Cedar Trail, Deer Trail, and Heron Trail Loop is a 2.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Alexandria, Virginia that features a great forest setting and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.
Metro Friendly Huntley Meadows Park ranks as one of the metro area's largest close-in parks. Whether you come to hike, wildlife watch, or simply to relax, Huntley Meadows Park will provide you with a premiere nature experience for the entire family! This Fairfax County Park's key attraction is a beaver-created wetland with excellent viewing stations. Also, the visitor center has excellent exhibits at this park! Huntley Meadows lies in a wet lowland that was carved out by an ancient meander of the Potomac River. The resulting freshwater wetland is one of the rarest habitats left in Fairfax County. Acre for acre, a healthy wetland supports more life than almost any other habitat. Wetlands also purify polluted waters and control the destructive power of floods and storms Its centerpiece is a 500-acre freshwater marsh-the area's largest-surrounded by mostly deciduous woodlands. The result is a protected natural habitat with a remarkable array of plants and animals. Huntley is an attractive year-round hiking venue, especially for people keen on natural history. Some of the best wildlife watching in the Washington metropolitan area is enjoyed here. From the ½ mile wetland boardwalk trail and observation tower, people have excellent views of beavers, frogs, dragonflies and herons. Huntley Meadows is well known as a prime birding spot, with over 200 species identified in the park.
I always filter my trails by those that are dog friendly. This trail is listed as dog friendly, and it is not. Dogs aren't allowed on most of the trail, which doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
Very pretty especially at sunset. Hard to do a run because The Heron trail is a no jogging zone. But its definitely worth a trip (bring binoculars).
Wouldn't recommend for dog owners. Dogs are not allowed on a large portion of the trail which means you walk to a certain point and have to turn around and head back. Trail was overcrowded with families and children that did not have good dog manners. With all the other options for dog friendly trails in the area, I'd skip this one.
Winter walk unsatisfying with dead trees and hardly any animals out. Early summer has birds, beavers, turtles, etc. If you're looking for a peaceful and quiet walk, you may want to go early in the morning because there are lots of noisy kids and families.
I brought my son's cub scout troop here in late August and they loved it. The trail and boardwalk are wide enough for a large group and there's plenty to see. We must have seen 10 snapping turtles, dragonflies of every color, and the marsh mallows were is spectacular bloom. The boys were also happy to see beaver lodges and a great blue heron. The visitor center has a nice little museum and restrooms, which makes for a handy stop after the trip. Great intro site with creature comforts for the younger ones but plenty of wildlife to keep the older ones interested too.