Best Hiking Spots Near Washington D.C.

Washington D.C. is a hotspot for tourists around the world, but it has so much more to offer than just museums and monuments. You might not believe it, but Washington D.C. and the surrounding areas are some of the best places to get out and reconnect with nature. Check out some of my favorite hiking spots within a few hours of Washington D.C.

And for my rookie hikers, I've compiled a list of tips for those starting out at the bottom of this post. Check it out!

1) Old Rag Mountain Trail

2) Cascade Falls Loop Trail

3) Paw Paw C&O Trail

4) Harpers Ferry Maryland Heights Trail

5) King and Queens Chair Loop

6) Great Falls Billy Goat Trail

Tips for Rookie Hikers

We all start somewhere. I'm nowhere near ready to take on a month-long stretch of the Appalachian Mountains, but I can confidently say that over the past two years I have pushed myself to conquer bigger and bigger mountains (both literally and figuratively). Here's some of the things I've learned:

  • Hike as early in the morning as you can. You'll beat the rush of other hikers, gets decent parking, and get to hike before it gets too hot.

  • Always bring more water than you think you'll need. Better to be over-prepared than be over-heated and dehydrated.

  • Prepare for ticks! Whenever possible, wear bug spray, hats, and long pants.

  • Work your way up to bigger challenges. I'm all about pushing yourself but it's important to know your limits and not push too hard. Picking hikes that are too challenging could be dangerous!

  • Pack light snacks. Some of my favorites are dried fruit, jerky sticks, and Luna bars.

  • Always bring a camera or extra charger for your phone so that it's ready for pictures.

  • When going on longer hikes, pack a change of socks/shoes for the ride home.

  • Pack bandaids, in case you get blisters from your shoes.

Until next time...


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