Hike to Snake Hole

Hiking Distance: .8 miles each way (.4 if you park at the upper parking lot)
*UPDATE: as of July 18th, 2015 the road to the upper parking lot is (temporarily?) closed.

Snake Hole is a great place to cool off during the heat of the summer.

IMG_20140610_080925_873DSC_0001The hike to get there is short and not very strenuous.

snake hole profileDon’t let the name scare you away. I’ve never actually seen a snake there. The little fish will nibble your toes, though.

 

Directions from Charlottesville:
To get to Sugar Hollow, take Barracks Road away from town. Barracks road turns into Garth Road. Continue several miles. At White Hall, you will come to a very sharp turn in the road . Piedmont Store will be directly in front of you. Garth Road takes a sharp right. You want to stay straight, keeping Piedmont store on your right as you pass it.

This is 614. Continue a few more miles. Eventually you will climb a steep hill and see the dam and then Charlottesville Reservoir on your left. At the top of the hill, the road turns to gravel. A little beyond this, you will come to a parking area on your left. I suggest parking here, and continuing up to the trailhead on foot.

The road beyond the first parking area is full of huge potholes. I wouldn’t attempt it in my little car.

IMG_20140610_133521Either on foot or in your car, follow the road until it ends at the trailhead.

IMG_20140610_133704Continue on the trail. Snake Hole is at the second river crossing that you come to.

 

Hike to Blue Hole

Distance: about 3 miles round-trip

I love this swimming hole! ┬áThe water is always refreshing and it’s usually less crowded than Snake Hole (the other swimming hole at Sugar Hollow), which is on the North Fork Moormans River trail. It is a steeper and longer hike to get to Blue Hole, but well worth the extra work.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou can’t tell from the picture, but this swimming hole is quite deep. There are places where I have not been able to touch bottom (not that I’ve tried too hard.)

There used to be a rope swing. You can read about that here.

Directions from Charlottesville:

To get to Sugar Hollow, take Barracks Road away from town. Barracks road turns into Garth Road. Continue several miles. At White Hall, you will come to a very sharp turn in the road . Piedmont Store will be directly in front of you. Garth Road takes a sharp right. You want to stay straight, keeping Piedmont store on your right as you pass it.

This is 614. Continue a few more miles. Eventually you will climb a steep hill and see the dam and then Charlottesville Reservoir on your left. At the top of the hill, the road turns to gravel. A little beyond this, you will come to a parking area on your left.

Park here.

IMG_20140709_121559You want to take the Moormans River trail along the South Fork of the Moormans River. The cement post will point you in the direction that you want to go (as of today, December 10, 2016, the post is lying flat on the ground.) You do not continue up the road you drove in on (which is now blocked by a red gate.)

IMG_20140709_121734

IMG_20130410_144919_876From the parking area, walk around the metal gate and follow the crushed gravel path that leads to what is usually a rock hop across the river (lately it’s been a ford).

IMG_20140709_121422The trail continues on the other side of the river. It is about a 1.5 mile hike up to Blue Hole, which will be on your right. You will have to climb down from the trail to get to it.

If you come to the intersection with the Turk Branch trail, you have gone too far.

Blue Hole Elevation

Blue Hole Hike Elevation Map – One Way

Happy swimming!