February 9, 2013 · 9:00 AM
In July 1861, the Union and Confederate armies met at Manassas for the first major battle of the Civil War. In August 1862, they met again on the same battlefield in one the bloodiest battles of the war. The second Southern win set the stage for the Maryland invasion by the South, leading to Antietam. Our hike, in two loops, will cover much of the battlefield, with key sites of both battles. We’ll learn the strategy and events for both battles, while walking at a moderate pace.
The first loop, an easy 5.5 miles (1.1 blister) follows the action of First Manassas and parts of the second battle. The second loop, another 6 miles, covers the much broader area of the second battle. You may do the first or both loops (moderate or 2.3 blisters). Bring water and a bag lunch if you plan to do both loops. The route is mostly over rolling hills and natural surfaces, with some paved areas, and is mostly exposed.
To carpool, meet at 9 am in Vienna Metro’s north Park & Ride lot (not the south side and not the Kiss & Ride); otherwise, meet in the Henry Hill Visitor Center's parking lot (6511 Sudley Rd, Manassas, VA) by 9:30. (Let me know if you plan to meet there.)