Hello Everyone! I just wanted to pop in here today to share some photos of our fishing scouting trip last week. It was an absolutely gorgeous day! My husband had mapped out a route that would take us to three rivers he wanted to look at. We packed a picnic, got an early start and drove through the valley east of Shenandoah NP.
Our trip took us through Front Royal, then past Sperryville to our first stop. The farmland was spectacular through this area and we had multiple views of Old Rag Mountain, which is in the park.
We crossed over the Rose River at the end of a dirt road to a parking area. From this view, the fishing is all native trout upstream. It’s stocked on the other side of the bridge and downstream.
At each place we stopped, we were not parked in the park itself, but entered it from the trailheads.
We hiked up the fire “road” so my husband could get an idea of what the river looked like. You can enter the river from the parking area or hike up to another, flatter area that had access. It was a steep hill down to the river from most of the trail that we were on. The very start of the fire road was very rocky, but then became a little bit better trail as we went up. There was also access to the Dark Hallow Falls trail from this location.
As I said, the countryside was spectacular. Beautiful rolling hills with the mountains surrounding the area. I image it will also be a pretty drive just as everything is greening up in the spring.
The next river, at even a longer road to get into but paved all the way, was the Rapidan. It was a little easier to get into the river, but the parking lot was small and was almost full when we were there during the week. My husband says this is a more popular place to fish, but he’ll definitely fish it. Again, you entered the park at the trailhead.
We didn’t even get out of the car at the third river, which was even a longer drive to get too. There were private properties all along the dirt road and you had to park almost a mile away from where you could enter the river, then you were still a little ways away from the park where you could start fishing. With other fishing to get to, this did not appeal to my husband at all.
As it was past lunch time with nowhere else to eat, we decided to go into the park for our picnic lunch. We entered the park at the Swift Run Gap Station. It was 60 degrees in the valley, but 46 when we ate lunch at the South River Picnic Area. I was glad I threw my hat and gloves in before we left and we both brought heavier jackets, just in case we needed them, which we did.
We decided to go home through part of the park since we had not driven this part of the Skyline Drive before. There was very little traffic so we felt we had the drive to ourselves most of the time. There was still snow on the ground and ice flows over the rocks. We only stopped at this one overlook, but it was a different perspective from our other previous drives. From here, you can see how the valley to the west opens up to the south.
We are looking towards the west here, over the Massanutten range and towards the Alleghanies (far range) on the Virginia and West Virginia line. You can just see the ski slopes on the Massanutten on the far left side on the third range over. I love to take drives in the winter when you can see so far. The Alleghanies are about 40-50 miles from where we were.
You can see Old Rag Mountain again in the distance with the same valley we had driven through in the morning off to the east.
And another picture of Old Rag Mountain on it’s west side. It is supposed to be a very rugged hike and then a rock climb at the end. Probably not for us.
We exited the park at the Thornton Gap Station instead of continuing all the way to Front Royal. We thought about stopping at one of the local wineries on the way home, but when we pulled in, the parking lot was packed and there were lots of kids running around. Not our idea of enjoying a nice glass of wine. We discovered that was the only one open on such a pretty afternoon so I guess that’s why it was so busy. We came home and enjoyed an hour on the front porch in the sun. It was a good thing we did because it’s been back to being cold since. It is supposed to warm up for a few days in a row next week and my husband plans on a little fishing, at least for a couple of those days. I suggested that we find somewhere to go, too.
Thanks for stopping by and taking a little trip with me. As the weather warms up, I hope to be bringing you along for more of our trips.