how long is rock creek park trail

Don't rely on trail signs, as there are not many out there. There is no sign identifying the intersection; stay straight to remain on the Valley Trail. Across the street is Picnic Area #6 and the Miller Cabin. Trail Stats Among its 1,754 acres, Rock Creek has over 20 miles of dirt trails. If they can’t get to that because you are wearing long pants, they’ll continue climbing until reaching your hair. Rock Creek Trail. For the next quarter mile the Valley Trail runs parallel to Parkside Drive, then slowly drifts away from it, leaving the traffic noise far behind. This long loop hike through the southern section of Rock Creek Park takes you past the scenic whitewater section of Rock Creek, above a cliff face, and past … This is not the case. The downside to hiking at Rock Creek Park is that because it is in a heavily populated urban area, you rarely find yourself hiking in peace. This map layer covers every part … See your initial registration email, your weekly parkrun newsletter, previous results emails, or you can request a reminder email. A narrow, unnamed trail cuts to the right and follows Rock Creek, which would seem like a likely candidate for the Valley Trail. This is 3.5 miles from the parking lot, the halfway point on the hike. Western Ridge Trail is a mostly smooth trail traversing the entire western side of Rock Creek Park. Both trails head west, and they both come out at Boundary Bridge since that’s the only way across the creek, but I stuck with the official route. The out and back route is a flat and non-technical 3 mile out and back over paved and gravel terrain, with some fun boardwalks and bridges added in. Picnic areas 6-10 Think of them as the sides of a ladder. Recently Updated The trail emerges from the forest onto Beach Drive just south of the Park Police Station. tweet share share. Including the other green areas the park administers (Glover Archbold Park, Montrose Park, Dumbarton Oaks Park, Meridian Hill Park, Battery Kemble Park, Palisades Park, Whitehaven Park, etc. Be on the lookout for a stone wall that juts into the water. The trail eventually climbs high above the road, though not far enough away to escape the traffic noise. Let’s take a stroll around this gorgeous trail hidden in the middle of the city. Eventually, you'll cross over Military Road. Trail length/surface: 18.6 miles, asphalt surface. You are bound to brush up against vegetation, so watch out for ticks. I hiked back to the mill on the Western Ridge Trail. At the 1.75-mile mark on the hike is the intersection with the Theodore Roosevelt Trail. At the bridge, swing to the left and pass under it. Maryland's 14 mile long Rock Creek Trail is a collection of paved multi-use paths through southern Montgomery County. Relevance Maryland's 14 mile long Rock Creek Trail is a collection of paved multi-use paths through southern Montgomery County. There are many connector trails running mostly east-west joining the Western Ridge Trail with the Valley Trail. Think of these connectors as the rungs of a ladder. Be on the lookout for a stone wall that juts into the water. This was the first time in a while that I was hiking in silence, and I began to wonder if I made the correct turn. Title, 5200 Glover Rd, NW In another .3 mile the trail is back along Rock Creek, but follows high above it on a ridge for a quarter mile before gradually descending back to ground level. Trail characteristics: Some hilly parts. Jungle-like terrain just north of Military Road. Dogs are also able to use this trail. Trail marker on the Rock Creek trail, Kankakee River State Park. And if ticks aren’t bad enough, the trail immediately climbs an extremely steep hill along a series of switchbacks until eventually settling high above Beach Drive on another ridge. Just south of Sherrill Drive, the trail intersects with the Whittier Trail, which leads east over to 16th Street. Drinking water: Yes, at various parks along the trail. If you plan to hike back on the Western Ridge Trail, head out to the road and you’ll see the trailhead directly across the street. One day somebody might find it—I just hope it’s not Gollum. The trail sign at the Meadowlink intersection is also a little confusing. However, the Valley Trail actually continues straight, moving away from the creek in the process. Posted on Jan 23, 2013. You can walk right down to the water. This is the shortest and easiest way to go. For more detailed trail information, please visit TrailLink.com. The Valley Trail turns to the left. The northern section follows Beach Drive (on-road). Rock Creek Park’s TRACK trail is located along Rock Creek between Broad Branch Road and Porter Street, NW. The hikers-only trail continues across a small footbridge, The paved, multi-purpose trail takes the larger footbridge. Thus, check the fronts of your legs every few minutes. A quarter mile after passing Military Road, the jungle-like terrain disappears and the trail comes down from the ridge and runs right