For runners looking to get a rewarding workout away from the crowds, this lollipop-style route connects three different trails to access three vista points from a less popular, seasonal parking area. Due to its increased difficulty, you won't find as many trail users but don't expect to be alone.
The Hog Rock/Blue Ridge Summit Vista and Thurmont Vista parking areas are closed during the winter months (mid-November - early March).
Challenging but scenic area to run that can be fairly busy with other trail users.
From the Blue Ridge Summit Vista parking area, head north for a couple hundred feet on the Blue Ridge Summit Trail
to the first viewpoint. Given its close proximity to the road, you may find a number of other folks in this area. From the vista point, continue the descent as the trail bends to the east, following the yellow blazes.
At the bottom of the descent, just under one mile from the start, turn left (east) onto the Thurmont Vista Trail
. Soon, you'll arrive at Thurmont Vista, the second of three vista points on this run.
Continue south along the pink/purple blazes toward the Wolf Rock / Chimney Rock Trail
and turn left onto the Wolf Rock / Chimney Rock Trail
for a hundred yards to the Wolf Rock outcrop and vista, which is actually below the intersection but it's a neat rock formation to explore.
From Wolf Rock, retrace your steps to the Thurmont Vista Trail
, except this time, stay left on the Wolf Rock / Chimney Rock Trail
and climb toward the park road and the Blue Ridge Summit Trail
, which gradually ascends to the north and the Blue Ridge Summit Vista parking area.