This past weekend was an absolutely beautiful weekend in January. I decided to drive out to Harpers Ferry, WV to take the dogs for a walk along the river. It was a beautiful day on Saturday, but it was still pretty cold…it is January, you know? I thought the cold weather might keep people at home and felt good about a walk by the river.
Little did I know that there were a lot of other tough souls who didn’t mind a little cold on an otherwise nice January day. As I drove into Harpers Ferry, there was a line of traffic and the first parking lot was full. I continued on hoping the second parking lot would be better since I didn’t see that many people walking around. Unfortunately the lot was full as well in town and my brilliant idea was not feeling so brilliant anymore.
I pulled out my phone and was trying to decide if I should go to other local hikes like Weverton Cliffs or maybe a shorter hike at Bolivar. I ended up just driving and as I was leaving I hung a left on Shoreline Drive towards the shuttle buses for Harpers Ferry. I was hoping that I could find parking and maybe take a walk from that parking lot.
As I drove along Shoreline, I saw signs for Murphy Farm which looked interesting so I took a detour and found an almost empty parking lot! Victory!
The trail actually starts at the vistor center which would make the hike close to 3 miles long, however, I parked at the Murphy Farm lot so the trail I took was only a mile. Not much of a hike, but I neglected to take any of the side trails which would have added some time.
The trail takes you to an overlook which is the 1895-1909 site of the John Brown Fort and the Niagara Movement’s 1906 pilgrimage. Just west of the overlook is a mulched, wooded trail which takes you to another view of the river and the Civil War earthworks.
My dogs enjoyed the trail as you can see by some of the photos. The trails are nice and wide. At the overlook there were a number of rocks and tree stumps as well as a bench to sit on.
If you are looking for a short hike with not too many hills, this isn’t bad. You can always make it a longer 3 mile hike by parking at the visitor center which I may do next time. A short drive from Loudoun on a nice day makes this trail a nice way to stretch the legs.