Last Sunday, my husband and I decided to take a ride up to Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. We knew most of the leaves would be down, but it was a beautiful, warm day and besides, they have great food at their restaurants. After eating, I decided to take a hike while my husband took a nap!
An easy trail to hike which is just south of the Skyland Resort is the Limberlost Trail. It is a wheel chair and handicap accessible trail, just about a mile long. It is fairly level and offers a variety of landscapes.
As you can see, there was snow on the ground. It never occurred to me that there would be snow on the trail, but this was a remnant from Superstorm Sandy, two weeks before. The first part of the trail is bordered by mountain laurel. They are so beautiful and usually at their peak in the middle of June. You will also find many wildflowers blooming in the springtime.
The trail has benches about every 400 feet. This is a bonus for those who just want to sit a spell and enjoy the sights and smells of the woods. As you progress down the trail, you will come to an area where there are a number of very large trees that were blown down during Tropical Storm Fran in 1996. The uprooted trees caused a lot of trail erosion, but it was repaired the following year. Soon you will come to a footbridge that passes over a small stream.
As you complete the trail loop, you pass through an area that used to be a thick hemlock forest. Unfortunately the wooly adelgid, an invasive insect, has destroyed many of these magnificent trees. There is still a variety of trees to enjoy, such as maples, white pines and birches.
The hike took about an hour, but I stopped to take many pictures. Whether you have a camera or not, you don’t want to rush through this lovely trail.