I parked at Caldwell Fields, on the edge of the Brush Mountain Wilderness, a relatively new wilderness (2009) that is one of the smaller wilderness tracts in Virginia – at 4707 acres, it is the 16th largest of the 24 Virginia wilderness areas. It is very close to the Virginia Tech campus.
|Stream alongside of Caldwell Fields is the boundary for Brush Mtn Wilderness.|
Notice the wilderness boundary sign on the tree.
|View back to the parking lot from the top of the cliff.|
|View of Brush Mountain from along the trail.|
Not a lot of views on this hike.
After wandering a little ways down the woods road, I returned to the same trail, taking that back to my car. Though I was feeling pretty good about myself for crossing a wilderness area with no established trails, I did not want to risk hiking a different ridge and finding a cliff that I couldn’t descend. The hike was only 2.8 miles total in the wilderness, as this trail went straight up the mountain. But there was great satisfaction in crossing the entire wilderness without the benefit of an established trail. I won’t be back to finish the entire 10 miles for this challenge – there is too little time and too many other places to explore – but I count this wilderness as one my bigger accomplishments in the challenge.
|Wilderness boundary and hunter trail as seen from the south/upper elevations of the wilderness.|
|Somebody must come up to enjoy the view pretty regularly!|
|Woods road on the crest of Brush Mountain.|
Brush Mountain East Wilderness
|Wilderness Sign Selfie.|
|Audie Murphy Monument Selfie.|
|Gracie the Fabulous Hiking Dog eyes a black snake halfway across the bridge.|
|Wilderness Sign Selfie|
|This IS the trail, and those plants bite.|