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closed due to shut down but a lot of still a great place to park and walk mount vernon trail.

Did this trail the other day and it was fun. Very cool, a stream valley trail type hike. I followed the recommendation of another review to do the trail backwards, I agree with this because the mid to end of the trail you end up in the city and it's nice to get lunch there. Just make sure you are walking on the west side of the 66 (walking with traffic) to get back otherwise you will end up stranded and having to loop back if you walk against the traffic going East. This adds on another 2 miles or so lol. But it was so fun and you get to scramble a bit and see multiple waterfalls. Be careful because you dont see blue marks for a while around the time you end up seriously rock scrambling before hitting the final waterfall (assuming you do the trail in reverse, otherwise this will be your first waterfall. Oh and you might get a little wet, just a little though.

hiking
16 days ago

Very muddy but a good trail for kids.

I agree with all the reviews here. I both love this place and am disgusted by the way folks (particularly in the summer months) treat what has been set aside as a “nature preserve.” If you get the chance to enjoy the beauty and solitude of this natural escape by the Potomac, and feel strongly about protecting it, please contact Riverbend Nature Center about participating in Scotts Run clean ups or collect trash when you can and report any illegal activity. And if you get a chance to hike to the river overlooks watch out for my father’s memorial bench along the trail (the one with a river view when the leaves fall), have a seat and enjoy the woods!

I hiked the outer loop counterclockwise yesterday, 11/7. It was very muddy at the start because of the recent rain but the rest of the trail wasn't bad. Overall it was a nice hike right in the city and I very much enjoyed it. Will got back and complete the little but the inner trail that I didn't get to.

I went after work on a weekday around 3pm and it was mostly empty save for some trail runners here and there. I mostly walked alone the entire time.

Roosevelt. Outdoors. Perfection near the city. Also saw a crew of corgis as we entered the island : ).

Nice little loop with a section that has great river views. Went during the fall and most of the trail is wooded, so I really enjoyed the hike. Mostly flat, but some rocky hill sections near the river. Parking is limited during peak times.

hiking
2 months ago

Starts and ends well but kind of tough to find the markers in the middle! But gorgeous scenery and nice hike!

hiking
2 months ago

Look....Don’t underestimate the difficulty of this trail. Although it’s listed as moderate, there are many obstacles such as fallen trees, overgrown shrubbery, and huge boulders that will render this trail not for the faint of heart. I recommend not going right after it rained because the rocks were very slippery and there were lots of mud puddles. My friends and I and my dog had a wonderful time even though some of us fell in the creek and or mud. I would definitely go again.

hiking
3 months ago

Fun trail between Key Bridge and Chain Bridge. It is overgrown and as you approach Chain Bridge it is very poorly marked. Does remind me of the Billy Goat Trail at times. Lots of rocks and creeks to cross. Beautiful views. We walked back to Key Bridge on the tow path.

a nice trail out of the way of the city. very flat and a pretty simple, if ultimately peaceful walk. a little hard to get to without a car... walk about 10 minutes from the Rosslyn metro station

trail running
3 months ago

A trail oasis in the middle of the city.

walking
3 months ago

I don’t know why people are saying it’s five miles. My tracker from the car was 4.0 miles which includes the 3-4 min we walked slightly off the trail.
All in all pretty manageable but if you have a kid under like 6-7 the far end when you go under the freeway you may need to carry them.
Pros: easy access in the heart of DC area, mostly shaded, scenic.
Cons: Unless you have headphones on you spend half of it listening to the cars on the road and the airplanes taking off from DCA.

9-22-2018 Beautiful day for a hike. The four of us started out in the parking lot on Canal street(the down the ramp) We crossed the little foot bridge by the bathroom and took a left onto the upper gravel trail deciding the lower paved trail is for road bikes. following this trail for about 3.5 miles we wound up in Georgetown Waterfront Park. We continued along the water front (which was our first mistake) we should have stayed up, so when we got to the bridge we were standing Under it, so had to figure out how to get UP to bridge. When we got to top, we walked across only to figure out we were on the wrong side, so had to do U turn back under and across the parkway. Back on the trail we walked another 7.5 miles along the Potomac through the weeds and over some pretty good rock scrambles. Thank goodness the river wasn't any higher or not sure what we would have done. As is was we had to get wet crossing in a few places. All of our devices said total miles were closer to 11.

