Perched on top of Big Flat Mountain, this is one of the largest campgrounds in the park. Loft Mountain is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, providing a wilderness getaway in the historic Virginia mountains.
Shenandoah National Park has over 500 miles of trails, including 101 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Some trails lead to a waterfall or lookout, while others wind deep into the forest and wilderness.
Trails to the Big Run Wilderness area are accessible from the campground, and pristine waterfalls are a common site along the popular trails.
Wildlife viewing is also a popular pastime, with black bears, wild turkey, deer, birds and countless other animals abundant across the park.
The campground is located right off of Milepost 80 on the famous Skyline Drive, which runs 105 miles north and south along the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Stunning views are available from any of the 75 scenic overlooks.
This expansive campground offers 200 campsites, as well as modern conveniences like flush toilets, water and dump station, which create a comfortable camping experience. Pay showers nearby at the campstore.
Shenandoah National Park includes 300 square miles of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the southern Appalachians. The park rises above the Virginia Piedmont to its east and the Shenandoah Valley to its west. Loft Mountain's location on the mountain top offers easy access to Skyline Drive which offers sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the surrounding rolling hills and open meadows.
Two visitor centers with bookstores and exhibits are located in the park (milepost 5 and milepost 51). There are concession managed restaurants, gift shops and lodging facilities scattered throughout the park.
Charges & Cancellations
Cancellations more than 48 hours in advance of arrival date only incur a $10 transaction fee. Within 48 hours, $10 and the first night's fee are charged
ADA Access: N
We did not have a reservation and were lucky to get a site. It is a large campground with 200 sites for RV's & tent campers. The site we had was primitive, no water or electric, but had a picnic table, fire ring, & a bear box. Although the sites were close, they were situated to maximize privacy. The campgrounds had plenty of restrooms with flush toilets & sinks. The camp store has laundry facilities and showers that you must pay for, $1.75 for 5 minutes. The grounds and facilities are very clean. An added bonus, you can access the Appalachian Trail right from the campgrounds that provides amazing views
Loft is my favorite out of the campgrounds I’ve visited in the Shenandoah National Park. I’ve been Big Meadows and Lewis, but never to Matthew’s Arm. No reservations here, so you have to get lucky. But if you do and get a good site, it’s so going to be worth it. We had a site where you park at the top of a hill and hike down a slightly steepish hill to the site. It was shady, wooded, private, and quiet. There were a few sites beside us, but spaced nicely apart. The best tent views are the ones with no cars and bathhouses and this campground definitely gives you that. This one also provides bear boxes for food.
Favorite mini-hike nearby: Black Rock Summit (see photos). Beautiful views of the park, easy (the whole loop is less than a mile with just 175ft. of elevation gain), kid-friendly, and pet-friendly.
Large ample sights with views at or near sights. Lots of options! We will return!
I’ll admit, I was slightly skeptical booking this place. I don’t really dig large group areas and car camping much anymore… but this place was pretty cool. We got a walk in site, so our tent was way far away from cars and other people. The site included a fire pit w/grill grate, picnic table, and metal bear box. We did have any neighboring campers that we could see or hear, just a few groups off in the distance. There was a convenience camp store that came in super handy. It also offered showers (for $1.75), laundry, and hot coffee, among other things. The campsite was tucked between some really nice hiking areas, so we didn’t have to go far to check stuff out. I absolutely approve of this place. Recommended.
The views are just breath taking! And such a wonderful quiet place to get your head together!
A lot of space, clear bathrooms, frendly personel
This campground has some spots that are reservable and some that are first come first serve. There are walk up and drive up sites, all including a fire pit with a grate and a picnic table. The bathrooms were clean and there was a campstore down the road. Great place to stay!
Loft Mountain was the third stop on our tour of Shenandoah National Park. First stop traveling south on Skyline Drive was Mathews Arm and second was Big Meadows at about the halfway point. Loft Mountain is at about the 3/4 mark. These parks are well spaced for viewing and hiking in between each campground.
I'm a big fan of campgrounds in national parks. Why do I like this one? Pretty much the same reasons as I liked the other Shenandoah campgrounds:
All the basic needs are available in a scenic setting.
Generator-free sections (because I hate noisy generators)
About 75% of the sites are first-come, first-served sites so you should always be able to find a site if you arrive early.
The $15 price is a bargain and our Lifetime Senior Pass cuts the fee in half.
Hiking: There's a lot to keep you busy in the entire national park, but rainy, foggy weather kept us from exploring as much as we'd like. We'll be back!
Things to Know About the Sites
Some sites have food storage boxes. Use them as an alternative to keeping food locked in your vehicle.
Walk-to tent sites: It's not a long walk to your site from a designated parking spot.
I was surprised to see that most sites (other than walk-to tent sites) have long, pull through parking pads, and most have a grass buffer (and possibly a few trees) separating the site from the road. These asphalt pads can accommodate RVs of all sizes and have a spacious area behind the pull through with a picnic table, fire ring and room for a tent. Great sites!
Generator-free sites in loop F and part of G are reservable sites. If you want one of these sites, I recommend a reservation. See the site map photo.
Restrooms with a utility sink outside some of them
Potable water and trash/recycling stations are spread throughout the park. These are all shown on the site map photo.
Camp store with ice, wood and limited food choices is a short walk from the campground entrance.
Showers: $1.75 for 5.25 minutes. These are located in a restroom near the campstore and look new. There is a handicapped accessible shower/bathroom combination.
Laundry facility near the camp store
Loft mountain campsite I’d say is more for hikers, site see’rs, and maybe travelers. If you want to just get away and go camping, I’m not sure this spot is the best. If you want to get out and find hiking trails or beautiful sites along Skyline Drive and just need a site to lay your head down at night? This is the place. Many of the sites are very close together, and in direct view of other camper. To some this isn’t a problem and it’s really not for me either. But for the just camping to get out of the city trip is what your looking for, this may not be for you.
The reservation service through the website was weird. Must reserve two days in advance, at least.
We went last weekend of Sept and just drove there on Friday night hopping a walk in would be available. There was. By Saturday afternoon every campsite was occupied. The self register when the guard shack is closed is an easy and fair system.
There is a great store that closes at 8pm but has everything that you probably forgot at home plus more. They require that you only burn kiln dried wood at Lift Mountain. They have bundles for sale in the store for $7. We found out that the wood was still a little moist and did not burn all that great.
The nearby trails and views are AMAZING! We did a short 3.3 mike round trip to two waterfalls and it was fantastic. Later on watched the sunset at one of the Skyline lookouts.
My overall take: if your looking to really get outdoors and see nature this is your camp. If your looking for a leisurely camp away, your could find better.
Nice shady camp sites. Some are bike in sites and most good shade. Nice trails near by including the AT. Wildlife spotting .. mother bear and 3 babies, deer, snakes, owl, rabbit, etc.