While enjoying a getaway with my mother and sisters at Mountain Lake in Virginia, we solicited advice about casual hikes. A helpful young woman in the recreation office at Mountain Lake Hotel told us about trails to War Spur and Wind Rock, both of which are located north of Mountain Lake off a gravel road. We chose Wind Rock, both for its easy access and its tremendous views. Besides, it’s on the Appalachian Trail. So my mom hiked on the AT on her 80th birthday. Not bad.
The trail climbs through a deciduous forest full of colorful leaves to a viewpoint about .4 miles from the road. Once we got there, we scrambled out on the rocks, which drop off precipitously, and enjoyed the vistas of long ridges and deep valleys. On our descent, we met a man from Michigan section hiking the AT. I was a tad jealous. I commented that it seemed like a good time of year to hike, with cooler temps, but he said that water was harder to come by, so he had to hike further each day to ensure a new supply. Food for thought.
I would recommend the Wind Rock hike to any people in the area who want maximum payoff for minimal effort.