Claude Moore Park, Sterling

4:51P.M. for 46 minutes

Temperature: 86° F

Humidity: 42%

8 July 2017



Well, I got a little lost this time.

Claude Moore's trails have this one frustrating quirk: at certain places they meet in a tangle of different trails. One area contains three different intersections butting up on each other. Worse, the park re-uses some trail colors, so you may start on blue, transition to white, then transition to a different blue trail.

This danger bit me hard partway into my walk. I'd entered from the sports field side, which is quite some distance from my usual entrance near the welcome cabin.

I quickly found a trail that skirted a large, quiet pond, then struck out through the woods.

One thing I love about Claude Moore is its variety of environments. One minute you're among dense Virginia oaks and poplars, and the next surrounded by pine and spruce trees right out of Germany. Some areas are flat as a prairie; others are criss-crossed with wooden bridges over trickling streams.

But soon as I was criss-crossing rather more than I wanted. I'd been out for over 30 minutes and turned around to go back, but after a few minutes I realized I was on an unfamiliar trail. Backtracking further didn't help.

Finally I pulled out my phone and fired up a map app. A few moments of walking told me I was headed in the exact opposite direction that I wanted to go, so with some testing at various intersections, I eventually made it back to the parking lot.