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
In our opinion this is the best campground in Shenandoah National Park. Sites are large and many offer privacy. Sites include fire ring and picnic tables. Some of the sites have a mountain view where you can watch the sunset. The campground has great facilities including flush toilets, hot and cold running water, indoor showers ($1.75 for 5 minutes), laundromat, camp store with groceries, camping supplies, wine and beer, sandwiches, and morning coffee. The sites are $15 per night in this campground, and there is an entrance fee into Shenandoah National Park (we paid $30 for a week). The Appalachian Trail runs thru this campground and offers some great hiking.
This campground is perfect for those looking to just get away from things for a couple of days. The drive in from Swift Run Gap or the South Entrance is fairly easy, but off the road enough that you won't hear traffic. The roads within the campground are curvy enough to encourage people to go slow. Also, most sites are hedged on all sides with woods, boulders, and bushes except for the road side.
I've only car camped here, but there were plenty of people hiking into their sites. Those sites look far more remote and peaceful than the car camping, but having a potty-training 1-year old, I opted for a site close to the restrooms. We were actually right next to one and the sounds were a bit bothersome to me, but it was a great trade off for the family.
This is bear country and we saw a few bears lolly gagging in the area. They were curious and never posed a danger from what we could sense. If you are comfortable with being close to a more docile black bear, then you'll get your chance out here. Having said that, keep your food in a bear bag or in your car. DO NOT leave it in a rag top Jeep/car as I've had a friend replace their Wrangler roof after it was torn into by a bear smelling food.
The camp store is loaded with everything you need from food to needed gear. Plus, the showers are a couple of bucks in quarters for 5 minutes and they are far cleaner than I've experienced out West.
There is not a gas station close by, so be sure to have at least a half tank when you arrive. I'm sure the rangers would assist, but just not worth it if you can prepare.
There is a short hike (around 1 mile) called Frazier Discover Trail. It starts at a Wayside point at the turn off for the campground from Skyline Drive. It's got a nice incline, but the views are worth it.
My favorite part with the family was the Saturday night Ranger presentation. The location of the presentation allows you to get FANTASTIC views of the sunset while learning about mushrooms, local wildlife, or something else the rangers make interesting. You've got to make the sunset to make it worth it.
This was my second stay at Loft Mountain and I'd do it again.
We loved sharing the site with so much wildlife. We had a bear, a doe and her fawn, and a lively family of rabbits. The facilities are clean, and there is a store and showers. Only thing I didn't like was the one way through the whole campground, but I understand the need for it. They have walk in sites for tent campers who want a more wilderness experience or for the through trail campers.
Great central location in deflation to some awesome hikes and close to civilization. Basic goods and alcohol available in the camp store. Nice spacious and clean camp spots. If you come here early in the season there's also plenty of firewood available in the wooded areas all over the campground.
I'd have loved to see free showers on the campground but no complaints otherwise.
Will certainly go back!
I recently camped at one of the “tent only” sites, and it was a pleasant stay. The campground hosts are friendly, great amenities, quiet atmosphere, and access to many hiking trails. The camp store is close and is awesome! They have anything and everything if you forget it. Highly recommended if you want to camp in Shenandoah.
Showers, Store, and Laundry in same building. Check free box for laundry soap before you buy. Campsites are great for walk in.
This is an honor system, first come first serve. Not a lot of sites here. They do have a store and showers within walking distance though. Some of the sites are really close together with minimal privacy. It was still really quiet after hours and it backs directly up to the Appalachian trail and at least one other hike that we saw. We enjoyed our stay here but would have liked a bit more spread out sites.
This is one of our favorite campgrounds in the state of Virginia. The higher elevation of the mountain means lower humidity, and while we have seen rain here more often than not, it usually moves through pretty quickly, and we have also seen some incredible sunsets.
Our favorite loop is the western side of A loop--most of the sites are walk-in sites so they offer a little more privacy and no concern of our kids wandering into the street where cars/bikes are going by. If you get lucky site A20 has incredible western views over the valley, and you can watch the sun set directly from your tent.
There are plenty of sites here for whatever type of camping you prefer--large pull-ins for RVs, large tent pads, grassy and open, shady and secluded, and sites that are near each other if you are with friends/family and want to get multiple sites together. Currently loops F&G are by reservation only, which is a shame as they are the best drive-up sites for tent-campers, so if you haven't been there before it makes it tricky to know you are getting a site that will fit your tent. F loop sites are a little larger, while G loop are a little more private.
Very, very family friendly campground, and lots of nearby hiking. One of my favorite trails for kids, Blackrock Summit, is only about 4 miles south on Skyline Drive, though you can hop on the AT directly at the campsite and have ample hiking opportunities without ever getting in the car. During the late spring through the summer it is common to see thru-hikers set up for the night.
Our last visit here was in June, but September/October is my favorite time to go, on account of cooler nights and fall color in the trees.
Love this camp ground it is well manaqured (although I got poison Ivy) friendly staff and great store clean bathrooms and showers makes a great stay for your Shenandoah stay
We drove into the park for this campground because it seemed to have “walk in” tent camping that was more secluded than typical sites. When we got here, we found out that those sites are actually open fields with little to no privacy while, ironically, the pull through sites at this campground have tons of vegetation and are super private. Great bathroom facilities and we loved our quiet site. Drove south to the 9.8 mi Rip Rap/AT/Wildcat loop. Awesome hike with a great swimming hole about halfway. If you’re comfortable with a strenuous hike, don’t miss it!!!!