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Now that the weather is warming up and Spring is in full bloom, it’s a great time to head to the hills and take the kids out for a hike! One of my favorite ways to get some fresh air, sunshine, and exercise is by checking out one of the many amazing trails around Harrisonburg. While some of these trails are free to use, like Massanutten Storybook Trail, others in the Shenandoah National Park require a fee to enter. If you have a child in 4th grade, you can get a free park entry ticket for the entire family by using the Every Kid Outdoors Pass. but be sure to fill and print it out at home before you head out. Don’t forget to look up directions for each of these, grab water bottles and bug spray, and enjoy your adventure!
This trail is a favorite among many moms! It is a paved, stroller-friendly trail in Luray that is only 0.8 miles down and back. Because Massanutten Storybook Trail is short, be sure to pause along the path and let the kids scramble up the large rocks that line the path and explore along the way. The path leads to a platform overlook with gorgeous views of Page Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains! Get directions and more information here.
This is a hidden gem in Staunton! It’s a very short hike (only 0.1 miles!) to the falls from the parking area. There is one steep part of the trail so be careful if you’re carrying a baby. Don’t forget to wear your swimsuits and water shoes and wade in the water if it’s a warm and sunny day! Note that the parking area can only hold about 3 to 4 cars. Located on Cochran’s Mill Rd in Staunton. The parking area will be on your left just before Old Greenville Rd. Get more information and directions.
This trail is in Shenandoah National Park. Please note that there is a fee to enter the park. However, you can choose to go on one of the free days or, if you have a child in 4th grade, you can get in free using the Every Kid Outdoors Pass. The Limberlost Trail is another stroller friendly path, though slightly longer than the Massanutten Storybook Trail, clocking in at 1.3 miles roundtrip. There’s no overlook, but it is a beautiful walk through the woods with plenty of chances to see wildlife! Located at mile marker 43 on Skyline drive. Thornton Gap Entrance in Luray is the closest to this trail. You can ask the park rangers for a map when you enter. Get directions and more information here.
Located in the George Washington National Forest, this spot is only a short half-mile hike to a cool swimming hole! The trail has some rocky areas, but nothing a two-year-old can’t handle! Located on Airey Lane in Keezletown. Get more information and directions here.
Also in Shenandoah National Park, the Black Rock Summit is a 1-mile circuit hike that leads to an amazing boulder “field” with beautiful mountain views! Kids will love scrambling up those rocks and exploring! Located at mile marker 84.4 on Skyline Drive. Enter at the Swift Run Gap entrance and head South. Get more information and directions here.
This is another hike in Shenandoah National Park that is slightly longer at 1.6-miles round trip hike but is still easy for kids to do and will lead you to amazing views of the valley! Located at mile 41.7 of Skyline drive. Enter the park at the Thorton Gap entrance. The parking area is located at the northern entrance to the Skyland loop. Get more information and directions here.
There you have it!! Whether you prefer a stroller-friendly paved path like the Massanutten Storybook Trail or something a little more challenging, these are all great trails and hikes to explore as a family! I hope that you and your kids take advantage of this beautiful place we live and get outside to explore our the Valley!
Be sure to check out this post about home cleaning services near Harrisonburg next!
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