The trail is not maintained, overgrown vegetation in most of the trail areas where you can barely walk through it. The trail ends short about 3 miles due to fallen tree and now way to get to the other side unless you kayak through the waters. At the end I returned to my vehicle door crow barred at the top/failed attempt to break in my vehicle in the main parking lot. A lot of runners, kayaking, bikers. Seemed safe, just never know

Great location to start/end a long run. Started here and then ran across Teddy Roosevelt bridge and into Georgetown. Came back and finished with another lap around Teddy Roosevelt island. This is one of my favorite monuments.

hiking
4 months ago

We took 3 kids, ages 9,6, and 4, and 2 dogs. The trail was fun but too long for the kids in the heat of August. It was 5 miles, not 3. A 3 mile trail would have been perfect, there were lots of downed trees which my kids like to climb over, river crossings and steep creek beds that we needed to use ropes to pull ourselves up. The dogs were able to scramble up ok but definitely fell a couple of times. We needed the GPS a few times when we lost the path. It’s well marked for the most part but definitely not each turn. We may do it again when the fall weather arrives;)

hiking
4 months ago

Poorly marked

First, this is nowhere near three miles. We followed the route on the map exactly and it’s a full FIVE miles. So know what you’re in for.

This is a great hike if you’re looking for a moderate challenge with varying terrain.

I took a 4yo (girl), 10yo (girl), and 12yo (boy). I had to carry the 4yo at times. Several of the stream crossing are challenging. There are no bridges and so you have to hop/scramble across the rocks. One point requires ropes to descend and ascend a wide ditch. My 4yo piggybacked me for that part.

No way horses are doing this btw. Or mountain bikes. Lots of downed trees and rock hopping/scrambling.

The trail is also very poorly marked at portions. Without the gps and trail map, it would have been entirely unclear where to go.

In short, a fun, interesting, moderately challenging hike with a fair bit of variation that’s good for kids (if they’re up for five miles and you can carry little ones if/when needed).

Very pretty, but would not advise on bike. Very overgrown in some places, and occasionally narrow and dangerous

It’s a lovely trail, very easy and close to dc. Excellent for weekend mornings, but get there early because parking is limited.

Great way to leave the city for a few moments. Great tribute to Teddy.

hiking
5 months ago

A lot trees blocking the trials.

has some nice swamp areas and birding but the traffic noise is a bit of a distraction

5 months ago

if the loop is done counter-clockwise, your journey is going to be more quiet. Just know as you approach the water at Stubblefield Falls the rock scramble is very steep. The Scotts Run Falls were smelly and loaded with trash. There were people drinking beer and some of them looked underage. Lots and lots of people swimming in spite of warning signs not to swim. one girl was naked! Pretty day as was quiet until I got to Scotts Run Falls. Trails were blazed according to the color coded map. An ok afternoon, could be better could be worse.

This trail was....interesting with two dogs haha. It’s listed as dog-friendly and for most of the hike it totally is! But once you get to the Potomac Heritage Trail portion it gets a little (and by a little I mean a lot lol) confusing. The blue markers totally disappear for the most confusing part (right when it splits off into this incredibly rocky area). I was very doubtful because I thought it was supposed to be a more standard trail, so I was walking in circles retracing my steps trying to find more of those blue markers! But alas, I just trusted my instincts which told me to stay parallel to the river and I eventually saw some more of those beautiful markers. The “rock climbing” aspect of the hike was very unexpected but soooo fun. And luckily my dogs freaking loved it! I thought I’d have to turn around at first because those boulders were tough to manage with the two of them, but we all did it and I’m so glad we did :) by far one of the most interesting and fun hikes I’ve been on. Just be prepared for the rocky section and the occasional lack of trail markers. Trust yourself that you’re going the right way (as long as you’re following the river) and have fun!!

Edit: oh also! There’s a part where you’re walking directly parallel to this major highway directly in the hot sun. Just be prepared for this if you have dogs!! We had to take a ton of water breaks on this stretch and I had to make sure I was holding their leashes extra tight and watching them like hawks.

I loved the little creeks with carefully placed stones to hop across. Also, the paths are spacious. Although I was disappointed by the situation I found at the waterfall. “No swimming, wading, or bathing” is clearly marked in at least two locations; one at the base of the waterfall and another on the trail as you approach the waterfall. They are big and describe the consequences in smaller detail including possible arrest and a $250 fine! The scene was beautiful despite the insistence of a white trash summer (clothes and trash thrown everywhere along with half-naked teens and small children romping through it). I was mildly disgusted as I ventured out for a pleasant hike with hopes of seeing the waterfall here in all of its glory. What I found was a gorgeous backdrop to a bunch of unruly visitors unwilling to keep their clothes on. These are not beaches and should not be treated the same way. Come for the view not the more obvious guilty pleasure of a few that seem to come and go without regard to anyone else.

Nice oasis in the city with actual trails to run. Wasn’t too busy for a weekday evening.

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