*** Tropical Storm Sandy Update
The forecast for Sunday is 59 degrees and 80% chance of rain, but Saturday's forecast is much more favorable: 66 degrees and a 20% chance of rain after 2:00 pm.
Rather than postponing or canceling altogether, let's try to get this hike in on Saturday, before Tropical Storm Sandy arrives!
Sorry for the short notice! All the same meetup time and place details apply.
Let’s climb a mountain, enjoy the autumn leaves and visit a Civil War battlefield!
The route: From the trailhead kiosk, we will cross the old Manassas Gap Railroad (now Norfolk Southern) and walk west towards Thoroughfare Gap before turning north and uphill along Quarry Trail, passing Chapman Cemetery (2) and Quarry Trench (5). At the top of Quarry Trail (8) we will turn west, passing the top of Fern Hollow Trail (9) on our way up Crescent Ridge Trail, which turns north along the spine of the Bull Run Mountains to the overlook on Mother Leathercoat Mountain, just north of (14). From there we’ll retrace our steps back to the trailhead, except we will descend along Fern Hollow Trail rather than Quarry Trail in order to pass Chapman’s Mill, Mansion, and Icehouse (4) along our way. (NB: Numbers refer to trail signposts; see link to the BRMC Trail Map below.)
It is about 2.5 miles from the trailhead to the overlook and back, for a total of about 5 miles. The trail is dirt, rocky in many places, but generally clear of brush. Given breaks and the 800+ foot elevation gain, the hike should take at least 2 hours.
H/T to Rick for the great suggestion!
Where to meet: We will meet at 10:00 am at the Vienna Metro Station North Parking Lot, Centreboro Dr & Virginia Center Blvd, Oakton, Fairfax, VA. (GPS =[masked],[masked]). From there we will carpool as necessary and proceed to the trailhead.
How to get to the trailhead: From the Vienna Metro Station North Parking Lot, turn right and follow Virginia Center Blvd to Nutley Street. Turn right onto Nutley Street, take the first right onto I-66 West, and drive west for almost 22 miles. Take exit 40 for US-15 towards Haymarket and turn left onto US-15 S/James Madison Highway. After crossing over I-66, take the first right onto VA-55/John Marshall Highway. Drive 2.7 miles and turn right onto Turner Road (3rd intersection). Take the first left onto Beverly Mill Drive, and the trailhead kiosk will be on your left at 17405 Beverly Mill Drive, Broad Run, VA 20137 (GPS =[masked],[masked]).
What to bring: Water, comfy shoes, and your furry friend if desired. Dogs must be leashed. Please remember this is a kid-free zone, no one under 18 please. Sunscreen is recommended; cameras are a good idea.
There are no drinking fountains or restrooms at the trailhead! Fortunately there is a Sheetz in Haymarket at the corner of US-15 and VA-55, 15315 Washington Street, Haymarket, VA. Recommend you stop along the way to pick up a cold drink and drop off any donations (ahem). A block to the south along VA-55 there is a McDonald's on the right, and a bit farther on the right is Cupcake Heaven, at 5125 Washington St Suite 100, which also has hot and cold drinks and a restroom (and cupcakes, of course). BRMC asks that you fill out a waiver form and drop it off at the trailhead. There are no blank forms at the trailhead, so print and fill one out before departing; see the link below. (There is a PDF copy posted above at the "More"/"Files" tab.) Notes:
Bull Run Mountains Conservancy (BRMC): http://www.brmconservancy.org/
BRMC Trail Map: http://tinyurl.com/9sztprd , Waiver Form: http://tinyurl.com/9xz8ncf
Hiking Upward trail notes: http://www.hikingupward.com/ovh/bullrunconservancy/
VA Fall Foliage websites: http://www.dof.virginia.gov/fall/index.htm , http://www.virginia.org/Fall/
Thoroughfare Gap Battlefield website: http://www.civilwar.org/battlefields/thoroughfaregap.html