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Day Hike, Ivy Creek Natural Area, Charlottesville, VA

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This 3.5 mile loop hike occurred on Tuesday, January 24, 2023. It was just me on this one.

I left Manassas, VA around 8:30 AM. I stopped at the Old Country Store on US29 south of Culpeper, VA to get some breakfast. They didn't have much in the way of bakery stuff. I got some cream cheese blondies and I also got a

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Not too far from here in 2004 we did what started as an 17 mile backpacking trip but ended up being an 18 mile day hike.

BLT from their deli. Both were very good.

My arrival time was around 10:40 AM and I was on the trail by 10:45 AM. I used the Waze app to get me here and used the AllTrails app to get me around this series of trails. Verizon cell service had three or four bars all the way around this trail.

Now, I was supposed to hike the red, yellow and green trails to form a 4 mile loop. However, at the beginning of this hike there was a sign that said "Mud Detour". Since the red trail was muddy in that area I took this detour. The problem was that the mud detour took me away from the yellow trail. If you look at the image on the right side of this page that says Mud Detour, you will see a trail that continues straight. That was the yellow trail. So I turned right onto this detour and missed getting on the yellow loop. That shortened this trail from 4 miles down to 3.6 miles.

So I proceeded on the red trail. I crossed Martins Branch and then came to a junction with the green trail. I then went up a long hill and did a small loop until I got to the top of that hill.

From there I intersected the red trail again and got back on it. I crossed two pipeline rights of way or ROW's, did a big down and then another up. I then came to the confluence of Ivy Creek and the Rivanna River. This body of water then became the Rivanna River reservoir.

The trail then went along an inlet of the reservoir, crossed Martins Branch again and started another up. At this point the red trail branched off into two trails. One was a shortcut. I was tired so I took it. This shortcut probably saved me one or two tenths of a mile.

At the top of the hillI encountered a paved trail. I turned right on it, found a restroom with pit toilets that I used, then I returned to my vehicle.

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It was 12 noon when I finished this hike. There was an historical marker near the parking lot that stated that this area was one of the largest African American farmsteads after emancipation. I'm glad that it has been preserved.

After I returned to my vehicle I made the long trip home and arrived around 2:00 PM. I had wanted to hike at this park for a long time. I'm glad that I finally got to do so. This was a good hike.

Mike C

Map of where I hiked


Entrance Sign
   Entrance Sign.
   By Mike Calabrese
Red trail marker
   Red trail marker.
   By Mike Calabrese
Mud detour    Mud detour.
   By Mike Calabrese

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Good trail signing    Good trail signing.
   By Mike Calabrese
Martins Branch
   Martins Branch.
   By Mike Calabrese
Green Trail Marker
   Green Trail Marker.
   By Mike Calabrese
Obligatory selfie
   Obligatory selfie.
   By Mike Calabrese
Ivy Creek/Rivanna River Reservoir
   Ivy Creek/Rivanna River Reservoir.
   By Mike Calabrese
Historical marker
   Historical marker.
   By Mike Calabrese






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