Big Flat Mountain Loop via Appalachian Trail

On an overcast day with mist rolling through the woods, we embarked upon a ramble through Lothlorien Shenandoah National Park on Big Flat Mountain Loop.

I’m headed for a hike that’s not crowded
Without a water fountain
So come with me, we’ll go and see
The Big Flat Loop in the Mountains

Sincerest apologies to Harry McClintock

Avoiding the covid crowds, we started around 9am and succeeding in seeing few people.

We did Big Run Loop the same day, so you see both in the map below.

Total distance: 5.99 mi
Max elevation: 3315 ft
Min elevation: 2805 ft
Total climbing: 1645 ft
Total descent: -1645 ft
Average speed: 2.62 mi/h
Total time: 03:30:08
Pretty sure there are elves out here.
Such vibrant, juicy green.
The mist in the trees was beautiful.

We had an amphibian and MANY SPIDERS as companions. The spiderwebs were very impressive and all dripped with dewy jewels.

Dar surveyed her domain from atop a crag with reflecting pool.
More surveying, this time from an overlook.
Feet also surveyed the valley.
Clouds hovered over the valley and the rolling hills.
Then began descending …
The clouds are apparently protective about having the valley surveyed. STOP LOOKING AT THE VALLEY. MOVE ALONG.


Distance5.7 miles
Elevation Gain1072 feet
Moving Time2 hours, 45 minutes
Total Time2 hours, 45 minutes
Average Pace28 minutes per mile / 2.2 mph


PackCamelBak Aventura hydration pack
NavigationPhone 6 with AllTrails Pro
ShoesHoka One One Challenger ATR 5 trail running shoes
Used Poles?No
ClothesSocks: Injinji Trail Midweight Mini Crew Toesocks
Bottom: quick dry running shorts
Shirt: short sleeve wicking tee


See my current gear, clothing, and thoughts about it on the Hiking Gear page.