Nice trail into the woods, not a harsh incline (my husband had back surgery and managed well). The signs at the beginning of the trail are miss leading! States dogs must be on a leash, then 1 mile later as you approach the wooden bridge/path, big signs says no dogs beyond this point! We were naughty and proceeded on as we were encouraged by some locals that said they bring their dogs all the time. Got a few dirty looks later on our walk...that put a damper on our walk.
I started at Kemper Park area entering the woods to the right of the parking area. No true markings and trails criss cross many times, so I just explored. The trails are hard pack with a few areas of rock gardens. A decent amount of uphill, but not steep or too difficult. My tracker stated 6.5 miles of woods. I then came out on the Monticello trail and walked 4 miles ( in and out) of flat crushed stone/ wood bridges to the welcome center. Overall a relatively easy hike with very few people in the woods and much more traffic on the easy trail.
Very cool easy grade boardwalk trail along the side of The mountain above Monticello at Charlottesville. The hike ends at a lovely arboretum with a network of forest and field trails all its own. I suggest starting from that park so that the return trip is downhill! Views are woods except in winter when you can see more of the Blue Ridge through the leafless trees.
Wayne G. on Saunders-Monticello Trail
Well maintained, easy walk, wide paths.