Dark Hollow Falls

  • Highlights: Waterfalls, Shenandoah National Park
  • Distance:  1.4 mile out and back 
  • Elevation change: 440 feet
  • Difficulty level: Easy
  • Trailhead Parking: Skyline Drive, mile 50.7, Dark Hollow Falls parking area
  • Website: National Park Service
  • Beer Pairings: Starr Hill Brewing Northern Lights IPA & Grateful Pale Ale

The Hike:

This is a short (but very popular) hike. On busy summer weekends it can be like Disneyland. Get an early start and enjoy the trail while others are still asleep. The trail is well marked and has several sets of stairs. At .6 miles is an overlook with nice views of the top of the falls. Follow the trail down a bit further and enjoy the views from the base of the falls. Battle the crowds and climb back up to return to your vehicle.

We know a few folks who have turned this into a longer loop by continuing on the Rose River Trail Loop and eventually reaching Skyline Drive at the Fishers Gap parking area, mile 49. This requires a walk along Skyline Drive for over 1 mile to return to the Dark Hollow Falls parking area. There really isn’t a path beside Skyline Drive and this route can be a bit treacherous. We suggest driving the 1+ mile on Skyline Drive and then doing the 4 mile Rose River Loop Trail. 

Hike Photos:

Click on an image below for an enlarged view.

Beer Pairing:

Starr Hill Brewing in Crozet was one of the early microbreweries in Virginia. They have been very successful and make really good beer so they are probably too large to be called a microbrewery. Dark Hollow Falls always reminds me of the Grateful Dead for some reason. Starr Hill’s Grateful Pale Ale is an excellent pairing, it is a hoppy blend of Cascade, Centennial, Mosaic, and Falconer’s Flight hops. Jerry would have approved. Northern Lights is a classic American-style IPA and it is one of our “go to” IPAs. Jerry would approve of this one also.

Hike and drink responsibly. Never drink and drive. Stay safe and be responsible.