As always, check the Rock Creek Park Website for any safety advisories before embarking on the hike.
This is a pet-friendly hike. There are some hills, but the hike is not too rough and the trail quality is good. Some sections of the trail are used for horse riding so keep an eye out for horse droppings.
Note the black circles with white numbers on the map. These are picnic areas and make for good points of reference. Also, if you have a smart phone, we recommend you download the Nike running app. You can use it to track your distance.
Begin at Peirce Mill, and pick up the Western Ridge Trail. The trail is directly adjacent to the creek, you can't miss it. Continue 0.4 miles until the trail hits Beach Drive. Cross the street and follow the signs for the Western Ridge Trail. You will enter the woods shortly after crossing the street.
Take the trail through the woods up a steep hill. At the top of the hill, cross the street followed and walk through the small parking lot to continue along the Western Ridge Trail. There will be a picnic area (27 on the map) next to the parking lot. There will be a sign for the Western Ridge Trail (see pic 4 below).
Continue along the trail following the green markers. Eventually (0.8 miles into the hike) you will pass a large field on your right surrounded by a wooden fence. This is the Equitation Field. A little over a mile into the hike you will see a large picnic area to your right. Walk along the picnic area (see pic 6 below). Across the street at the far end of the picnic area you will notice the signs 17 and 18. After sign 17 cross the street (Glover Road) and make a left. You are now off the Western Ridge Trail. At the edge of the forest in front of you, you should see another path. This is the path you want to take (see pic 7 below). It is represented by a gray dotted line on your map.
Continue on this path for about another 0.25 miles and you will come to a street (Ross Drive). Cross the street to stay on the path. There will be a steep descent that will take you to the Creek. Make a right and continue along the creek.
At the 2 and 2.3 mile marks of the hike the trail splits. In both cases stay to your left. Shortly after the second split you will find yourself back at Beach Drive where you first entered the forest. Continue back as you came to Peirce Mill to complete the 3 mile hike.