Seneca Creek Greenway Lower Trail is a 23.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Poolesville, MD that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Wooded natural trail along Great Seneca Creek The Seneca Creek Greenway Trail follows Great Seneca Creek in Montgomery County, MD. It is a wooded, natural surface trail that extends 26 miles from the Potomac River to the Damascus Regional Park trail system. The trail is intersected by several roads, most of which have areas to park. Parking locations are noted on the map. Using these crossroads, you may tailor the distance of the hike. You may choose an out-and-back hike or a point-to-point hike if you have two cars. Some sections of the trail allow horses and bikes and some do not. For detailed instructions and trail notes, check www.senecatrail.info. This is the lower section of the trail. It extends from the Riley's Lock trailhead on the Potomac River to the crossing at Riffleford Road, which is off of Rte 28 near Darnestown, MD. This section as about 11 miles long. Some of the trail is on the Seneca Creek floodplain and can be very muddy after a rain or a thaw.
Walked from C&O Canal (Riley's lock) to Berryville Rd.
The C&O parking area and Seneca creek mouth are crowded! But plenty of parking; and a functional water fountain right at the canal.
The trail portion from C&O canal to River Road isn't clearly marked - going North along canal, cross the creek, and suddenly a footpath appears on your right that crosses the Canal. Follow it a bit, and and old mill ruin greets you, along with a 0milepost for the Greenway.
The Greenway then follows a gravel country road along Seneca Creek; which is not really a hike in my book; hence only 4 stars. Once crossing River Road, the trail is on the hardtop River Road to cross the creek, then an immediate Left onto Old Seneca Road--not really pleasant as you're on asphalt for another quarter mile or so. There are blue poles that evidently serve as blazes along the shoulder til the trailhead on the left takes the path back into the woods. Big sign, can't miss it - also room for a car or two to park on the shoulder opposite the trailhead.
The 1.3 miles to Berryville road are terrific --easy, fast hiking, a few bridges and lots of seclusion.
Enjoyed it and will go back to do the rest of the lower portion up to Rt 28, and then finish the middle and upper portions including the Magruder Trail connections.
Walked this today from Black Rock Mill Road to The Potomac River. Well marked and easy to follow, though a bit weedy in places. Saw only two other people on the entire stretch even on this holiday weekend. More surprisingly, saw no canoes or kayaks until I got within a 1/2 mile of the mouth of Seneca Creek at Seneca Landing. Saw a couple deer, squirrels, and a chipmunk. The chorus of singing birds all along this trail are a treat. Have now walked The Seneca Greenway Trail in two sections on two consecutive days from Rt. 355. Considering this trail's proximity to the DC metro area, it's surprisingly rural, woodsy, and, amazingly, very few road crossings. If you're looking for a trail to find some solitude without making a long drive to get there, this trail is a good choice.
Great place for a variety of activities. As in the other review I didn't see any canoeing. Lots of beautiful scenery and places to stroll. Dog friendly, a definite plus. For those interested in group sports or working out, there are lots of options. Signs could be a little more detailed and visible as it is a little difficult to find the routes you're looking for on the first visit. Well manicured and not too infested with bugs flying around.