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

This is one of my favorite trails because of all the little mini side trails throughout the loop. Dog friendly, family friendly, and once you get near the water it provides some fantastic views. Every time i go I just sort of pick and choose the trails as I pass them and it makes it seem like you've gone on a new hike each time. The only thing bad I can say about this hike is the area by the waterfall is very dirty and constantly has trash and broken glass. Also a bit smelly.

Great little park to explore. 10 dollar entrance fee but you do get it for 3 days. The waterfalls are amazing. It’s a must see.

hiking
9 days ago

Beautiful views but many downed trees. We couldn't make the full loop because we lost the trail at the waterfalls. It was impassable.

This was such a pretty hike! it's not at all difficult. great place to take people.

Nice and easy local hike. The views of the waterfalls are pretty awesome.

Great trail. Some rocky areas, very easy hike.

It’s a nice trail but dear lord does it smell like sewage.

Quick morning hike with great views. Easy for everyone. One or two spots are tricky due to down trees, and eroded trail.

Great trip with the dog a little hairy in some spots so be careful.

Several areas were blocked (I’m assuming because of recent storms) but this trail was fun for my girls! Not a trail for younger kids or strollers....some areas are quite close to rock cliffs. The trails were a little difficult to navigate in some areas but blue paint on the trees helped us to stay on track. The app was also a great guide tool.

I went on this trail as a brand-new-to-Great-Falls person and was expecting a walking trail. The River Trail is DEFINITELY a hiking trail that requires frequent use of your hands for navigating hills and over rocks, and includes very steep inclines that will leave inexperienced hikers (like myself) out of breath and physically strained. You will spend most of your time looking at the ground to watch your footing and very little time enjoying the beautiful scenery around you. Early March 2018, there were downed trees on the trail that were difficult to pass without being extremely nimble. A wet patch of mud on a slope caused me to tumble; I cut my palm on a rock trying to break my fall. I do not recommend this trail after any amount of rain. I cut this trail short and took a shortcut over to the Old Carriage Trail, which can be classified as a walking trail... very smooth and only slight inclines.

This park was listed as an Audubon Hotspot for birding year-round but we hardly saw any birds at all (early March). We saw the most birds near the parking lot (and just common birds). Disappointing.

Offers relative serenity and beauty a stones throw from DC. It doesn’t quite live up to nearby Great Falls, but is a worthy alternative.

sweet place to hike..

This was a much better hike than I expected it to be. I’ve been to Great Falls Park a number of times to look at the falls but wasn’t aware that there was a loop with some elevation and rocky parts and more challenge than I expected. It was also beautiful - a warm winter mid-week day with few people and great views through the bare trees. I highly recommend it for a good hike close to downtown DC.

Nice easy trail. But quite busy.

amazing as good as it gets beautiful waterfalls

Love the views & walking along the frozen Potomac!

Lots of unmarked trail intersections. Very easy hike.

hiking
5 months ago

poorly marked in some areas, but was always able to find the trail. great hike on the first snow of the season!

Great place for dogs!

took our dogs. it was beautiful! kinda stinky but a fun trail.

Great walk along the river, old carriage road great for running as well

I've done every trail on the VA and MD side. MD is usually less crowded. I would say every trail is dog friendly but if you have a small dog there are some places you will need to carry them. I love Great Falls because how how versatile the trails are regardless if you want hard or easy, water or forest.

I hiked this a couple times. We hiked along the river and it’s a pretty easy hike. If you’re trying to cross the river in some parts the rocks are very slippery and not sturdy. I definitely fell down one time trying to be too adventurous. Beautiful! We saw people in the canoeing in the water. Water stream is very intense!

very easy hike

6 months ago

Trail is poorly marked - which makes it a bit fun. Nothing else really challenging. Waterfall was almost non-existent but may be nice after some good rains. Views of Potomac are nice.

Too hard and dangerous for dogs to complete the loop. I had to turn around. Other than that very challenging.

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