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Battle of 2nd Manassas Loop Trail

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This 7.2 mile loop hike at Manassas National Battlefield Park occured on Saturday, February 6, 2021. Participants were Jessica Lowry, Mary Gordon, Tom O'Brien and Mike Calabrese.

We were lucky in that this hike took place between two different snow storms. And the weather that day was partly cloudy and above freezing. What could possibly go wrong?

I arrived at the church at 7:45 AM. Tom arrived five minutes later. Then Mary arrived five minutes after that. So we then caravaned over to Manassas NBP. Jessica was there waiting for us. No one else showed up so it was "The Regular Crew" for this hike.

We started off hiking along the northern end of the park. The trail was icy in some sports, muddy in some spots, snowy in some spots and just right in some spots. We entered the unfinished railroad area after about a mile and the Groveton Monument/Deep Cut area after about 1.5 miles. I gave the group a choice: Either 1 mile to Chinn Ridge or 2 miles to Chinn Ridge. The majority chose 2 miles. So we proceeded along the western end of the park. We made it to the Brawner house. Then we tried to use the nearby restrooms. They were locked so we used the woods.

We then crossed US29 Lee Highway, encountered some snow on the trail since it was heavilly wooded, then proceeded along the southern edge of the park. We passed the Lewis House site, crossed Groveton RD and then proceeded along a fire road that ran parallel to I66. We then were hiking along the eastern end of the park. This stretch turned out to be about 3 miles instead of 2. When we got to the first trail intersection I asked if the group wanted to do 2 more miles or 1. They voted for 1. So we set off again for Chinn Ridge.

Tom and Jessica were doing fine on this hike. But I had aggravated an old back muscle issue from my junior high football days. So I was hurting. And Mary was having some pain issues as well. So we soldiered on across Chinn Ridge and then made it to Sudley RD VA234.

I was in a lot of pain at this point. I kept going, but slowly. We crossed Sudley RD VA234, then Lee HWY US29, then passed the stone House. This was the home stretch back to our vehicles. But we had a huge up right behind the stone house. Had there still been snow on the ground we would have seen kids here sledding the hill.

So we trudged up the hill. I was huring badly at this point. Once on top of the hill we did some small ups and downs and were then back at our vehicles just before noon. This last stretch was probably 2 miles instead of 1. We ended up doing 7.2 miles according to Jessica's Fit Bit. It would have been 6 miles if we cut through Deep Cut. And I erred in thinking that we could get this loop down to 5 miles. We probably could have done so if we backtracked to the vehicles at Deep Cut. But we did the whole loop and we lived to tell about it.

It's funny how, when one is doing a hike, one deals with occassional pain, the ups, the length, etc. It tends to be not fun at times. But afterwards, one can look back and say that they had "been there, done that!" That was the case here. It was a tough hike and longer than we had anticipated. But it was a very historic and beautiful open space. And we can now say that we conquered the Battle of Second Manassas Loop trail.

Mike C


Between Sudley RD & Featherbed LA
   Between Sudley RD & Featherbed LA.
   By Mike Calabrese
Group pic @ mile 1
  Group pic @ mile 1
   By Mike Calabrese
Groveton Monument
Groveton Monument.
By Jessica Lowry

Side trail @ Deep Cut
  Side trail @ Deep Cut
   By Mike Calabrese
Brawner House
  Brawner House
   By Jessica Lowry
Lat big up
  Last big up
   By Mike Calabrese
GPS Track
GPS Track.
By Jessica Lowry



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