Tag Archives: Potomac River

Arlington House & Arlington National Cemetery, VA

– Civil War Series – Northern Virginia’s Arlington National Cemetery occupies a prized piece of real estate, just across the Potomac River from Washington, DC. At 624 acres, the sloping hillsides contain the graves of thousands of American military veterans, … Continue reading

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Bay View Trail (Mason Neck State Park, VA)

Like most marshy environments, the defining feature of the Mason Neck peninsula is, of course, the water that surrounds it. Despite being well upstream of the ocean, the Potomac River at Mason Neck still ebbs and flows with the Atlantic … Continue reading

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Billy Goat Trail – Section B (Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, MD)

Most DC residents who know the Billy Goat Trail brag of completing the iconic Section A—a rugged and challenging hike in Maryland’s Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park. While Section A’s Potomac vistas and rocky traverses make it one … Continue reading

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Appalachian Trail to Weverton Cliffs (South Mountain State Park, MD)

Perched at the southern tip of South Mountain, more than 500 feet above the Potomac River, Weverton Cliffs in central Maryland is easily one of the state’s most scintillating viewpoints. It is also relatively easily accessible—less than a mile’s hike … Continue reading

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Loudoun Heights Trail (Harper’s Ferry National Historical Park, WV)

– Civil War Series – In September 1862, Confederate General “Stonewall” Jackson used Loudoun Heights as a staging ground for the bombardment of the picturesque—but also strategic—town of Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia. Today, remnants of the Civil War have mostly … Continue reading

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George Washington’s Mount Vernon (Mount Vernon, VA)

– Revolutionary War Series – George Washington—Revolutionary War hero, the first US president, and…farmer and gardener? Mount Vernon celebrates the life of America’s most well-renowned founding father, with a focus on his dealings at home: in the privacy of his … Continue reading

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Great Falls Overlooks (Great Falls Park, VA)

It must have come as a surprise to early pioneers in the area northwest of present-day Washington, DC—where the Potomac River is mostly calm, wide, and still—to find a sudden, powerful plunge impassable by boat. Owing to a geomorphologic break … Continue reading

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Gulf Branch Trail (Arlington, VA)

Terminating at a multi-tiered waterfall, the Gulf Branch Trail follows one of northern Virginia’s several lush stream valleys from Glebe Road Park in Arlington to the Potomac River. The Gulf Branch Nature Center, situated roughly halfway through the hike, offers … Continue reading

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Potomac Heritage Trail – Turkey Run to Scott’s Run (George Washington Memorial Parkway, VA)

This 4.6-mile ramble from Turkey Run Park to Scott’s Run Nature Preserve in McLean, Virginia constitutes the third section of the Potomac Heritage Trail heading westward from Rosslyn in Arlington. (Note: Descriptions of the two preceding sections—Roosevelt Island to Fort … Continue reading

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Donaldson Run Trail and Loop (Arlington, VA)

Bearing westward from Rosslyn in Arlington, Virginia, Donaldson Run is the third notable tributary feeding into the Potomac River. Like its neighbors—Spout Run, Windy Run, and Pimmit Run—Donaldson Run cuts through rocky bluffs, with the last half-mile punctuated by minor … Continue reading

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