Let's explore historic Georgetown! With luck the snow will melt by Saturday, but let's stay on the sidewalk rather than slop around on a muddy trail.
The route: From the Dawson Community Center parking lot, we’ll walk south on N Taft St, turn left on 21st St and follow it around as it turns into N Scott St and turn left onto the Custis Trail headed east. We’ll follow the Custis Trail to N Fort Meyer Drive, where we’ll turn left and cross Key Bridge into Georgetown. From there we’ll take a clockwise tour of some of the historic landmarks of Georgetown: up Exorcist Steps and northwest to Healy Hall, northeast to the Volt Laboratory, east to Christ Episcopal Church, and south to the Old Stone House and the Georgetown Visitor Center, where we’ll take a short break. From there we’ll walk west along the C&O Canal and M Street to Francis Scott Key Park, recross the Potomac along Key Bridge and return to our starting point at Dawson Community
This is a loop hike, 5 miles of smiles, and is easy to moderate difficulty. The surface is paved throughout, with hills and, of course, the 97 Exorcist Steps. (You did see that, right?)
Plan for around two hours, assuming we spend no longer than about 20 minutes on breaks along the way. We're starting a little later than normal because the Old Stone House, at our halfway point, does not open until noon.
Google map of the route: http://tinyurl.com/mgfa3dt
Print map (pdf) with notes: http://tinyurl.com/lhmvcy4
How to get there: From I-495 (either direction), take exit 49 A-B for I-66 toward Washington/Front Royal. Follow signs for Washington, merge onto I-66 E, and drive about 7.5 miles. Take exit 72 for US-29 N and turn right onto US-29 N. After 0.7 miles, turn left on N Veitch St and follow it as it bends to the right and becomes 21st St N. Turn left onto N Taft St. The park and parking lot is on the right just before N Taft St comes to a dead end. Park in the parking lot, or parallel park on adjacent streets.
What to bring: Bring water, comfy shoes, and your furry friend if desired (leashes, please). As a reminder, this is a kids-free zone, no one under 18 years of age is permitted.
Administrative stuff: There are restrooms and drinking fountains at Dawson Terrace Community Center and the Georgetown Visitor Center, and there is a public restroom at Arlington Gateway Park along our route.