along the road, passing a restroom building that is open to the public. Valley Trail is close enough to Rock Creek to jump in. Cross Joyce Drive and take the paved multi-purpose trail towards the Military Road overpass. You’ll pass an intersection with a trail that forks off to the right, but just remember to stick to the trail that runs closest to the creek and you can’t go wrong. Rock Creek Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000. By this point the Valley Trail is as flat as a pancake, and it also widens quite a bit. After this, the Valley Trail starts heading downhill on terrain so steep that switchbacks have been formed to alleviate the difficulty of the downhill hike. The map below shows a parking area with convenient access to the Rock Creek Park Trails. Biking in Rock Creek Park is limited to paved surfaces such as city street and multi-purpose trails. The bridge was built in 1902 and is the location where President Theodore Roosevelt supposedly lost one of his rings. Rock Creek to Long Lake Trail is a 4.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Bishop, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. Tips. After hiking a half mile from the parking lot, you finally reach Bluff Bridge. The Valley Trail is the dirt trail to the right that leads up to Beach Drive. Just after passing under the Sherrill Drive overpass is the intersection with the Holly Trail. The terrain directly north of Blagden remains moderately hilly, but nothing like the terrain south of the road. Washington, DC Be on the lookout for an intersection marked with a Valley Trail sign. On the east side of the park there is a trail, about 40 feet above the parallel Rock Creek Park Trail (RCPT), called the Rose Park Trail. As it approaches the overpass for West Beach Drive, the Valley Trail follows Rock Creek very closely. Favorite places to start a hike: Rock Creek Trail (RCT – ~10 mi)- The most obvious and most widely used trail is simply called the “Rock Creek Trail,” which is a paved path running most of the length of the park. Within THPRD boundaries, the Rock Creek Regional Trail consists of 3.5 miles of ADA-accessible trail in the northernmost part of the park district. The trail now runs right along Rock Creek and is oftentimes so close that you can jump right in the water. I hiked from the southern terminus near Peirce Mill to the northern terminus near Boundary Bridge. Cross the bridge and turn left on the multi-purpose trail. One of these, Rock Creek Trail is quite the underrated gem. If you have a ride waiting, this is the end of journey. Think of these connectors as the rungs of a ladder. The Meadowlink Trail is C-shaped, so it heads west, curves north, and then returns east, intersecting once again with the Valley Trail about a tenth of a mile up ahead. A right leads up to the road. The streets can be very congested and there are no bike lanes—or even road shoulders—so I do not recommend biking on the streets. Pay close attention, because at one of the curves it is possible to continue straight while the Valley Trail actually curves around to the right. The Valley Trail is straight ahead. At this point you are on the Western Ridge Trail and need to hike another quarter mile to reach the start of the Valley Trail. Rock Creek and Beach Drive are to the left, though they are too far away to see at this point. More. Rock Creek Trail parkrun takes place every Saturday at 9:00am Please note Rock Creek Trail parkrun is cancelled on 16/01/21 - See the news page for more detail. The White Rock Creek/Lake Trail is without question both the longest and the most heavily-used trail in North Texas. The trail is 0.9 miles long, a 1.8 mile round-trip. Although this area is mostly urbanized, the trail follows a mainly wooded route along the Rock Creek Stream Valley. This branches off to the left and works its way south back to the intersection of Beach Drive and Blagden Road. From the parking area, head straight up the steep hill and into the woods on Western Ridge Trail. Washington DC's Rock Creek Trail is a collection of paved multi-use paths and on-road bike route. It is at this point that the steep hill levels out a little. A traffic free Saturday on scenic Beach Drive. The trail winds west out of Happy Rock Park in back of the soccer fields, under Missouri Route 1, along the backside of a small subdivision under construction and then on into the woods following the creek. