Nestled neatly alongside Rock Creek sits my favorite trail in Rock Creek Park. 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. The Valley Trail continues on the right side of the road immediately after the overpass. This is because creeks, streams, and rivers are usually at the lowest point on the terrain, and whenever traveling away from one you will be heading uphill. 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. Thus, check the fronts of your legs every few minutes. Again, this is not the case. 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. There are many connector trails running mostly east-west joining the Western Ridge Trail with the Valley Trail. This is also the location of Pulpit Rock, an odd shaped rock formation that overlooks Rock Creek. The multi-purpose trail passes over the bridge from the other side and continues south all the way to the Lincoln Memorial. ), it encompasses more than 2000 acres (3 mi , 8 km ). More. (202) 895-6000 Title, 5200 Glover Rd, NW Western Ridge Trail is a mostly smooth trail traversing the entire western side of Rock Creek Park. For more detailed trail information, please visit TrailLink.com. At the far end of the picnic area is the intersection with the Melvin Hazen Trail. This is 3.5 miles from the parking lot, the halfway point on the hike. If you have a ride waiting, this is the end of journey. How to have a safe hike in Rock Creek Park. 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. Rock Creek Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000. Rock Creek Park administrative offices can be reached at 202-895-6000. Bring and use a map or guide. 3. Keep your dog leashed at all times to protect both your pet and park wildlife. Don't forget paper barcode! Be on the lookout for an intersection marked with a Valley Trail sign. 5. It is about 5 miles back to Peirce Mill. This forms a 12-mile loop, which is probably too adventurous for most people, but if you have the stamina and seven hours to kill, it’s a great hike. Dogs are also able to use this trail. The first is with a trail that branches off to the right and leads to a neighborhood. 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. Think of them as the sides of a ladder. The cabin is not open to the public due to it being unsafe to enter. 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. I saw a couple of double trees, but this is the first and only triple tree that I saw. At this point the Valley Trail narrows considerably and remains so for the next half mile. A paved multi-purpose trail that is open to both hikers and bikers continues over a large footbridge that crosses Rock Creek. As you cross the bridge, notice the trail sign posted on the far side. 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. Trail end points: Chestnut St. NW at Oregon Ave. NW and Rock Creek Parkway NW and Parkway Drive NW. 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. Happy Rock to Shoal Creek Trail is a 2.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Riverside, Missouri that features a river and is good for all skill levels. Rock Creek Park is not an enclosed park with an entrance gate, so the roads that run through it are public streets. The trail now runs right along Rock Creek and is oftentimes so close that you can jump right in the water. 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. States: District of Columbia. As it approaches the overpass for West Beach Drive, the Valley Trail follows Rock Creek very closely. For the next mile you have an uninterrupted hike along Beach Drive and Rock Creek. The cabin belonged to a poet named Joaquin Miller, who was a popular character in Washington. The climb is not backbreaking, but you’ll certainly notice it. There are two ways to get there. Using this principle, it is possible to create an almost infinite number of loops in varrying lengths from about 1-mile to 10-miles. You can walk right down to the water. Taking a right puts you on the Boundary Trail, which leads north to Grubb Road. Continue on the bike path for roughly .25 miles before jumping back on the dirt up to the Maryland border. 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. The trail is primarily used for walking, running, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. The Rock Creek Park Trails is a multi-use trail that's a great place to walk Fido in Washington! 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. Stay on the trail to avoid poison ivy, snakes, and ticks. The Valley Trail is now a very narrow trail, and the forest changes from tall trees and a well-manicured floor into a jungle. Relevance 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.. 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. Think of these connectors as the rungs of a ladder. Let’s take a stroll around this gorgeous trail hidden in the middle of the city. Northern trailhead for the Western Ridge Trail, © 2020 Copyright Steven L. Markos. 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. If you get confused, just remember to stay on the wide horse trail. The main section of the park comprises 1754 acres (2.74 mi , 7.10 km ), along the Rock Creek Valley. The portion of the trail in Rock Creek Regional Park terminates at Lake Needwood where row boats, pedal boats and canoes can be rented in season. Jungle-like terrain just north of Military Road. Ecological Systems map layer Shows the location and extent of the four ecological systems in Rock Creek Park. 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. At the 1.75-mile mark on the hike is the intersection with the Theodore Roosevelt Trail. The trail is 0.9 miles long, a 1.8 mile round-trip. This is the shortest and easiest way to go. Valley Trail is close enough to Rock Creek to jump in. A traffic free Saturday on scenic Beach Drive. Some sections of the trail are used for horse riding so keep an eye out for horse droppings. 20015. There is no sign identifying the intersection; stay straight to remain on the Valley Trail. 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. Favorite places to start a hike: 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. In fact, it might not even be there when you hike the trail because the National Park Service plans to move it to Picnic Area #14. The parking lot is near the corner of Shoemaker and Spring of Freedom streets. Don't rely on trail signs, as there are not many out there. Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has generously provided map data for this trail to Bring Fido for informational purposes only. Cross Joyce Drive and take the paved multi-purpose trail towards the Military Road overpass. Wear sturdy shoes, dress in layers and anticipate cold and wet weather. It is currently in a floodplain. Narrow path on the hikers-only section of the Valley Trail. The Valley Trail widens near the intersection with the Holly Trail. They are the Western Ridge Trail (green on the park map) and the Valley Trail (orange on the park map). Restrooms: Starting at the bridge, Rock Creek begins a long, backwards S-curve. After hiking a half mile from the parking lot, you finally reach Bluff Bridge. Recently Updated Picnic areas 6-10 All Rights reserved.Designed by www.orange-themes.com. Trail marker on the Rock Creek trail, Kankakee River State Park. As always, check the Rock Creek Park Website for any safety advisories before embarking on the hike. From its southern terminus up until this point the trail has been a hikers-only trail. Length: 8.5 miles. For general information call 202-895-6070 Wednesday - Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and dial 0. The next point of interest is Boulder Bridge, which is just around a bend in the river, 2.5 miles into the hike. One day somebody might find it—I just hope it’s not Gollum. Rock Creek Park Hiking Map, Valley Trail route in pink (click to enlarge), Length: 7 miles, one-way The trailhead is marked with a sign. For general information call 202-895-6070 Wednesday - Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and dial 0. Along this approximate 7.75 mile mostly concrete trail you will find extensive natural scenic and peaceful views. Hiker and horseback rider segment of the Valley Trail. One-Hour Guided Trail Rides (Min. Below is a link to the full park map. Before you go, review how to Recreate Responsibly. I’m not sure what this is, but there were a lot of mills along Rock Creek, so maybe this is a remnant of one. Trail Stats Among its 1,754 acres, Rock Creek has over 20 miles of dirt trails. Not long after passing the restroom, and just about where Beach Drive crosses a bridge to get back to the west side of Rock Creek, the Valley Trail merges with a horse trail. The trail emerges from the forest onto Beach Drive just south of the Park Police Station. Since the steep climb just after Military Road, the Valley Trail has turned out to be one of the easiest hikes in the park. Nature Center Cross the bridge and turn left on the multi-purpose trail. 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. However, you can’t see much these days due to the trees that now block the view. I’m not sure what this is, but there were a lot of mills along Rock Creek, so maybe this is … (Matt McClain/The Washington Post) By this point the Valley Trail is as flat as a pancake, and it also widens quite a bit. A hikers-only trail takes a smaller footbridge over Melvin Hazin Creek. Although this area is mostly urbanized, the trail follows a mainly wooded route along the Rock Creek Stream Valley. The turn is marked by a sign. Prior to the intersection is a great view of some cascades on Rock Creek. Boundary Bridge The Valley Trail is straight ahead. The Rock Creek Trail - DC: Map of Rock Creek Trail in DC. Both the Valley Trail and the Meadowlink Trail are listed on the sign, but the only arrow points to the left, making it appear as if both trails continue to the left. Below is a link to the full park map. However, the Valley Trail actually continues straight, moving away from the creek in the process. Unfortunately, Beach Drive crosses over Rock Creek on Boulder Bridge and comes between the creek and the trail, so you now get a view of the road for the next mile. See your initial registration email, your weekly parkrun newsletter, previous results emails, or you can request a reminder email. Trail characteristics: Some hilly parts. Photos of Rock Creek Park - 42 Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Time: 4.5 hours Little Rock is known for many things (like mouthwatering BBQ) but its stunning trails usually aren’t the first thing that come to mind. From there, hike across the field towards Rock Creek and proceed south (take a right at the creek). Counties: Washington. I would not recommend this section during the week. Once in the woods, it’s easy to forget the city. The Valley Trail temporarily veers away from the water and begins an uphill climb deeper into the forest. Tips. Washington DC's Rock Creek Trail is a collection of paved multi-use paths and on-road bike route. 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. There are two primary trails that run north-south in Rock Creek Park. Feb 4, 2014. by Doug. Difficulty: Easy to strenuous. It was originally located on Meridian Hill and moved to this location in 1912 when Meridian Hill Park was being developed. 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. From the parking area, head straight up the steep hill and into the woods on Western Ridge Trail. In fact, this is the only overgrown stretch of trail that I encountered in the entire Rock Creek Park. Maryland's 14 mile long Rock Creek Trail is a collection of paved multi-use paths through southern Montgomery County. The Valley Trail is the dirt trail to the right that leads up to Beach Drive. Natural Communities map layer Shows the location and extent of the eight different natural communities in Rock Creek Park. There are two more intersections that you will come to before crossing Blagden Avenue about a quarter mile past the second Meadowlink Trail intersection. This map layer covers every part … It is now much wider, so there is less of a chance of coming into contact with ticks. 1. tweet share share. 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. You are bound to brush up against vegetation, so watch out for ticks. Although this area is mostly urbanized, the trail follows a mainly wooded route along the Rock Creek stream valley. There are long and short versions of hikes in this section, each passing historic spots such as the Joaquin Miller log cabin and a beloved stop for photographers—the rock-covered Boulder Bridge. Drinking water: Yes, at various parks along the trail. 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. The trail is very narrow, filled with rocks and roots, and has a steep drop off on one side. Posted on Jan 23, 2013. 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 … Rock Creek Park’s TRACK trail is located along Rock Creek between Broad Branch Road and Porter Street, NW. Miller lived in the cabin back in the 1880s. This part of the hike had a fair bit of shade which we appreciated as it was a hot summer day when we visited. Stairs along the Valley Trail (looking up from the bottom). Cross the street and follow the worn path that runs along Rock Creek until you get to Joyce Road. 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. 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