Volunteer Day at Sleeter Lake Park

Volunteer Day at Sleeter Lake Park

An announcement from Friends of the Blue Ridge Mountains, a fantastic local nonprofit organization that selected Sleeter Lake Park for a special project to further extended the vision of making the park a sanctuary for all of us. Feel free to share this post or their flyer.

  • What: Friends of the Blue Ridge Mountains is sponsoring a tree planting event 
  • Where: Sleeter Lake Park, Lakefield Road (Route 791), Round Hill 
  • When: 10:00 am Saturday, March 23; Rain/inclement weather date: March 30 
  • What: Plant 1½ to 2 inch caliper trees (donated by Meadows Farms Nurseries) into predug holes 
  • Provided: Instructions and tools for planting; refreshments 
  • Informationinfo@friendsofblueridge.org for registration and additional information

Thanks to donations from our members, Friends is sponsoring a collaborative project to enhance Sleeter Lake Park, western Loudoun County’s newest recreational park in Round Hill. Our partners include Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy (LWC), Loudoun County Master Gardeners Association (LCMGA), and the Town of Round Hill. Friends is providing an environmentally friendly master plan for the park based on a design by James Remuzzi of Sustainable Solutions. 

Meadows Farms Nurseries also donated 20 trees for the project. LWC is developing a pollinator meadow with native plants and shrubs. LCMGA has identified existing mature trees along paths through the woods and assisted in the selection of indigenous trees to plant along the paths that connect existing and future park amenities. 

Meadows Farms Nurseries also donated 20 trees for the project. LWC is developing a pollinator meadow with native plants and shrubs. LCMGA has identified existing mature trees along paths through the woods and assisted in the selection of indigenous trees to plant along the paths that connect existing and future park amenities.

The paths will employ earth stabilization and best management practices by incorporating erosion control and water retention/filtration methods on the slopes leading to the lake.

Other improvements planned for Sleeter Lake Park include an outdoor classroom for teaching environmental stewardship, a viewing platform, pollinator gardens and meadow, picnic areas, benches, rest rooms, and fishing pads along the lake.    

Hike: Cool Spring Waterfall

Hike: Cool Spring Waterfall

Distance

3 Miles

Route Type

Out & Back

Difficulty

Easy

Description

This out-and-back hike takes you on a paved path through the old golf course along the Shenandoah River, then off-road on a flat footpath that winds through a grove of paw-paw trees, across a stream over stepping stones, and then a few more steps until you reach a beautiful waterfall.

The land you’re walking through was the site of the Battle of Cool Spring in 1864, much later became a golf course, and recently Shenandoah University reclaimed the property and maintains it as an outdoor classroom for both its community and the general public.

Beyond the waterfall is the River Ridge Trail, which connects into a network of trails, including the Appalachian Trail (just north of Raven Rocks).

Map

Parking

Coming from Round Hill, head west on Route 7. Right before you reach the Shenandoah River, turn right onto Parker Lane. Warning: This turn comes up fast, so be prepared and mind the cars behind you if you stop suddenly.

Follow Parker Lane until you reach the Cool Spring lodge. In front of the lodge is a big parking lot.

Hike: Raven Rocks Hollow Run

Distance

4 Miles

Route Type

Out & Back

Difficulty

Moderate

Description

This out-and-back hike takes you up and away from Rte 7 for about 1.5 miles before a half-mile steep descent to Raven Rocks Hollow Run, the turnaround spot. You’ll find a nice shady place to hang out and enjoy a snack before returning south to your car. If you’re thirsty, there’s a spring about 100 yards down a blue blaze trail where you can collect water (filtration recommended).

Hiking Upward has more great information. Their hike takes you all the way to the Raven Rocks cliff, which offers a beautiful view for only one more mile (round trip).

Map

Parking

Coming from Round Hill, you have two parking lots to choose from:

  • Raven Rocks: On your right at the intersection of Rte 7 and Pine Grove Rd (SR 679). This lot is closest to the trailhead, but is much smaller and fills up fast. Pay attention to the signs and do not park on the side of Pine Grove Rd unless you want to risk getting towed.
  • Bear’s Den: On your left at the intersection of Rte 7 and Blue Ridge Mountain Road (SR 601). This lot is much bigger, but requires you to cross Rte 7 to reach the trailhead.

 

Bear's Den Parking Lot

Raven Rocks Parking Lot