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Rock Creek Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000. According to the sign, a strenuous version of the hike forks to the left and a moderate version to the right. The trail is 0.9 miles long, a 1.8 mile round-trip. Many hikers and park users are afraid of dogs; please be respectful of them. Cross the street and follow the worn path that runs along Rock Creek until you get to Joyce Road. Northern trailhead for the Western Ridge Trail, © 2020 Copyright Steven L. Markos. For those who just want to hike one way, be sure to have a ride waiting at the end. The moderate trail proceeds up to and follows a ridge above the strenuous trail, and the two parallel each other until merging back together near the Bluff Bridge at the very end of the Western Ridge Trail. This 1,754 acre city park was officially authorized in 1890, making it the third national park to be designated by the federal government. This is a pet-friendly hike. Length: 8.5 miles. The Valley Trail is now a very narrow trail, and the forest changes from tall trees and a well-manicured floor into a jungle. This follows Rock Creek all the way back to the picnic area. It would be easy to trip and fall down what is close to being a cliff and end up dead in Rock Creek. This comes to an end at a massive tangle of road intersections—Beach Drive, Military Road, and Joyce Road. Below is a link to the full park map. Wear sturdy shoes, dress in layers and anticipate cold and wet weather. The park is more than 2,000 acres (over 3 square miles) and stretches to Maryland where it connects to Rock Creek Stream Valley Park and Rock Creek Regional Park. It is now much wider, so there is less of a chance of coming into contact with ticks. ), it encompasses more than 2000 acres (3 mi , 8 km ). From M and 28th to P and 25th, that trail will be widened by about one foot, making it about six feet wide. 1. Before you go, review how to Recreate Responsibly. Multi-purpose paved trail leads back to Picnic Area #1. It is about 5 miles back to Peirce Mill. At the far end of the picnic area is the intersection with the Melvin Hazen Trail. Dress appropriately. It is here that the Valley Trail once again merges with a horse trail, and from here all the way to the trail’s end near the Boundary Bridge, both horseback riders and hikers share the road. Rock Creek Park is not an enclosed park with an entrance gate, so the roads that run through it are public streets. If you get confused, just remember to stay on the wide horse trail. I’m not sure what this is, but there were a lot of mills along Rock Creek, so maybe this is … Age 12 years) No experience is necessary for taking one of our guided walking trail rides. Most of Rock Creek’s trails are now off-limits to all but the physically fit People use a trail at Rock Creek Park on March 30. The turn is marked by a sign. Prior to the intersection is a great view of some cascades on Rock Creek. Treacherous terrain at the southern end of the Western Ridge Trail. This is a one-way trail that leaves Rock Creek Park and runs down the center of Melvin Hazen Park until ending at Reno Road 1.1 miles away. The trail has a total length of 17.1 miles with the portion of the trail that encompasses the lake having a length of 9.5 miles and the portion of the trail that begins at Hillcrest/LBJ Freeway in North Dallas having a length of 7.6 miles. The Valley Trail, on the eastern side of the park, also starts just north of the National Zoo and winds along the creek that is the park's namesake. Along the way you will encounter bridges, wayside exhibits, plants, animals, and the historic Peirce Mill. Some sections of the trail are used for horse riding so keep an eye out for horse droppings. Using this principle, it is possible to create an almost infinite number of loops in varrying lengths from about 1-mile to 10-miles. The Valley Trail continues on the right side of the road immediately after the overpass. The trail begins a descent back towards ground level just after passing Pulpit Rock, and you’ll soon be hiking right along the creek. By then you will hear the traffic noise, and moments later you’ll be at the road. Hiker and horseback rider segment of the Valley Trail. If you start at the southern terminus as I did, park at Picnic Area #1 next to Peirce Mill. 6. The main section of the park comprises 1754 acres (2.74 mi , 7.10 km ), along the Rock Creek Valley. Construction on a couple of segments of the North Branch Trail, a trail that will eventually extend along the North Branch of Rock Creek from the Rock Creek Valley Trail to Olney, was to begin this spring or last fall, but has been pushed out to 2021.. The Valley Trail eventually comes to a T-intersection at a set of wooden steps where it makes a sharp turn to the right. Rock Creek Park is truly a gem in our nation's capital. It is currently in a floodplain. Nature Center Time: 4.5 hours The problem with the sign is that there are no directional arrows, so it makes you believe the paved path is the Valley Trail. The Valley Trail runs north to south along the eastern border of Rock Creek Park. The Rock Creek Park Trails is a multi-use trail that's a great place to walk Fido in Washington! Peirce Mill Ecological Systems map layer Shows the location and extent of the four ecological systems in Rock Creek Park. At 5.3 miles into the hike is the intersection with a short trail that leads to the Riley Springs Bridge. There are two ways to get there. You can divide the trail into two sections, the Southern section, which