View Full Version : Spinoff: Best NoVA trails for first timers?

May. 24, 2010, 04:19 PM
I saw the thread for MD. How about VA? We are trail experienced around our barn (and prior barn had extensive trails) but will start trailering out soon. Cannot do very hilly or rocky - and prefer quiet trails - not ones buzzing with bikers, strollers, etc. for first few times out away from barn. LOVE LOVE wooded trails. Any good ones close to Leesburg? Happy to ride as short as half hour up to 2 hours for now. Thanks :)

May. 24, 2010, 05:31 PM
Manassas Battlefield.

Lots of Woods. Not too hilly.

May. 25, 2010, 03:59 PM
I love Manassas, but for the first time out of Leesburg I think the Blandy Arboritum might be a good place. It's more secluded, you don't have to trailer through Suburbia or worry about limited parking or crossing an extremely busy road (although at Manassas parking behind NOVA is good), and it's a nice easy ride. It's where we go when we're starting to get our guys in shape in the spring or need a light ride coming off an injury. Soft trails. http://www.virginia.edu/blandy/brochures/bridle_trail.pdf

Woodstock over off of Rt. 28 in MD is also really nice and an easy ride, relatively close to Leesburg. http://www.equestrianpark.org/home.htm

If you really want to do a lot of trail riding, join USTR. You can't find nicer trails in the western Loudoun area than BRCES in Neersville, and you have to be a member of USTR to ride there. http://www.ustrailride.org/ (The web site is a little out of date, but they have a Yahoo group that's active and current.)

If you're interested in USTR let me know, and I'll give you more info.

Oh, and as far as wooded trails go, I would say BRCES trails are best, they're almost all wooded.

May. 27, 2010, 08:24 PM
How about Franklin Park in Purcellville?

May. 28, 2010, 01:58 PM
Call Shannon at Morven Park and schedule for her to guide you and your friends around there. They are of course in Leesburg and with 1000 acres offer a variety of terrain,


May. 29, 2010, 11:40 AM
Hi All - this is great info. Any leads on trails in Fauquier County other than Sky Meadow -which is great, but just looking for some options. Thanks!

Jennifer Alcott
May. 29, 2010, 12:23 PM
Phelps Wildlife Management Area is great; however, if your horse is not used to gunfire, I'd park somewhere else other than the parking lot closest to the firing range. :D

It's relatively remote, no major highways close by, but depending on the season, you do have to be aware that hunting is allowed.


Some of the trails do have large gravel that was put down years ago after a really wet winter. There's one bridge that I can recall that is not necessarily "green horse friendly" in that the planks are spaced widely enough that the horse can see in between down to the creek, but maybe that's more of a mental issue for the rider than the horse. :):

Also, Lake Anna State Park a bit further south is good for greenies, too. However, when you're riding close to the lake and a boat goes by, the ensuing wake and little waves hitting the shore can be a bit scary to green horses. Most of the trails are not TOO close to the lake, however.


There is another WMA near Sky Meadows, Thompson WMA:


And then there's the Inn at Kelly's Ford:


Happy Trail Riding!

May. 29, 2010, 03:02 PM
I forgot about Kelly's Ford- those folks are very nice and the place is good too!

Jun. 1, 2010, 12:54 AM
Hi all -thanks for the great leads. I've stopped by Kelly's Ford before and thought it sounded like a nice option, will have to check it out - perfect horse and husband combo - trails for me, pub for him!

Jun. 1, 2010, 11:13 AM
Many of the foxhunts in Loudoun are having summer trailrides on private land that you'd not normally have access to. And there's usually food afterwards. Nice/fun folks! There's one almost every weekend all summer somewhere. Check their websites, newspaper etc.

Isn't there still a 2 mile trail around the dump on Evergreen Mills Rd - route 621? And don't forget the Dominion powerline trail altho' it's busy!

I'd always advocate going with friends on private land & trails rather than public. Less distractions/smaller group and more control over the pace and how it all goes. Make lotsa horsey friends!! Join horse clubs.
Come ride w/me even!

Jun. 1, 2010, 12:13 PM
Isn't there still a 2 mile trail around the dump on Evergreen Mills Rd - route 621?

I believe it's still there. We've never tried it, because there are so many other longer options around. Anyone have any input on how it is these days? I remember someone saying the parking area wasn't great, but I still can't figure out where it is...

Jun. 7, 2010, 05:23 PM
Lower Potomac Field Station

* 10406 Gunston Rd.
Lorton, Virginia 22079

The BLM trails are exactly what you're looking for. Not hilly or rocky. Really quiet and beautiful.

Jun. 13, 2010, 09:36 PM
Lower Potomac Field Station

* 10406 Gunston Rd.
Lorton, Virginia 22079

The BLM trails are exactly what you're looking for. Not hilly or rocky. Really quiet and beautiful.

I have been on these trails many many times and they are the best! Mason neck trails are a lot of fun. Bull Run is always a beautiful experience also but you need a pass for that.