Virginia

Hike Cool Spring Path

2 Miles Total - 70 ft gain - Loop Trail

Originally added by Jenn Gonzalez

An old golf course converted into a conservation area is a wonderful place to spend an afternoon.

The Cool Spring Path South is an old golf course that has been and still is in the process of being returned to its natural state by Shenandoah University. The paved paths from the golf course make this an easy hike for anyone. For those who may be in a wheelchair, this loop should be fully accessible.

Once you turn onto F709 (Parker Lane) from Route 7, you will drive all the way to the end. You'll come to the parking lot where there are numerous spots. Once you get out of your car walk to the board explaining the trail. There you will find a couple of guides. One is a laminated map highlighting different things to see on the trail. The other is a paper guide detailing the historical battles that happened on the land during the Civil War. Both of these will enhance your enjoyment of the hike.

Start to the right with the pond on your left. Eventually, you'll reach a place where there is a stone wall on the right. Although the trail continues on, for this hike, you'll see a place to turn and return to the car. At this turn around time, if you look or walk up towards the right you'll see some fantastic rock formations (and possibly the waterfall).

As you turn and head back be sure to look for the Great Blue Heron Rookery across the river. There are numerous nests and herons. You may also spot an eagle flying as there is also an eagle's nest nearby.  At this point, you're close to the river and there are benches at various locations. Any one of these are a great spot for resting and relaxation.  Along the way, they have provided signs that detail the different battles that took place here during the civil war. 

Eventually, you'll return to the pond and the parking lot. Please take note of locations where accessing the river is forbidden without written permission (close to the parking lot). 

As always, pack out what you carry in and if you take your dog, please clean up after them. 

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Tags

Photography
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Handicap Accessible
Picnic Area
River
Scenic

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Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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