Explore Northern VA - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Pretty short hike and straight forward. People are complaining about there being lots of people, I woke up at 430 and hiked up didn't see a single person had the sunrise to myself. You gotta go when no one else wants to, that the trick!

We do this trail at least once a month.

Did this in early June. Nice moderate trail off the C&O towpath. There was a scramble or two but nothing too crazy. Able to take my mini Aussie on this with no issues

beautiful trail. everything about it was perfect.

Completed this trail along with the named loop. Hiked a total of 3.5 miles.

Logged 3.5 miles from the Upper to the Lower Parking areas. Very nice views along this loop. The Appalachian Trail was very icy in spots.

hiking
12 days ago

Logged 5.5 miles on this hike which included hiking to the top of Dark Hollow Falls and exploring around the Rose River Falls. Nice little loop!

11-18, Took us 2hr 40 mins to complete. Spectacular views along the Potomac. I think I’ve have given it a 5-star rating if it was an out and back but I didn’t love the 2nd half (away from the water). Overall a really nice hike. Not too much elevation gain.

Not too long, not too short. Has equal amount ease and steepness to challenge you!

Nice hike with a moderate inclines.

hiking
16 days ago

We went to this trail last Sunday. Not overly strenuous or crowded on a warm autumn day. Muddy in sections which is to be expected after it rained the day before. It’s a nice walk in the woods with minimal elevation. It’s been overlooked by us for the more popular park trails in the past. Well marked past the visitor center from the parking lot (on the left hand side). If you have a national parks pass entrance to the pay lot is free! Took us about 1.5 hours

Convenient hike to get out of the city and into nature. A pretty popular trail but you can avoid the crowds by going early in the morning or late near twilight. Overall pretty easy hike open to all levels.

Amazing views, worth the challenging uphill hike! Extremely windy at the top, careful with the wind gusts when close to the edge!

hiking
19 days ago

Super easy hike, amazing views but super crowded at the top (even in 22 degree weather!). We had our two dogs with us and we passed lots of other dogs on the way, so make sure your furry friends are well behaved!

hiking
20 days ago

Hiked on Thanksgiving. Following the cascading Rose River might be one of my favorite hikes ever!

good hike and sweet views of waterfalls, but not great distant scenic type views..also very busy. but you can swim in the waterfalls and jump off a few rocks into the water. I recommend it once but I wouldn't come back without doing the cedar run loop too

Excellent, a little icy on this Thanksgiving Day, poles will help.

Very muddy but a good trail for kids.

One of my favorite walks to do in the area. It’s a pretty trail and nice not having to pay the entrance fee at great falls.

hiking
26 days ago

Did this trail on the way back after completing the River Trail. Flat and peaceful. Nice end to a long day.

So awesome! Can't believe it's only 30 min from DC. I went early as I usually do and there were not many people. I saw a guy out there in the raging waters kayaking and saw plenty of rock climbers but I was mostly alone save for a few early birders as well. The first half of this hike is very rocky, and can be made even rockier if you explore a little off trail to see the beautiful river cliff views. It's mostly flat as well, with no much uphill at all. The second half of the hike is where you get almost all of the elevation, it's more in the tree line and its seriously just straight up and down and turn around and do up and down again. Both parts of the hike were enjoyable and the views are spectacular. I did this hike because the Billy Goat trail is mostly closed save for one part, I'm happy I did it though and I will be back.

A short day hike. The best view was actually at the 3 overlooks.

Must do for anyone who loves Civil War history like myself. Tons of history markers that gives you a feel of how the battle played out. Great park with a really nice vistors center.

hiking
28 days ago

Did this hike last year. It’s a decent hike for the area. Good views and some rock scrambling. Does get crowded and I prefer more quiet hikes.

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!

hiking
1 month ago

Really beautiful trail with wooded areas, waterfalls, and streams. Somewhat protected from the wind so a little less cold than the more exposed summit hikes. This is a great option to mix it up a bit. We were there two days after it rained and there were a few slick spots but it was very manageable overall. It’s closer to 5 miles when you include the fire road (which you need to use if you are doing the full loop), and there’s an interesting old cemetery near the start as well.

Good, moderate trail. Wide pathways with small, loose rocks. Go early in the morning (before 9am) to avoid crowds. The views at the top are nothing short of stunning. Can get windy though, so be careful. Would do this again. Took some smaller, offshoot trails for even more views.

If you only want to spend a few hours (4 hours or so) hiking Old Rag this is the quickest way to the top. You can Google Maps "Berry Hollow parking" and it will take you exactly to the parking area. It's true the lot only has space for about 10-12 cars but I think this method of getting to old Rag is unknown enough that you should be able to find parking. I say this because you will be entering using the fire road in the back and that involves driving to the west side of the mountain. A bit obscure. I went there on Veterans Day at 11:30am and had no trouble parking in the tiny lot and got back to my car at 4:30pm
You don't get to do any of the obstacle courses that makes this one of the best hikes in the country, but instead think of it as a way to get an inexperienced hiker to the top for that wonderful panorama. There are no jumps, hurdles, no need to help anyone getting pulled up, nothing. It's just a moderate uphill walk even a 10 year old could do.

A little steep at times, but totally worth it! The view and the wind take your breath away! Beautiful leisurely hike back downhill to the car. Highest point in the park!

hiking
1 month ago

Excellent trail, steady inclines and awesome water fall and rock outcroppings. Highly recommend!

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