Trail Description: Located in one of our best natural areas, the Northwest Branch Stream Valley Park hosts both a hard surface trail and natural surface trails. The hard surface trail is located south of the Capital Beltway and links into the Prince George’s County Anacostia Tributary Trail System. The natural surface trails extend north of the Capital Beltway to Wheaton Regional Park. The natural surface trail on the east side of the Northwest Branch stream provides a wilderness-like experience exclusively for hikers; on the west side of the stream, hiking, biking, and horseback riding can be appreciated by all.
Unless noted otherwise on the map, trails marked “Natural Surface” and “Hard Surface” are “Shared by All” trails which includes hikers, bikers, and equestrians.
Trail Location: Burnt Mills Reservoir Silver Spring, MD 20901
Trail Length: 11.7 miles
Trail Surface(s): There are roughly 9 miles of natural surface trail north of the Capital Beltway. The asphalt trail south of the Capital Beltway is 2.7 miles
Parking and Trail Access: See map. Parking for natural surface trail is located at Colesville Road (rt. 29) at the Burnt Mills Dam. Parking for the hard surface trail is located at Adelphi Mill in Prince Georges County. Park your horse trailer at Wheaton Park Stables, 1101 Glenallan Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20902 This is just north of where the trail crosses Kemp Mill Road, and you’ll be able to ride several equestrian trails before ever getting to Northwest Branch. See the map here.
Seasonal Restrictions: See website
Reviews and Tips: Two trails. One the west side of Northwest Branch Creek: The Northwest Branch Trail. This trail is open to horses and hikers. On the east side of the creek: The Rachel Carson Greenway Trail, open to hikers but not horses or bikers. Asphalt trail south of the Capital Beltway is 2.7 miles; natural surface trail north of the Beltway is 10.2 miles.
Amenities: See website