60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Richmond
by Nathan Lott (Menasha Ridge Press)
© Nathan Lott/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.
Hidden gem. Well marked trails, beautiful huge poplars and beech, varied terrain, and few people.
Caledon has a good variety of trails to choose from. Besides the 'published' trails, it is very easy to combine paths to make longer hikes possible. The "Boyd's Hole" and "Flats" trails make a nice ~3.5 mile loop that goes to the bank of the Potomac River. Because this is a Bald Eagle nesting area, those trails are only available from October 1 thru March 31. The other trails include 5 short trails that are chained so that the hiker can choose a distance/difficulty that suits them. The complete loop is ~4 miles, and includes some fairly steep ravines. The newest trail is "Belmont", a ~3.5 mile loop that includes some of the relatively flat gravel-surfaced "Boyd's Hole" trail, then separates to avoid the protected area and loop around the other trails.
Belmont is my favorite of all of the options at Caledon -- it's strenuous enough to give me a good workout but not exhausting.
Caledon's trails are never crowded. On the weekends I may see a couple of other hikers, but most of the time I have the trail all to myself. I've seen many deer during my walks -- mostly on the days that I am able to get there in the morning.
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