Greenbelt Park

Maryland has been hit with some wet weather the past few weeks, but with skies clearing up, I decided to take a stroll down the street from the Greenbelt Metro Station and explore the nearby Greenbelt Park.

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The park sits roughly 12 miles from downtown Washington, D.C., and hikers can choose to stay within sight of civilization or wander through a more secluded area of the park with several different hiking trails. Want a view of the surrounding apartments and high-rise buildings? Check out the Perimeter Trail. But if you’re looking for something a little less urban, I recommend the Dogwood Nature Trail.

Despite the proximity of a busy street, I spotted several animals on my hike – a group of deer, bluejays, chipmunks and — oh yes — a fox.

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Okay, so the fox was a picture on a sign leading into the park, but you can spot some live specimens along the trails if you’re luckier than me.

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The land used to be home to Algonquin Indians, but centuries later, the park was part of a special project under the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration. After the Great Depression, a D.C. businessman proposed that local residents looking for jobs could find work creating a “garden city,” and one of the three sites chosen for the project was Greenbelt, MD.

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Greenbelt Park is part of the National Park Service, and visitors can enjoy camping, picnic areas and playgrounds if hiking isn’t your thing.  The campground is open 24 hours each day, but check online to view the hours of operation for hiking trails and picnic areas.

 

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