2017 Hikes

  • Hike 58: On October 28, four members of the group took a 4.7-mile loop in Great Falls Park.  The trail began at the Great Falls Park visitor center and the 4.7-mile loop hike  traversed along Mather Gorge with many magnificent views of the Potomac River.
  • Hike 58: On October 14, three members of the group took a 4.4-mile hike in Rock Creek Park's Northern Section.
  • Hike 57: The hike on April 22 was to Great Falls Park (Virginia). The trail began at the Great Falls Park visitor center and the 4.7-mile loop hike  traversed along Mather Gorge with many magnificent views of the Potomac River.
  • Hike 56: On April 8, four members of the group took a hike along the C&O Canal and Section B of the Billy Goat Trail. We began hiking north on the towpath until we reached the start of Section B. This is a very nice trail with beautiful views of the Potomac River and some challenging rock scrambles. After finishing Section B, we returned to the towpath near the bridge that leads to Old Angler's Inn. We proceeded south on the towpath until we returned to our cars. This 4.5-mile hike is a portion of Hike No. 15 in 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles (2nd Edition) by Paul Elliot.
  • Hike 55: On March 11, four members took a 4.5-mile loop hike in Rock Creek Park's rocky central section.
  • Hike 54: On February 25, five members took a 4.9-mile hike in Seneca Creek State Park.
  • Hike 53: On January 28, six members took a 4.4-mile hike in Rock Creek Park's Northern Section.

2016 Hikes

  • Hike 52: On November 12, nine members took the Gold Mine Loop. Starting at the parking lot opposite Old Angler's Inn, the group enjoyed a lovely 5.2-mile hike past the remains of the Maryland Mine, reaching and crossing the C&O Canal at the Great Falls Inn, and returning to the starting point via the C&O towpath.
  • Hike 51: On April 23, four members took a 4.7-mile hike in the Lake Frank area. During the hike we saw a baby copperhead and a barred owl. This is one of the hikes in Hikes in the Washington Region Part A: Northern Maryland Counties
  • Hike 50: On March 26, four members took a 5.5-mile hike on the blue-blazed Northern Peaks trail at Sugarloaf Mountain, a Registered Natural Landmark because of its geological interest and striking beauty. The loop hike was strenuous with total ascents of 1,000 feet. Because this was the 50th hike of the Burleith Hiking Group, we held a small celebration on the trail with each hiker receiving a small glass of Finnish Lapponia cloudberry liqueur. The views from the top of Sugarloaf and from the White Rocks overlook were spectacular. We spent a good amount of time taking in the perfect blue sky day while watching the turkey vultures circle effortlessly around.
  • Hike 49: On March 12, six members took a 4.7-mile hike in Great Falls Park (Virginia). This hike was of moderate difficulty with moments of complexity. The views of Mather Gorge on the Potomac were stunning as were the views of Difficult Run. We saw four wildflowers on this hike: periwinkle (Vinca minor), spring-beauty (Claytonia virginica), lesser cenandine (Ranunculus ficaria), and skunk cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus). This is hike No. 7 in the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club's Hikes in the Washington Region Part B.
  • Hike 48: On February 27, six members took a 6.1-mile hike in the Blockhouse Point Conservation Park. It was a beautiful sunny day, and the hike included two viewpoints overlooking the Potomac River. The trail was well marked and maintained, except for the last mile which was an unblazed, unmaintained, soggy, and thorn-infested trail that paralleled the C&O Canal. Nonetheless, all the intrepid hikers enjoyed the outing. This is hike No. 6 in the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club's Hikes in the Washington Region Part A.
  • Hike 47: On February 13, three members took a hike along the Glover Archbold Trail, the Wesley Heights Trail, and the Battery Kemble Trail to Battery Kemble Park and back. This 4-mile hike took 2 hours. (The original plan to hike in Blockhouse Point Conservation Park was altered due to cold weather and snow on the ground. This hike was be taken up two weeks later.)
  • Hike 46: On January 9, four members took the Gold Mine Loop. Starting at the parking lot opposite Old Angler's Inn, the group enjoyed a lovely 5.2-mile hike past the remains of the Maryland Mine, reaching and crossing the C&O Canal at the Great Falls Inn, and returning to the starting point via the C&O towpath.

