• dogwood across creek

    Prince William Forest

    Park Virginia

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  • Visitor Center Remodel 2014

    Over the next several months there will be new changes coming to the Visitor Center. Presently we are remodeling the bookstore area to give it more of a country theme. Next the exibit area will get all new exhibits. Thank you for your patience and support

  • Oak Ridge Campground and Chopawamsic Backcountry Closure

    Oak Ridge Campground and Chopawamsic Backcountry area will be closed December 1st, 2013 to February 28th, 2014.

  • Firewood

    Outside firewood is prohibited in Prince William Forest Park, unless it is certified USDA 'bug free' firewood. Dead and downed wood may be collected from designated areas for use while in the park. Help us protect the forest from invasive species!

Oak Ridge Trail

Oak Ridge Trail: Site of 2006 Wildfire

Site of 2006 Wildfire

National Park Service

Oak Ridge Trail (1.6 miles; 2.6 km)

Oak Ridge Trail is a short, level trail that starts at Oak Ridge Campground and ends on Old Black Top Road. The trail is marked with yellow blazes and has opportunities to see beaver activity.

At the beginning of the hike you will notice burn marks on most the trees in the forest. This is the result of a 318-acre wildland fire that began near the B-loop of Oak Ridge Campground. The fire began on March 27, 2006 and was finally extinguished on April 4, 2006 due to the efforts of over 70 wildland firefighters. To view the full story refer to park newsletter, The Oasis, Vol. 1 Issue 8.

 
Small creek along Oak Ridge Trail

Small creek along Oak Ridge Trail

National Park Service

Just down from the campground, South Valley Trail will branch off to the right. After about 15 minutes, you will cross over Scenic Drive. Continue on for another 20 minutes and you will come to a small creek meandering through the forest.

 
Beaver Dam

Beaver Dam

National Park Service

Keep your eye out along the creek for beaver activity. The beaver was extirpated in this area by the late 1700s a result of the fur trade. Reintroduction occurred in the 1950s and populations have flourished.
 
Ground Cedar along trail edges

Ground Cedar along trail edges

National Park Service

Notice the ground cedar that covers the forest floor. Ground cedar (Lycopodium complanatum) is small, perennial plant with horizontal stems that creep along the forest floor. They grow up to a meter long with flattened, cedar-like stems.

 

Did You Know?

Eastern Box Turtle

Capable of living as long as 100 years, the Eastern Box Turtle is Prince William Forest Park's longest living reptile, and if conditions are just right, can spend their entire life in an area no larger than a football field.