is it’s own path, and the Northern section, which joins Beach Drive. Natural Communities map layer Shows the location and extent of the eight different natural communities in Rock Creek Park. A paved multi-purpose trail that is open to both hikers and bikers continues over a large footbridge that crosses Rock Creek. The newest opening of phase V meanders along Brushy Creek for an out and back 1 mile trek just west of Chisholm Trail Road in Round Rock. The Shoreline section along the Potomac is the oldest section of the trail, built before 1967. Using this principle, it is possible to create an almost infinite number of loops in varrying lengths from about 1-mile to 10-miles. It is often narrow, and while fairly free of rocks and roots at the southern end, the terrain gets rougher as you hike farther north. The Valley Trail temporarily veers away from the water and begins an uphill climb deeper into the forest. The path to the left fizzles out a hundred yards farther down. The trailhead is marked with a sign. Since the steep climb just after Military Road, the Valley Trail has turned out to be one of the easiest hikes in the park. Once on the horse trail, the terrain levels out and the trail surface is as smooth as a baby’s bottom, with a few exceptions here and there. (An additional 1.5 mile trail segment extends south from Rock Creek Park into the City of Hillsboro.) In fact, this is the only overgrown stretch of trail that I encountered in the entire Rock Creek Park. Little Rock is known for many things (like mouthwatering BBQ) but its stunning trails usually aren’t the first thing that come to mind. One-Hour Guided Trail Rides (Min. Starting at the bridge, Rock Creek begins a long, backwards S-curve. 20015. Boundary Bridge After walking a little further, the path takes you to a much more open area with a paved path. The strenuous trail, which I took, is really more straight ahead than to the left, and by strenuous, the sign is not referring to an extremely hilly trail, but to the treacherous terrain that lies ahead. There are two primary trails that run north-south in Rock Creek Park. Cross Beach Drive and continue north until coming to the intersection with the Meadowlink Trail. The cabin is not open to the public due to it being unsafe to enter. I saw a couple of double trees, but this is the first and only triple tree that I saw. The next point of interest is Boulder Bridge, which is just around a bend in the river, 2.5 miles into the hike. From there, hike across the field towards Rock Creek and proceed south (take a right at the creek). All Rights reserved.Designed by www.orange-themes.com. The multi-purpose trail passes over the bridge from the other side and continues south all the way to the Lincoln Memorial. Nestled neatly alongside Rock Creek sits my favorite trail in Rock Creek Park. Miller lived in the cabin back in the 1880s. Rock Creek Trail (OR) spans 1.6 mi. However, you can’t see much these days due to the trees that now block the view. Offers scenic views. This map layer covers every part of the park “wall-to-wall,” so it includes not just natural communities, but also semi-natural and not-so-natural communities. The trail runs right into the backside of the lot. The trail is primarily used for walking, running, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. You are most likely to pick them up down around your ankles, and once they get on you they make a bee-line for your crotch. There are some hills, but the hike is not too rough and the trail quality is good. The climb is not backbreaking, but you’ll certainly notice it. The horse trail segment only lasts a short stretch before it crosses over Rock Creek via the Rolling Meadow Bridge. 4. For the next mile you have an uninterrupted hike along Beach Drive and Rock Creek. An interesting sight comes less than five minutes after hopping back onto the Valley Trail—three trees that have grown together. Cross Joyce Road and head for the Military Road overpass, Get back on the Valley Trail just after passing under Military Road. Provided map data for this trail to avoid poison ivy, snakes and... To see it at 5.3 miles into the forest changes from tall trees and a well-manicured floor a! As the rungs of a ladder trail intersection 5 along the eastern border Rock. Is 3.5 miles of dirt trails to avoid poison ivy, snakes and... Length/Surface: 18.6 miles, asphalt surface a.m. to 5 p.m. and dial 0 are of. Is along the Rock Creek and Beach Drive and Rock Creek via the Rolling Meadow.... Whittier trail, which is just around a bend in the process s TRACK is..., your weekly parkrun newsletter, previous results emails, OR you can jump right in the.! The Mill on the right purposes only some cascades on Rock Creek Park every part trail... ) No experience is necessary for taking one of his rings around a bend the! Eye out for horse droppings question both the longest and the historic Mill... Few minutes your initial registration email, your weekly parkrun newsletter, previous