2015 Hikes

  • Hike 45: On December 12, seven members of the group took a 3-mile hike on Scotts Run Nature Preserve, on the Virginia side of the Potomac River just northwest of the Capitol Beltway.
  • Hike 44: On November 14, seven members (and Ambo the chocolate lab) took a 3-mile hike on Section A of the Billy Goat Trail. It was a beautiful day for a hike. The hike itself had a few rock scrambles but was on the whole very nice.  Ambo, as Labrador Retrievers are want to do, enjoyed swimming in the Potomac River and the C&O Canal. We saw Canada geese, mallard ducks, and a beautiful great blue heron along the trail.
  • Hike 43: On October 24, four members and two guests took a 4.8-mile hike at Riverbed Park in Virginia.  Beginning at the Great Falls Park visitor center, we followed the bank of the Potomac River to the Riverbed Park visitor center and beyond, before returning via the same route. The birds seen on the trek included mallard ducks, Canada geese, double-crested cormorants, American coots, and a great blue heron. It was a nice cool fall day and the colors of the leaves on the trees were fantastic.
  • Hike 42: On October 10, two memberstook a 4-mile hike at Huntley Meadows in Fairfax, Virginia.  Highlights were a belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon), a great blue heron (Ardea herodias), and lots of beautiful turtles, including red-eared sliders (Trachemys scripta elegans) sunning themselves on logs. It was a beautiful fall day for a hike.
  • Hike 41:  On June 13, four members took a 5.5-mile hike through sections of Rock Creek Park and the C&O Canal near Burleith. Beginning traveling west on the Whitehaven Trail, the hike proceeded north on the Glover Archbold Trail, west on the Wesley Heights Trail, and south-east on the Battery Kemble Trail. The hike followed that trail downhill along Battery Kemble Run's wooded ravine, until the bottom where Battery Kemble Run ducks under Canal Road. The hikers went through the tunnel under Canal Road to reach Fletcher's Cove and the C&O Canal towpath. The hike then followed the towpath towards Washington until, just past Georgetown University, it went through the tunnel under the canal and Canal Road. The tunnel led to the Glover Archbold trail and on to Reservoir Road and Burleith. This hike appears in no trail books, but we call it the Local Loop because it starts and ends in Burleith.
  • Hike 40: On April 25, two members took a 4-mile hike in Scott's Run Nature Preserve in Fairfax County.
  • Hike 39: On April 11, four members took a 3.7-mile hike along the Underground Railroad Experience Trail (Rachel Carson Greenway Trail Corridor). This is Hike No. 8 in Take A Hike Washington DC by Theresa Dowell Blackinton.
  • Hike 38: On March 28, three members took a 6-mile hike along the Perimeter Trail in Greenbelt Park. The hike began and ended at the ranger station. This is Hike No. 19 in 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles (2nd Edition) by Paul Elliot.
  • Hike 37: On February 14, two members took a hike in Riverbend Park. The hike began at the Great Falls Park Visitor Center, followed the Potomac River north to the Riverbend Park Visitor Center, and then returned to the starting point.  Many species of aquatic foul were observed in the Potomac River.
  • Hike 36: On January 10, three members took a hike in Great Falls Park on the Virginia side. The hike began at the Visitor Center and followed the River Trail offering magnificent views of Mather Gorge. After a little less than 2 miles, the group turned around and retraced its steps. At the end of the hike, we went to one of the overlooks to marvel at Great Falls covered with snow and ice. Although the temperature was below freezing, there was little wind, and it was a very nice hike indeed. All three hikers sported spikes on their shoes to guarantee firm footing on the snow- and ice-covered trails.

