If you go

The Washington Post Sunday - - TRAVEL - Jen and Michael rec­om­mend all the day hikes in their book, of course, but here are some of their fa­vorites. A 4.4-mile round trip with an ex­hil­a­rat­ing rock scram­ble to the sum­mit. The trail­head is in the Ge­orge Washington and Jef­fer­son Na­tional Forests, i

WHERE TO BE­GIN

Cold Moun­tain

A 6.1-mile round trip through alpine mead­ows and open fields, with ex­cel­lent views from the top. Lo­cated in the Ge­orge Washington and Jef­fer­son Na­tional Forests, the trail­head is east of Buena Vista.

Mount Pleas­ant

Stun­ning views from the Blue Ridge sum­mit, par­tic­u­larly at sunset, give this 6.5-mile out­ing one of the re­gion’s best pay­offs for the ef­fort. Lo­cated in Ve­su­vius, take In­ter­state 81 south to U.S. 60 East to­ward Buena Vista.

Old Rag

It’s crowded, but this nine-mile hike in cen­tral Shenan­doah Na­tional Park is a clas­sic for a rea­son, thanks to the chal­leng­ing rocky scram­ble to the ridge­line and its fan­tas­tic views. Pick up the trail in park’s borders, south of Sper­ryville.

Big Schloss

WHERE TO END

These post-hike restau­rants are pop­u­lar with the D.C. Ul­tra­light Back­pack­ing Group for fill­ing food and a tol­er­ance for dirty pa­trons.

McMa­hons Ir­ish Pub & Res­tau­rant

Base­camp Brew­pub & Mead­ows

Cap­i­tal Ale House

The Home­place Res­tau­rant

4968 Catawba Val­ley Dr., Catawba 540-384-7252 home.com­cast.net/~kevincd22/the­home­place/ The place to go af­ter Dragon’s Tooth, Tinker Cliffs and McAfee Knob hikes. The res­tau­rant, which dates to 1907, serves its food fam­ily-style, with heap­ing plat­ters of fried chicken, meats, South­ern sides and homey desserts.

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