Swimming In Shenandoah: White Oak Canyon

Park at White Oak Canyon Parking (GPS: 38.53927, -78.34935)
Main attraction: Hike, swim holes and waterfalls
Length: 7 miles out and back
Difficulty: Moderate
Map and Directions

White Oak Canyon Waterfalls, Shenandoah


Last weekend we went to White Oak Canyon in Shenandoah to hike and refresh our bodies in the swim holes of the Robinson river.

Usually there is a $10 dollar fee to enter the park, but last weekend it was free. The trail starts at the ranger station and it follows the river all the way up to the top. We first hiked up to the top to enjoy the many beautiful views of waterfalls and the forest.

Swim holes and boulders

We were looking for a good swim hole close to the trail, and we found a secluded one close to a big boulder, after the switchbacks and stone steps. The big ones were crowded. The water hole was big enough to immerse ourselves comfortably. We took a bath, had a snack, relaxed by the river and watched the sky framed by trees. If you like swimming holes, try also this hike.

The spot was great for bouldering. We also came here on fall and had a good time. By the time we couldn't swim by still appreciated the views and the climb. This is how the boulder looked like by October:

Bouldering at White Oak Canyon back in Fall, Shenandoah 

Overlooking the canyon

On our way down we stopped at the overlook for some great views of the mountains at sunset. Green and blue forests with yellow and pinky sky.

White Oak Canyon Overlook, Shenandoah National Park

Big Bear

The sounds of the forest intensified in the twilight. We spotted a big bear in the trail on our way back to the trailhead, but it left quickly to the forest.

It was a great and relaxing day in the nature. We were both tired when we started to hike up but as always it was very rewarding. Next weekend we are doing a 3 day hike and camp in Seneca Falls, looking forward to it.  

What we did last weekend? We had fun in nature!

This trip is featured on the book 20 Weekend Trips Close to Washington DC.