Let’s enjoy the beautiful fall colors in Rock Creek Park!
The route: Departing from Cleveland Park Metro Station, on the east side of Connecticut Ave NW, we’ll walk north two blocks and turn right onto Melvin C. Hazen Trail and follow it east to Rock Creek. From there we’ll walk north through beautiful Rock Creek Park, along Western Ridge Trail, Beach Drive, and Valley Trail to the park police station, where we’ll turn around and retrace our route. In addition to the beautiful fall colors, we’ll pass a couple of historic sights along our way:
• Boulder Bridge (http://tinyurl.com/kyua6o9), one of the earliest extant bridges in Rock Creek Park. Constructed in 1902, the bridge is a Melan reinforced concrete arch bridge with a unique boulder facing that blends into the bridge's surroundings.
• Peirce Mill (http://tinyurl.com/k9og7k4), built in the 1820s, was grinding wheat for local farmers until the 1890s, when the US Government purchased it as part of Rock Creek Park. Hard times have always been good news for the mill: it was renovated twice under public works projects auspices, once as part of the Public Works Administration in 1936 and more recently as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2011.
The walk is 5.2 miles of smiles and should take about 2 hours. The path is fairly level except for the descent into and out of Rock Creek streambed. The surface is a mix of dirt and paved and pretty easy going throughout.
Google map: http://tinyurl.com/jfehhpw
How to get there:
• Metro: Cleveland Park Metro Station is on the Red Line.
• Driving: The street address is 3599 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C., and there is parallel parking available on surrounding streets:
- From the north, along the I-495 Beltway, take the MD-185S / Connecticut Ave exit and drive south 5.1 miles on Connecticut Ave. The meetup location will be on your left.
- From south of the Potomac, cross Arlington Memorial Bridge, turning right onto the ramp for Rock Creek Parkway/Kennedy Center. Merge onto Ohio St and turn left onto Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway NW, staying to your left onto Rock Creek Parkway/Shoreham Dr and continuing onto 24th St NW. Turn left onto Connecticut St NW and the meetup location at Cleveland Park Metro Station will be on your right, just past the zoo.
Weather: The forecast is sunny and a high of 67F. Updates here: http://tinyurl.com/jftq
What to bring: Water, comfy shoes, and your furry friend if desired (leashes, please). Sunglasses and the layered look are fashionable, and a camera might be a handy accessory.
Advisory: As a reminder, this is an adult group, and you are ultimately responsible for your own safety and well-being during events. No one under 18 years of age is allowed at this event, either as members or as guests, to include babies in carriers and/or strollers.
Administrative stuff: There are restrooms and drinking fountains at Peirce Mill, and at the commercial establishments around the meetup location.
• Smoky Mountains Fall Foliage Prediction Map: http://tinyurl.com/mfzx75n
• Firehouse Bakery and Coffeehouse, 3411 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008,[masked], http://tinyurl.com/j4zf77l
• Fat Pete's BBQ, 3407 Connecticut Ave NW,[masked], http://tinyurl.com/px85x2p