Kurt on an earlier Sprouts Run/Wilson Mountain hike, last winter.
Sprouts Run/Wilson Mountain Trails loop. 8 miles.
This pretty hike seems to remain largely a secret, though on this day it was evident that maintenance had been done, from the cutting of fallen trees to the trimming of trail-encroaching weeds.
But peruse most any hiking guidebook and you won't find mention of either trail. Which perhaps contributed to our having the loop completely to ourselves on a fall day nothing less than perfect for a walk in the woods.
We chose to take what seems to be the easier direction for this loop – up the relatively gentle, stream-hugging Sprouts Run Trail. The trail has a few campsites and multiple crossings of the stream, before taking a hairpin left for its last quarter mile, up to the forest road that takes you, after about a mile, to the wooded remainder of the Wilson Mountain Trail along the ridge and then down the mountain.
We'd sought a viewpoint for lunch on this clear blue day, but settled for a clearing in the sunshine at the end of the road. We'd forgotten the more open spots not much farther along, which offered glimpses both east and west through the trees, and which in non-leaf season provide great views.
There are several distance estimations on this hike, ranging from 7.4 (which comes up on some obscure hiking blog associated with Blue Ridge Country magazine) to nine miles and even one that says 10. Eight miles or just a little more seems about right.
One more high note on this pretty day: It's always great when Broderick Crawford Day falls on a weekend. 10/4. As did, in case anyone missed it, National Convenience Store Day this year. (7/11, of course.)
October 4, 2009