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Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
Webinar on Familiarity Tours and PHNST

FREE September 23, 2017 Familiarity Tour of the Woodlawn District of Fairfax along the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail. 

Familiarity Tour with Supervisor Storck to explore the sites in the Woodlawn historic District of Southern Fairfax County.  Join local historians and trail planners in a one-mile walk that includes interpretation at Woodlawn Estate, Arcadia Farm, and Pope-Leighey House and a FREE tour of George Washington's Distillery and Gristmill.  Free tours of the Woodlawn and Pope-Leighey houses and George Washington's Mount Vernon are available for registrants as well. Find more information here.

Free parking available at Woodlawn.  The tour will begin from the parking lot at 10:00 AM on Sept. 23, 2017.  

NVRC and Visit Loudoun Familiarity Tour: Recreational Assets Familiarization and Panel at Lansdowne Resort
Friday, September 22, 2017, 10 am -12:15 pm

The Resort  is providing a golf-cart familiarization tour of the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail for the Board of Supervisors and staff, followed by a panel discussion of the federal, state, regional, and local recreational assets found in Loudoun County. Visit Loudoun will moderate the panel, which includes representatives from:

  • Loudoun County Parks, Recreation and Community Services
  • NOVA Parks
  • Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation
  • Potomac Heritage Trail

As evident in public comments captured during Envision Loudoun, access to and the connectivity of trails and parks continues to be a key opportunity for maintaining and building on the high quality of life found in Loudoun County. Please dress appropriately for the outdoors. In the event of rain, the entire session will take place in the Faulkner Room at Lansdowne Resort. Open to the public.

Webinar held on Familiarity Tours in Northern Virginia           

August 14, 2017, 10:00 - 11:00 AM  

With promotion of Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail projects as examples, this discussion offered an opportunity to learn about recent and planned familiarity tours and the opportunities to promote experiences in the Potomac River corridor and to make connections among them.  Brendon Hanafin and Ryan Delaney from Prince William County will share thoughts on a recent tour, and NVRC staff will solicit ideas for additional tours. Please consider sharing your initiatives and events related to outdoor recreation and the PHT corridor


Prince William County Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail Familiarity Boat Tour
NVRC hosted trails advocates, staff, and media on a tour of Prince William County's portion of the  Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail from the water on the Miss Rivershore on July 13, 2017.  Twenty-nine participants viewed the significant sights in the Potomac corridor and their historic, recreational and visual connections, identifying priorities and opportunities for completing and promoting the trail in Prince William County. 

January 2017 webinar held to develop and realize benefits through connections with long distance trails within DC and Northern Virginia
NVRC held a webinar on long range trails in Northern Virginia for planners, land managers, transportation partners, parks and recreation, tourism staff, and other stakeholders.

Participants heard from the National Capital Trails Coalition, National Park Service, East Coast Greenways, W&OD Trails Manager, and Department of Conservation and Recreation staff on the following:

  1. Long Distance Trails within DC and Northern Virginia
  2. National Trails System and its benefits
  3. How long range trails benefit local routes, the region, and resources they can add to trail promotion and gap closures
  4. How to integrate long range trails into local networks and planning efforts
  5. How trails can support recreation beyond parks, with connection to natural areas, historic resources, and stories that they tell

Questions: Contact Debbie Spiliotopoulos or Corey Miles.

Interactive Map for Webinar: https://nvrc.maps.arcgis.com/apps/View/index.html?appid=d1757e45167d4f9cba41fcc88193e4f7

Corridor Map2.jpg

Corridor Analysis For the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail in Northern Virginia
The Corridor Analysis offers a regional summary of current and planned amenities, gaps, and plans for the Trail network, identifying proposed projects to enhance our communities and the Trail experience in Northern Virginia:

About the Trail
Photo of Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
  • The Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail (PHT) is an evolving, 830-mile network of locally-managed trails and routes on both sides of the Potomac between the mouth of the River and the Allegheny Highlands in the upper Ohio River basin
  • Blending outdoor recreational opportunities with rich ecological, historical and cultural environments, the Trail network is intended for non-motorized modes of travel including, variously, foot, bicycle, boat, horse and cross-country skis
  • The Trail network in Northern Virginia includes various hiking, hiking/equestrian and hiking/equestrian/bicycling facilities, including the 10-mile Potomac Heritage Trail and 18-mile Mount Vernon Trail in George Washington Memorial Parkway, various trail segments in northern Fairfax and eastern Loudoun counties, and planned and existing segments in southern Fairfax and Prince William counties
  • Based on concept plans completed approximately 10 years ago, member jurisdictions have recognized the Trail in local comprehensive plans and the Commonwealth has recognized the trail in the Virginia Outdoors Plan
  • NVRC coordinates regular meetings among staff of member jurisdictions and other stakeholders provide means for coordination through the PHT Land Managers quarterly meetings.
  • More specifically, local PHT advocates in Northern Virginia are bringing into focus a continuous footpath between Locust Shade Park in southern Prince William County and White's Ferry near Leesburg, Virginia, in Loudoun County, a distance of about one hundred miles
  • Upon completion users will be able to cross the Potomac at White’s Ferry and either continue north on the C&O Canal Towpath or continue south toward Georgetown to complete a loop using either Chain Bridge or the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Bridge or the Arlington Memorial Bridge

NVRC's Role
  • NVRC supports the PHT through an agreement with the National Park Service, ongoing collaboration with the PHT Land Managers group, a collection of state, federal and local land managers and planners involved in the Heritage Trail in Northern Virginia
  • NVRC also sponsors enhancement grant funding for trail construction activities in several jurisdictions
  • Land managers meet quarterly, the second Wednesday in January, April, July, and October

Past Potomac Heritage Trails Workshops
NVRC and the National Park Service hosted a Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail roundtable and heritage tourism workshop Wednesday and Thursday, October 17 and 18, 2012 in Historic Occoquan Viriginia. 

October 17 focused on the Trail Network, wayfinding and graphic identity, successes and challenges. October 17 includes a tour of local sites and connections by land and by water on the "MIss Rivershore".  October 18 focused on Heritage Tourism and gateway communities from local and international perspectives as well as discussion and presentations on interpretations of natural and historic amenities and gateway communities.

For a meeting summary click here.

On May 4, 2011, NVRC, with support from Supervisor Frank Principi’s Office and the National Park Service, organized a workshop at Belmont Bay, the site of a Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail segment near the mouth of the scenic Occoquan River

More Information

Northern Virginia Regional Commission  3040 Williams Drive, Suite 200  Fairfax, VA 22031  703-642-0700 (Voice)  703-642-5077 (FAX)  Email Us