Trail Run Project Logo

blueBlack Laurel Run Circuit

  5.0 ( 1 ) Favorite

Trail

9.0 mile 14.4 kilometer loop
83% Runnable
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 1,840' 561 m
Descent: -1,841' -561 m
High: 3,163' 964 m
Low: 1,477' 450 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 8% (4°)
Max Grade: 32% (18°)

Dogs

Unknown
Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by Larysa Murray

A ridge trail run with gorgeous views.

Larysa Murray

Features Birding · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife

At Laurel Run there is a gate that may be open or closed (no specific dates or times for closure). If it is closed, park there and run the additional 1.1 miles on Laurel Run Road. If the gate is open, you may drive all the way to the junction of Laurel Run Spur Trail and Laurel Run Trail and park there to begin your run, reducing the length of the run by 2.2 miles.

Overview

This nine mile circuit will take you along the ridge via the North Mountain Trail; but before you get to the ridge, you'll pass high meadows and a high elevation pond. The run can be challenging at times, offers gorgeous views, and is a unique wilderness experience.

Need to Know

This trail is a good trail to run in the winter as most views would be blocked by trees in spring or summer.

Runner Notes

The Stack Rocks Trail is narrow and consists of several steep switchbacks. Additionally, it is heavily covered in leaves and holes, rocks, and roots are difficult to spot in advance.

Description

The run begins from the parking area by the first gate on Laurel Run Road and heads 1.1 miles along the road. The property surrounding this road is private, and you'll see "No Trespassing" signs. Do not go off the road during this section. When you reach another gate, to your right is the beginning of the yellow-blazed Laurel Run Trail.

Shortly after, there is a split in the trail where you'll stay on the yellow-blazed Laurel Run Trail. Continue for 2.1 miles. This will be the most challenging portion of the run. The trail steadily climbs and some portions are steeper than others. The trail is mostly wooded but you'll come upon two clearings as you run. Closer to the junction with North Mountain Trail, you'll pass a pond on your left. Shortly after passing this pond, you'll come upon the North Mountain Trail junction; turn left onto the orange-blazed North Mountain Trail.

After a little under 0.75 mile on the North Mountain Trail, you'll come upon a white-blazed trail that will take you to a lookout. This is a nice spot in the run to sit and enjoy lunch. It offers the best view that you'll have during the run, so take some time here. After getting back on the trail, you'll continue for another 1.6 miles, with slight ups and downs in in the terrain as you cross over two more knolls. Following the completion of the second knoll, you'll come upon the purple-blazed Stack Rock Trail. Take a slight left onto this trail to start your descent.

The Stack Rock Trail follows a series of switchbacks and is quite steep. Watch your footing as leaves can cover holes, rocks, and roots. The trail here is also a bit narrow. Continue down this trail for approximately 1.3 miles until you come upon the blue-blazed trail for Laurel Run Spur Trail, which is also Logger Road 252. Turn left onto this road and follow it back to the junction at which you started your run. Continue on Laurel Run Road for the 1.1 miles back to the parking area.

Run this trail?

We need help with the following missing trail information:

Dogs Allowed, Flora & Fauna, History & Background

Contacts

Rate This Featured Run

Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Run

Check In

Check-Ins

none

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#1158

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
5 Star
100%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Featured Run Rankings

#29

in Virginia

#1,158

Overall
30 Views Last Month
837 Since Feb 8, 2018
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
0%
100%
0%
0%

0 Comments

Trail Run Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Running