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Laurel Hill Park, Lorton, VA Recon

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On Friday, November 13, 2020 (yes, Friday the 13th) I explored the Laurel Hill Park area near Lorton, VA for a possible upcoming hike for the POPUMC Hiking Group. I found a trail map for this area on so I utilized it for this hike.

I drove to the parking area at the end of Workhouse RD and arrived around 10:30 AM. There was an historic house on the property called Barrett House. The house was fenced off and I could find no evidence that someone named Barrett had lived there.

So I walked to the Cross County Trail, turned right (south) on it and walked under the famous Barrel Bridge, then along Workhouse RD for a short stretch, then turned into the Laurel Hill Park. Most of the land in this area was once part of the former Lorton Reformatory. This prison housed criminals from Washington, DC. When built this was considered 'the country'. But as the area grew calls for the closure of this facility increased. This finally happened in 2001. It had over 11,000 acres. Much of it has been converted to recreational and cultural use.

This trail was built for bicyclists. It had some nice stretches on it but tended to meander. The trails were color coded. I utilized the pink, green, blue and yellow trails. The signing was OK but I wish that this trail was blazed. I was passed by about 6 bikes and about 6 hikers passed me. This was on a Friday so I would guess that weekend traffic would be triple that.

I did make some wrong turns as there were many trail intersections within this park. But thanks to the georeferenced map that I had, I was able to correct my mistakes. There were some ups and I figured I hiked an additional .3 miles that I shouldn't have. But I did 4.5 miles in 2.5 hours. That's 1.8 miles an hour. Not great but not bad.

It was 1:00 PM when I returned to my vehicle and then got home by around 1:30. Even though this is primarilly a bikers trail I think that it would be a good hike for the POPUMC Hiking Group. Since I passed a parking area at around the 3.5 mile point on this hike, I am thinking about meeting there and doing the loop. This would keep us off of the Cross County Trail and shorten the hike from a 4.2 mile lollipop loop to just at or slightly below a 4 mile loop. I'm glad that I finally got to hike this one.

Map of where I hiked

Park Sign
Park Sign.
Barrel Bridge
Barrel Bridge.
Trail sign
Trail sign.
Initial trail
Initial trail.
Old silos
Old silos.
Power plant
Power plant.

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Posted By Mike C on 11-13-2020   |    See All Posts   |   View/Add Comments(0)

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