When Tom and I went to Washington DC, we tried to get to as many National Park sites as possible in our three days. With the abundance of National Park sites in DC, it isn’t hard to find one. One of the parks we visited (a fast visit) was Greenbelt Park in Maryland.
It didn’t take us long to realize that the abundance of parks around Washington DC was because DC is special territory. In any other city, most of these parks would be metro parks. They are not particularly big or scenic. Instead, they ring the city and preserve green space for the residents of DC and the surrounding areas.
Greenbelt Park has 1,100 acres and – unique among the park sites around DC – a campground. After posting about our visit on Facebook, I found out a number of rangers I know worked at Greenbelt Park. Unfortunately the campground is closed for renovations. The primitive campground has 174 sites which can accommodate RVs up to 36 feet. The trails and headquarters are open during the renovations. I had to go to headquarters to get the Greenbelt stamp.
The trails range in length from 1 mile to 5.3 miles. I’m sure all these trails are lovely. We did not hike any of them because, like I said, it was a fast visit. The Dogwood trail goes through land that is being “recovered.” The Blueberry trail moves through a mature forest, marsh, and bottomland along a stream. The longest trail travels around the perimeter of the park.
Although we are glad Washington DC has these green spaces, it feels odd to call them National Park sites. They are lovely metro parks and people who live in and around DC use them and enjoy them. On the day we visited we saw joggers, bicyclists, and walkers. A nice, although ordinary, park.