Shenandoah National Park: Big Devils Stairs

This 5.6-mile lasso loop departs the popular Big Devils Stairs hike, scramble upstream to waterfalls and connecting with a forgotten trail free of crowds.
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This 5.6-mile lasso loop departs the popular Big Devils Stairs hike, scramble upstream to waterfalls and connecting with a forgotten trail free of crowds.

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 6.6

Waypoints

BDS001

Location: 38.7676659, -78.2335129

Gravel Springs trailhead; trail begins on S end of parking lot

BDS002

Location: 38.7651672, -78.2317505

Veer L off old road onto connector trail

BDS003

Location: 38.7636337, -78.2320862

Head E on Bluff Trail, following the contour line @ 2,500 ft.

BDS004

Location: 38.7650986, -78.2129517

Cross small creek

BDS005

Location: 38.7643661, -78.2128143

Turn R onto Big Devils Stairs Trail; descent downhill

BDS006

Location: 38.7583504, -78.2147141

Hear waterfalls splashing in deep gorge

BDS007

Location: 38.7581673, -78.2152481

Veer off-trail for stellar views of Shenandoah Country to the S and down into gorge

BDS008

Location: 38.7513504, -78.2147141

Cross creek; trail abruptly ends at barbwire fence (park boundary); turn N and begin off-trail, following the old route of Big Devils Stairs along the creek

BDS009

Location: 38.7583504, -78.2158966

Gorge narrows; small waterfall ahead

BDS010

Location: 38.7589989, -78.2157822

Veer L to navigate around medium-sized waterfall

BDS011

Location: 38.7608337, -78.2153702

Old trail blaze, continue on faint path to Bluff Trail

BDS012

Location: 38.7644157, -78.2155151

L onto Bluff Trail; return to trailhead