Combining Corbin Cabin Cutoff Trail and Nicholson Hollow Trail, along with a few steps on the Appalachian Trail, gives the hiker a nice 4.3-mile loop. Corbin Cabin and Nicholson Hollow Trails were actually built by the mountain people that once inhabited the area. The trails can be steep and rocky at various points, an environment in which mountain laurel thrive. Late May and early June hikers are treated to the beautiful pink mountain laurel blossoms. There are a few streams that cross the paths and by crossing the slender Hughes River, the hiker can see the cabin where the colorful mountain man, John T. Nicholson, once lived. In 1954, The Potomac Appalachian Trail Club enlarged and restored the old Corbin Cabin making it a rental facility to hikers. The surrounding grounds also make a nice respite for an noontime lunch. At this location along Corbin Cabin Cutoff Trail, the hiker can choose to head east onto Nicholson Hollow Trail which leads to the park boundary. By turning right (west) onto Nicholson Hollow Trail, the hiker will be taken uphill to the Drive. At the Drive, turn left and walk about 75 yards to an opening across the Drive which is the Appalachian Trail. Take it for approximately 0.6-mile at which point you will see the parking area back across the Drive. This has completed your loop.
Directions: From Front Royal, VA, Skyline Drive travels the entire length of Shenandoah National Park. Mile markers are placed along the right-hand side of the road heading south. They are numbered from north to south beginning at the northern terminus in Front Royal, Virginia. Facilities, trails and park features use the mile markers as points of reference. Trailhead is located at milepost 37.9. There are small parking areas just north and south of this milepost.
Elevation: 3,150 feet
Elevation Gain: 1,350 feet
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Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
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