and the trail is very rocky especially the first 0.2 miles after leaving the lower parking lot. The higher parking lot (accessible certain months when the gates are open) puts you closer to the better part of the trail but the steepness remains!
There are huge boulders at the base of the waterfall and some are very slippery. Be careful!
If you want to park closer and save 0.7 miles (making the hike 1 mile one way instead of 1.7) , it is best to call the Lee Ranger District and ask if the gates on FR252 are open BEFORE arrival. If open then you can drive up and park at the top lot (room for 10 or so vehicles) as shown on the trail map below.
We do not like surprises so we alway park at the end of VA701 (room for 2 or 3 vehicles in the lower parking area) meaning we can hike at any time! There are no gates and it is tarmac most of the way.
Regardless of your parking choice, you will head uphill on a yellow marked trail. lower parking – walk towards the house and the yellow Forest Service trail crosses Falls Run Creek to the right. No need to enter the private property! Stay on the trail until you cross FR252 then continue for 0.6 miles to the left turn (white trail) down to the waterfall
upper parking – walk towards the gate and look for the yellow trail on the right just beyond the gate. Continue for 0.6 miles and turn left (white trail) down to the waterfall
The trail down to the waterfall is also steep and a bit rough. Take it easy!
Watch the slide show below to see the trail conditions.