Hungry Mother State Park Visit


My son has been bugging me about camping. He has it in his mind that he wants to backpack, camp, etc. – the whole nine yards. I’m not so sure about that myself so when I was planning our spring break trip I decided to try a cabin at one of the Virginia State Parks. I settled on Hungry Mother State Park for a couple of reasons. 1 – It was close to where we’d be hiking and 2 – it looked beautiful and had great hikes.

We arrived to the park after the park office had closed. We picked up our packet that was waiting for us and proceeded to the cabin that was listed. Unfortunately, they had mixed up some of the packet information and it was the wrong cabin. Thankfully the park ranger on duty fixed everything up for us and we quickly made it over to our right cabin. It was a two bedroom cabin. The one room had a double bed and the other had bunk beds. If you plan on staying in a cabin during the winter please note that the temperature only goes to 72 degrees. I know that’s warm enough for some but not so much for me. But I had come prepared so I was ok with my cabin socks. The room with the bunk beds was a little tricky. The top bunk was blazing hot while the bottom one was cold. I had a kid in my bed both nights we were there. I did attempt to start a fire the second night. They give you a bundle of firewood at the doorstep. I grew up camping and was actually quite good at making a camp fire but no matter what I did – the wood wouldn’t burn. I’m not sure if it was just too cold, damp or what. I was a little bummed.

Other than that small issue the cabin was great.


The first morning we woke up it was very cold. 25 degrees in fact. We headed to the park office to check-in and asked about a restaurant. There wasn’t much in that little town but the Appletree Restaurant was quite good. The warm coffee and food really helped out a lot. We headed back to the cabin and prepared for our hike.

We had originally intended to do Molly’s Knob. I really wanted to tackle it but since the previous day’s hike had been pretty tough I took it easy on my kids. I’m sure my daughter could have handled it but wasn’t so sure about my son. We opted to do the Lake Trail. It winds around the man-made lake and does have some elevation. It is about 5.7 miles and was beautiful.


My son kept asking to eat lunch and I kept putting him off. I wanted to find a nice spot and lo and behold I did. We were about half way through the hike and a nice spot presented itself to us. It was sunny and almost warm. When the wind wasn’t blow it was perfection. The grass was soft and we were right next to the water.


As you wind around the lake towards the entrance of the park you see the damn that was build to create the lake. You can even walk out onto it which is pretty cool. The kids took some time to wrestle and roll down the hill that is nearby and I was able to stand watch them get along. That’s rare.

I couldn’t stop taking pictures of the lake. The whole park is just so beautiful. I had gotten up and walked to the lake early that morning in hopes of seeing the sunrise. The mountains blocked it but the sunsets were really spectacular.


I could imagine staying at Hungry Mother for a whole week and loving it. They have canoe rentals, paddle boats, parks, playgrounds, a restaurant, and more available for recreation when summer rolls around. I might not look forward to spiders in the cabin (I bet there are a lot in the summer) but it’d be worth the gamble. If you haven’t made your way to one of Virginia’s state parks – do it! I have been to five so far and each one has just been beautiful.

See all my photos on Flickr.
Hungry Mother State Park//

About Jennifer G

Nature lover. Being outside keeps me sane and balanced.

Posted on April 5, 2016, in 52 Hike Challenge, Virginia Hiking, Virginia State Parks and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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