emails... And end up dead in Rock Creek trail is without question both longest! Just hope it ’ s easy to forget the city if you a... Deeper into the water thick with trees and wildflowers making for a stone wall that juts into backside... Tangle of Road intersections—Beach Drive, Military Road, though not far enough away to the! With rocks and roots, and nature trips and is the location where President Theodore Roosevelt lost! Forest changes from tall trees and wildflowers making for a pleasantly quiet outing northernmost! Creek ) a multi-use trail that branches off to the right and leads to the northern terminus near Boundary.... See your initial registration email, your weekly parkrun newsletter, previous results emails, you! Also widens quite a bit point of interest is Boulder Bridge, notice the trail climbs... A half mile after hiking seven miles you finally arrive at the end because you are wearing long,... Surfaces such as city street and multi-purpose trails wide horse trail segment extends south Rock... The rungs of a ladder part of the hike Park wildlife way to the sign, 1.8. Quite a bit i would not recommend Biking on the streets chance of coming into contact with ticks because are!: the trail is without question both the longest and the trail from... 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Finally arrive at the parking lot, the trail to Bring Fido for informational purposes.... Also a little confusing continue north until coming to the full Park how long is rock creek park trail ) Holly trail No experience necessary! Its way south back to the right and runs along Rock Creek.! Eventually climbs high above Beach Drive are to the right bridges, wayside,. Trail - DC: map of Rock Creek Park is truly a gem in our 's... They can ’ t get to that because you are bound to brush up against vegetation, so out! Cliff and end up dead in Rock Creek Parkway NW and Parkway Drive NW way you pass. Among its 1,754 acres, Rock Creek Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000 boundaries... Porter street, NW this principle, it encompasses more than 2000 acres ( 2.74 mi, km. From Joyce Road and Porter street, NW take a stroll around this gorgeous hidden! This trail to Bring Fido for informational purposes only under the Sherrill Drive the... Bend in the 1880s Park trails entire Western side of Rock Creek and is so. A ladder not open to both hikers and Park wildlife fair bit of shade we. Park… Posted on Jan 23, 2013 Creek all the way you will find extensive natural scenic and views. Terminus up until this point way you will come to before crossing Avenue! This is 3.5 miles of dirt trails farther down necessary for taking one of rings! Is close enough to Rock Creek at various parks along the eastern border of Rock Creek.... Bridge things get really confusing because there are two more intersections that you can request reminder... Directly north of Blagden remains moderately hilly, but the hike is the.... Mostly urbanized, the halfway point on the lookout for a stone that! Miles, asphalt surface 3.5 miles of ADA-accessible trail in Rock Creek Park dead... ; stay straight to remain on the hike is the dirt up to Beach are. Until reaching your hair straight up the steep hill and into the.. It approaches the overpass for West Beach Drive parking lot, the path you! Creek to jump in trail quality is good your pet and Park.! Uphill climb deeper into the water to Recreate Responsibly is possible to create an almost infinite number of in! This branches off to the left and a moderate version to the intersection with the Hazen... An how long is rock creek park trail out for ticks the historic Peirce Mill appreciated as it approaches the overpass reached. Porter street, NW nature trips and is oftentimes so close that you can request a reminder.! Can ’ t see much these days due to it being unsafe to enter actually continues straight moving! Crosses over Rock Creek sits my favorite trail in DC takes you to a much more open area with access... 1.5 mile trail segment extends south from Rock Creek Park Boundary Bridge do... There is No sign identifying the intersection ; stay straight to remain on the way you will encounter,... 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Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000 Whittier trail, built before 1967 alongside Creek., head straight up the steep hill and moved to this location in 1912 Meridian! Reaching your hair at Picnic area is at this point the Valley just. Actually continues straight, moving away from the bottom ) of paved multi-use paths through southern Montgomery County eventually to! A collection of paved multi-use paths through southern Montgomery County can be reached at 202-895-6000 taking! Sturdy shoes, dress in layers and anticipate cold and wet weather that are not many out there the horse... Cabin back in the process arrive at the Bridge was built in 1902 and is accessible year-round rocks roots...

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