Explore the most popular trail running trails near Potomac with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

love the views and cliffs. much wild life

walking
11 days ago

As of today Trails A and B are closed but the trail to Great Falls overlook is great. It’s flat, smooth, small pebbles; easy for walking or biking. The overlook is incredible.

Challenging and fun!!! Definitely coming back. Beautiful scenery.

Did the A trail with 2 teens. challenging spots for a nice workout. Not too crowed. Going back again for sure!

fun trail, easy enough for kids too.

Did The A & C trails (B was closed). Was around 10.5 miles start to finish. Trail A is the most popular because of the rock scrambling (which is fun!), but I also really enjoyed Trail C because of how close to the water the trail takes you. It’s also much quieter with fewer people.

Great trial and easy to add to others! Dogs ARE allowed here and there are a lot of them! People are stupid in letting them off leash because it’s gonna ruin it for the rest of us good dog people. This is also a fun trail run location.

I have done B & C several times with my dogs. Go early to avoid all the stupid people who think they know how to “hike”. I have had to render first aid on these trails because people hike in flip flops. Both of my dogs love these trails for rock and creek time. A trail is closed to dogs so I have not done that section. Trails are rocky and well traveled.

Perfect hike for the day. A very busy route so close to Washington, DC.

Came and did this trail on a week trip from Utah. Pretty easy for anyone in good health and marked very well.

Got there at 7 this morning, only folks there. Great hike, love the rock scrambling. Couldn’t believe how much added debri there is from the flooding...
Saw a ton of deer, a beaver, turtles, salamanders and other fun stuff along the way.... always a good time.

Decent scrambling but very crowded.

hiking
1 month ago

fantastic hike. well marked. lots of side trail options. the fam and I tromped around for about 5 hours. while there were other hikers on the way, most of the day hikers hike along over to the falls then along the C&O Canal towpath. I've never seen so many old oak trees in one area before. really had a great hike.

Really cool trail from the Maryland side when you do trail C/B And gets you to the other side of the VA overlooks. Great views and can sometimes be crowded if you don’t go early

Beautiful hike. One area where you are on the cliff is barely your foot’s width and is terrifying if you’re going against the flow of traffic for hiking. But overall the views are breathtaking.

It was a nice walk but the trail needs to be groomed up a bit.

Section A can be challenging since it’s mostly scrambling. I recommend starting at the end near the Visitor Center which will lead you to hiking UP the traverse rather than down.

very fun, slightly challenging. rock jumping and climbing and some slippery smooth rocks.

trail running
2 months ago

I've "run" this (part A) several times--the word "run" in quote marks because there are stretches of scrambling over rocks that you can't run. But then it's all good exercise, and great views.

Nice, short trail in the area. Close to river with fun rock scrambles throughout. Lots of wildlife in spring: saw snakes, frogs, turtles, and other awesome animals on trail.

hiking
3 months ago

Loved this hike. It’s pretty flat along the canal side, then more climbing and descents on inland side. I did a double loop to increase the distance. First went clockwise around the loop, then went back counter-clockwise. That’s a good way to go bc then you maximize the climbing in the middle, with good warm up and warm down at start and finish on the flats. Lots of stream crossings. Well marked. Lovely trail. With double loop it’s 4 Miles.

hiking
3 months ago

What this AllTrails description does not note is that section A of Billy Goat Trail is listed as Difficult (sign says one of the most difficult on East Coast), and that there is a 40 foot free climb required to complete the trail. Section B was listed as Moderate, with little rock scrambling and enjoyable.

Wonderful forest walk. Very zen. Beautiful green forest carpet, not a lot of bushes. Terrain is on the easy side but it’s a totally enjoyable walk. Agree with another reviewer that it would be great for trail running. Easy to add additional loops for more distance (such as overlook trail).

hiking
3 months ago

Always a nice hike when I don’t want to drive too far from dc on a weekend. Get there early.

hiking
3 months ago

It’s a great trail but I won’t categorize it as easy. There is a 50 feet cliff on this trail so be prepared for that. A lot of basis level bouldering involved

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike, some spots to free climb on and off the trail!

hiking
3 months ago

Great beginner trail.

See reviews below to locate a trail map. You need a trail map, it is very confusing to attempt to stay on the trail. There are some pretty spaces along the route and a lot of horse manure to avoid. This loop seems to include some other trails. Blockhouse trail has a dead end at some point where there is a cliff, it is an old military site.

hiking
3 months ago

Rocky and challenging but definitely do-able with parents if careful enough!

Billy Goat A trail loop was closed due to flooding, so we walked to the Great Falls Overlook on Olmstead Island, then followed the canal to the bridge across the canal (just past the Billy Goat trail entrance). After crossing over we picked up the Overlook Trail heading back towards the parking lot and eventually ended up canalside. While the views on the Overlook Trail are not as impressive as being right next to the falls, the trails were dry and it wasn’t crowded. It was a nice walk, with a few decent views looking down at the river if you take the two down-and-back spurs off the main trail. Combine all this with sunshine and 70s and you have the ingredients to a perfect hike!

Load More