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Saturday, June 28, 2014

#25 - North Valley Trail to Quantico Falls

Blackberries along the North Valley Trail

Yesterday was a special hike for a number of reasons. It was Friday, and I was able to get an evening hike in, which I always enjoy. It was hike number twenty-five, which gets me halfway to this year's goal. I hiked Prince William Forest Park, which is my local favorite. But most of all, my daughter Sarah joined me, and it was wonderful to share the time as we covered a beautiful five miles.

North Valley Trail provides for a great hike along the South Fork of Quantico Creek, joining with the North Fork a mile or so downstream. It's beautifully wooded, there is normally some wildlife to see, and during various times of the year different flora is in bloom. Today, blackberries were just ripening, bringing back memories of picking blackberries as a kid to have with vanilla ice cream or simply in a bowl with condensed milk.

North Valley Trail

North Valley Trail
North Valley Trail
There is a lot to see along the trail, with the waters edge nearby, the landscape from rock to woods, and remnants of an abandoned pyrite mine that existed here from 1889-1920. After we joined up with the North Fork, a summer rain passed through. We were nearly fully protected from the rain by the forest of trees. We stopped, waited out the passing shower and listened as a heavy rain pelted the canopy of leaves. Life in the forest.

We made it to the Falls. With the rocks wet, we decided against venturing out on them too much and took in our view from the top. 

Top of Quantico Falls

Riley at Quantico Falls
Quantico Falls was our destination and our turnaround point, but today's hike was more about the journey. A father, daughter, a summer rain... and of course, the family dog.

Sarah came home from New York City four weeks ago and leaves for Seattle four weeks from now. I'm happy for her and proud for her. She said she'll be hiking in the Seattle area and other parts of Washington State. I can't imagine the beauty she'll see. I hope I'll get a chance to go hike with her.

Thanks for making this a great hike, Sarah!
See you on the trails!


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