National Park Access Free

2014 National Park "Free Entry" Dates!! January 20th Martin Luther King Jr. Day; February 15-17th Presidents Day weekend; April 19-20th opening weekend of National Park Week; August 25th National Park Service Birthday; September 27th National Public Lands Day; November 11th Veterans Day

Sunday, January 5, 2014

#2 Prince William Forest Park

I am becoming very fond of Prince William Forest Park. It is a small park as National Park Service parks go, but the trails offer solitude, and in most cases, creek-side scenery where you're almost certain to see some form of wildlife. Today, as the weather forecast continued to decline, it was a herd of deer that rustled the silence of the day.

I chose a new path today, starting along the Laurel Trail Loop, crossing Quantico creek (south fork), then onto the North Orenda Road trail. The path was icy and slick, and I was best served to stay off to the sides of the trail for better footing.

Laurel Loop Trail

As I walked along this new trail, I was surprised to find one of the small, private cemetery's in the Park. I have heard of their existence, but to this date had yet to research their locations. This cemetery I came upon appeared to consist of 4 graves. I was only able to make out the inscription on one, and I believe it was the most recent: Katherine Johns, Born Nov 22nd 1891, Died Apr 13th 1931. I have yet to find information on Katherine John's, but was able to research there are over 45 family cemeteries existing within the park, and at least 300 individual burials have been identified.

Private Cemetery

My takeaway from today: Go to the park during inclement weather. You, the deer, and the dearly departed have it to yourself. I hope to learn more of the families and individuals buried here.

See you on the trails!



  1. Sounds like a good project, to research and find as many of these cemeteries as possible. I enjoyed doing that in Germany. Of course, you don't want to get distracted from your primary goal.... :)

  2. @celticscribblings Yes, I will definitely take the time to do more research. It suddenly becomes more interesting to know a little about the people laid to rest there. You're absolutely correct though; the first goal is to cover miles and not get distracted by....Look! Melanerpes erythrocephalus! :-)