Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1

    Default Anyone real familar with the Priest Wilderness in Virginia

    Hi All, I am trying to locate a blue blaze I did back in 2002 in the Priest Wilderness. A friend and I were doing 5 week section hike of most of VA south of SNP and on one of our sections we ended up doing was a blue blaze around the Priest. I have looked on recent maps of the area and cannot find the blue blaze we did. I think it may be long gone but its just stuck in my mind. It was early spring ahead of the bubble and we were not equipped for the weather conditions up on the Priest. It was around 20 degrees, snowing with patches of ice and high winds when we crossed what I believe is RT 56 Tye River. Somewhere not that far into the woods we came to a signed junction with a blue blaze that bypassed the Priest. It slabbed the slopes of the Priest and eventually it ended up in the drainage below the Priest Shelter and came out at the shelter. Generally when we were down south we stuck to the maps and for us to do a blueblaze we would have had to be fairly certain where we ended up. I pulled out the map I used at the time (Map #5) of Virginia and I don't see a trail. I do see a silver creek in the general area but don't think we were that low on the slope. So can anyone familiar with this area back then can confirm if there was at one point a blue blaze to skip the Priest?

    BTW, since we sectioned over a 10 year period we missed a few gaps along the trail which occurred when the trail was "officially closed" including the Standing Indian section that was closed due to a hurricane that nailed Franklin TN. We went back down south after we had made it down to Springer and keyswapped the missing sections including the Priest on a far nicer day.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-28-2010
    Location
    Montgomery, AL
    Posts
    145

    Default

    I just looked on a 2016 USGS and a few other maps but nothing stood out.

    Try looking here:

    https://livingatlas.arcgis.com/topoexplorer/index.html




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-28-2010
    Location
    Montgomery, AL
    Posts
    145

    Default

    PS. You sure it was The Priest? There’s blue blazed trails that bypass Three Ridges just north of The Priest near Maupin Field Shelter. Just north or Rt 56.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Registered User LittleRock's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-10-2014
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Age
    34
    Posts
    584
    Images
    8

    Default

    I can't find it anymore, but I remember reading somewhere that part of the AT going up the Priest got washed out and had to be rebuilt following a major rain storm sometime in the 2000's. Maybe the storm also washed out the blue blaze and it never got rebuilt?
    It's all good in the woods.

  5. #5
    Registered User JPritch's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-03-2017
    Location
    Lynchburg, VA
    Age
    41
    Posts
    532

    Default

    Which direction were you hiking?

    As globetruck mentioned, my first thought was to the blue-blazed Mau Har on Three Ridges that dumps you out at a shelter as well.

    I've hiked the Priest several times over the past 6 years and if there was a blue blaze, there are absolutely no remnants of it remaining today (coming SOBO from Rt56 to the shelter).
    While searching for that unknown edge in life, never forget to look home. For the greatest edge you can find in life is to stand in the protective shadow of those who love you.

  6. #6

    Default

    I agree it was probably the Mau Har trail around the three ridges. Thats what it sounds like. The Prest shelter is up pretty high on the ridge, while Harpers Creek shelter is next to a stream down low in a draw. Real pretty setting, one of my favorites. The Mau Har trail actually comes out a little south of the shelter.

    Coming down off of the Three Ridges is a knee cruncher of a decent, you'd remember that. I found a bottle of Fire Ball whiskey set on a tree stump about 3 switchbacks above the shelter (going SOBO). Just what I needed after that day!
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  7. #7

    Default

    Try to find the quad map for that area. These are often old but pretty detailed for local trails.
    "Sleepy alligator in the noonday sun
    Sleepin by the river just like he usually done
    Call for his whisky
    He can call for his tea
    Call all he wanta but he can't call me..."
    Robert Hunter & Ron McKernan

    Whiteblaze.net User Agreement.

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Alligator View Post
    Try to find the quad map for that area. These are often old but pretty detailed for local trails.
    https://ngmdb.usgs.gov/topoview/view...46.048/-74.919

    enjoy getting your map geek on

  9. #9

    Default

    I have already looked up the USGS map for the area. I see some dotted lines in the general area but nothing resembling a blue blaze.

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    I have already looked up the USGS map for the area. I see some dotted lines in the general area but nothing resembling a blue blaze.

    Re-reading your description, it was definitely the Mau-Har trail. The Priest is south of the Tye river. If you crossed the river, you were heading for the Three Ridges and one heck of a climb. The Mau-Har trail begins 1.7 miles from the river crossing and at the top of a 1000 foot climb.

    The Mau-Har goes around the west side of Three Ridges and comes out at the Maupin Field Shelter. I may do this blue myself on my next hike there in a few months. Unless the weather is really nice, the view from Three Ridges is pretty good.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  11. #11

    Default

    Mau Har is strenuous and for the record is just as hard as the white blazes up the other side

  12. #12
    Registered User LittleRock's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-10-2014
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Age
    34
    Posts
    584
    Images
    8

    Default

    https://www.alltrails.com/explore/tr...-view-full-map

    Ah, yes the Mau-Har trail does make more sense. It stays at lower elevation than the AT, passes a couple of waterfalls, and is a shorter route to Maupin Field Shelter (5 miles vs. 8 via AT) but it misses the spectacular viewpoint just north of the Three Ridges summit.

    The Priest 3 Ridges.jpg
    It's all good in the woods.

  13. #13
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    3,224
    Images
    3

    Default

    Ah, yes the Mau-Har trail does make more sense. It stays at lower elevation than the AT, passes a couple of waterfalls, and is a shorter route to Maupin Field Shelter (5 miles vs. 8 via AT) but it misses the spectacular viewpoint just north of the Three Ridges summit.



    makes a wonderful loop trip.....

    at least it was for me---i went up to the ridge, camped up there, then down Mau Har and camped at the waterfall............

  14. #14

    Default

    Well 18 years will do it, I definitely had the two confused. Thanks for the help all.

++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •