Harvey’s Knob Overlook to Sunset Field Overlook

Yesterday I hiked a 23-mile section of the trail from Harvey’s Knob Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway to Sunset Field Overlook, which is where the Apple Orchard Falls trail is located. Apple Orchard Falls is a beautiful 200 foot waterfall that is a popular destination for hikers. It is located a little over a mile off the Appalachian Trail and I did not want to do an additional two miles, so I did not go there yesterday. But I have been there twice before on day hikes, the first time with the Princess, our daughter and her boyfriend (now husband) and our son and his girlfriend (now wife). It was a great hike and it brought good fortune to our family since we got a son-in-law and daughter-in-law out of it!

Here’s a photo of the Princess, our children and me under a small part of the falls…


Here’s another more recent photo of the Princess and me at the falls during a winter hike.


The AT crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway a lot and then from time to time it branches off and gets away from the road. Yesterday I had a little bit of both during the hike yesterday. It was a good section of well-maintained trail with some steep climbs at the end. In fact from 3:00 until I finished at 5:45, it was all climbing. That wore me out but at least today I did not run out of water until the very end…and I had thought to have a big bottle of Gatorade waiting for me in the car.

At 3:00, just before the climbing started, I took a short break at Cornelius Creek Shelter, which is at mile 760.4 on the AT. It is one of the nicest, most well-designed shelters that I have seen. It has a large porch with a picnic table and another bench, and a large sleeping area with a loft that hangs out like a balcony over the porch. It seems very spacious and would be a very comfortable place to stay. Cornelius Creek runs right by the shelter so there is a convenient water source and the pleasant sound of flowing water to listen to as you go to sleep. There is also a metal fire ring which would make it easy to cook on the campfire. I did not visit the privvy but I’m sure it’s equally luxurious – by trail standards.

Today I will cover the section from Sunset Field Overlook to the James River Bridge at Route 501. I’ve never crossed the James River on the footbridge, so I’m looking forward to that. Tonight there’s a big dinner party for two young friends who are about to get married and I need to get an early start this morning and walk fast so I can get home in time for that. So off I go…


About The Man in My Shoes

Since retiring in 2012 I am enjoying the freedom of being able to make my own decisions about how I spend my time and am taking advantage of the opportunities that I have to spend more time with my family, explore, learn, and pursue my dreams and goals. I look forward to writing about these pursuits and hope you enjoy reading about them.
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3 Responses to Harvey’s Knob Overlook to Sunset Field Overlook

  1. Annette says:

    As you describe this area, it seems to be one of the loveliest along the AT. Love the photos of you and our family before the the addition of two little boys. Tally ho and enjoy the hike and the fun event this evening.

  2. Theodora says:

    Love the pics and the waterfall! 🙂

  3. Annette says:

    I meant to add that the photo of Walker and Princess by the waterfall is fabulous! And, I know that yesterday was the big dinner. That must be the one that our Princess planned wearing her “party planner” hat.

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