2014 Hikes

  • Hike 35: On December 13, four members of the group took a 4.4-mile hike in Rock Creek Park's Northern Section. This hike featured the Rock Creek Nature Center, a Civil War fort, the east bank of Rock Creek, and wooded hills on the west side of the creek. A description of this hike can be found in the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club's Hikes in the Washington Region Part C (3rd Edition, 2011).
  • Hike 34: On November 8, six members took a 6.5-mile hike through sections of Rock Creek Park and the C&O Canal near Burleith. Beginning traveling west on the Whitehaven Trail, the hike proceeded north on the Glover Archbold Trail, west on the Wesley Heights Trail, and south-east on the Battery Kemble Trail. The hike followed that trail downhill along Battery Kemble Run's wooded ravine, until near the bottom, just before Battery Kemble Run ducks under Canal Road, the hikers veered to the right and followed a somewhat overgrown former trolley right-of-way for 1.5 miles, passing the Palisades Recreation Center, crossing Arizona Avenue on a concrete footbridge, until they reached Galena Place, where they turned left again at Potomac Avenue. They followed Potomac one block to its end and took a steep path downhill to meet the Capital Crescent Trail. That trail led across an iron bridge to wooden steps leading down to the C&O Canal towpath. The hike then followed the towpath towards Washington until just past Georgetown University it went through the tunnel under the canal and Canal Road. The tunnel led to the Glover Archbold trail and on to Reservoir Road and Burleith. This hike appears in no trail books, but we call it the Local Loop because it starts and ends in Burleith.
  • Hike 33: On October 25, five members took a 4.9-mile hike in Piscataway Park on the Maryland side of the lower Potomac. The hike was an easy stroll and explored the Potomac shore in areas maintained by the National Park Service, Accokeek Foundation, and Alice Ferguson Foundation. The park is situated across the river from Mount Vernon and was established to protect the natural and cultural elements along the Maryland shoreline and to preserve the view across the river from Mount Vernon. This is hike No. 9 in the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club's Hikes in the Washington Region Part C.
  • Hike 32: On Sunday, September 21, six members took a hike along the C&O Canal and Section B of the Billy Goat Trail. We began hiking north on the towpath until we reached the start of Section B. This is a very nice trail with beautiful views of the Potomac River and some challenging rock scrambles. After finishing Section B, we returned to the towpath near the bridge that leads to Old Angler's Inn. We proceed south on the towpath until we returned to our cars. This 5-mile hike is a portion of Hike No. 15 in 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles (2nd Edition) by Paul Elliot.
  • Hike 31: On June 7, four members took a 4.5-mile hike through the rocky central portion of Rock Creek Park. We began the hike at the Rock Creek Nature Center and finished 2 hours and 20 minutes later. It was a beautiful day and very comfortable under the shade of the trees. This hike is Hike No. 10 in 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles (2nd Edition) by Paul Elliot.
  • Hike 30: On April 26, two members took a 5.5-mile hike starting from the Green Lot in Burleith. The route was identical to Hike 33, except that at the base of the Battery Kemble Trail, they navigated some large rocks and crept through a tunnel under Canal Road to reach Fletcher's Cover and the C&O Canal. The path followed the Whitehaven trail to the Glover Archbold trail to the Wesley Heights trail to the Battery Kemble trail. At the base of the Battery Kemble trail, they navigated some large rocks and crept through a tunnel under Canal Road to reach Fletcher's Cove. This cut a mile off the loop known as the Local Loop. The hike took 3 hours.
  • Hike 29: On April 12, four members plus a guest from Ireland took a very nice 4.8-mile trek in the Bull Run Mountains Conservancy. The trailhead began at elevation 394 ft., and we hiked steadily upward until we reached the White Rocks Overlook at elevation 1,311 ft. It was a beautiful spring day, and the view from the top was fantastic. We took a different route on the way back along the beautiful Catletts Branch. To complete the hike, we crossed an unguarded railroad crossing just before a huge freight train passed. This was one of the nicest hikes we have taken. It is hike No. 15 in Falcon Publishing's Best Hikes Near Washington, D.C. by Bill and Mary Burnham. This hike was rated "easy" but with the over 900 ft. of elevation gain, it was more like "moderate." The hike took 3 hours and 30 minutes to complete.
  • Hike 28: On March 22, two members took a 4.6-mile hike in Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge. The hike took place on a gorgeous early spring day. The highlight of the hike was spotting bald eagles (first an adult and later a juvenile that had not yet developed its white head). This hike is Hike No. 33 in 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles (1st Edition) by Paul Elliott and took 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete.
  • Hike 27: On March 8, three members took a 5-mile hike in the National Arboretum. After a long cold winter, it was a beautiful sunny day for a hike.
  • Hike 26: On February 22, five members took a short but memorable hike in the National Zoo. One member got to see Bao Bao, the new young panda cub, but all got nice views of an adult panda. Other highlights included the cheetahs, anteater, and fascinating birds. The weather was fabulous.
  • Hike 25: On February 8, three members took the Gold Mine Loop. Starting at the parking lot opposite Old Angler's Inn, the group enjoyed a lovely 5.2-mile hike past the remains of the Maryland Mine, reaching and crossing the C&O Canal at the Great Falls Inn, and returning to the starting point via the C&O towpath. After having had to cancel this hike on two previous occasions, it was rewarding to finally be able to take this hike. With all the leaves down, there were many rewarding views of the canal and the Potomac River.