Washington, DC: Halfmoon Mountain Loop

Climb 1,500 feet on this moderate 9.4-mile circuit.
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Climb 1,500 feet on this moderate 9.4-mile circuit.

Looping 10 miles over empty ridges makes it hard to believe you’re just two hours from the Beltway. From Trout Run Road, ascend the Bucktail Trail 1,500 feet through rocky ravines to 2,826-foot Halfmoon Mountain at mile 4.3. Camp just below the summit in a grove of pines, where you can linger over evening-glow vistas of Great North Mountain and a sea of 4,000-foot peaks. On day two, return via the Halfmoon and Bucktail connector trails (3.6 miles).

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 15.1

Waypoints

BAX001

Location: 46.15864, -68.812126

Grand Lake Rd

BAX002

Location: 46.144875, -68.814626

BAX003

Location: 46.140311, -68.827822

Five Ponds Trail junction

BAX004

Location: 46.140835, -68.856396

Turn left onto Middle Fowler Trail.

BAX005

Location: 46.125816, -68.849214

Middle Fowler Pond and Campground

BAX006

Location: 46.111802, -68.855739

BAX007

Location: 46.115088, -68.856438

Barl Sumit

BAX008

Location: 46.108172, -68.900435

South Branch Pond Campground

BAX009

Location: 46.090139, -68.913739

South Branch Mountain

BAX010

Location: 46.082506, -68.915676

Black Cat Mountain; South Summit

BAX011

Location: 46.08545, -68.895819

Upper South Branch Lean-to

BAX012

Location: 46.091921, -68.889197

Turn right up the ridge.

BAX013

Location: 46.074228, -68.868098

Peak of the Ridges

BAX014

Location: 46.073216, -68.862273

End of Little Knife Edge

BAX015

Location: 46.072877, -68.844817

The Traveler

BAX016

Location: 46.100235, -68.854977

North Traveler Mountain

BAX017

Location: 46.103203, -68.880157

Descend North Ridge.