Mount Vernon Trail

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Map of the Trail

The Mount Vernon Trail (MVT) is a 17 miles (27 km) paved bicycle and pedestrian path in Northern Virginia between Rosslyn and George Washington's home at Mount Vernon. The trail connects the easternmost portions of Arlington County, the City of Alexandria, and Fairfax County, and travels mostly on dedeciated trail with a small portion on city streets. As part of U.S. Bike Route 1, the MVT opened in May 1972 as a gravel path[1] and was subsequently expanded and paved.

The MVT is the completed portions of the much larger mid-Atlantic Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail.


The trail parallels the George Washington Memorial Parkway and the western bank of the Potomac River. Most of the northern half of the trail is open with views of the river and of Washington, D.C. The southern 8 miles (13 km) below Alexandria is largely wooded with limited river views.

From its northern trailhead at a parking lot near Theodore Roosevelt Island, the MVT travels south near the Potomac River until it turns inland to pass between the Parkway and the west side of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Before reaching the airport, the trail passes through Gravelly Point, where there are often views of arriving and departing airplane. A connecting trail travels through the airport and provides access to the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport Metro Station and the Abingdon Plantation historic site.

The Mount Vernon Trail at Belle Haven

After passing the airport, the trail crosses Four Mile Run and continues south on city streets into Old Town Alexandria. After crossing under the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and over Hunting Creek, the trail continues south along the Potomac River, traveling near Belle Haven, the west side of Dyke Marsh and the east side of Fort Hunt Park. The last mile before reaching Mount Vernon is a curving uphill inland climb.

Connecting trails[edit]

The Mount Vernon Trail connects to other area hiker/biker routes including:


Scenes along the Mount Vernon Trail, from south to north:


  1. ^ Eisner, Mary (1972). "She's Winning Bike Battle". Washington Star. Washington, DC. Retrieved 2014-07-30. 


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°42′36″N 77°03′41″W / 38.710008°N 77.061351°W / 38.710008; -77.061351