This is a bi-weekly lifestyle column from Reston resident Julie McCool, who blogs about local parks, hikes, bike trails, historic sites, restaurants, wineries, breweries, events, and getaways on her Northern Virginia travel blog FuninFairfaxVA.com.
Reston residents are fortunate to have easy access to paved and natural trails throughout town that are ideal for outdoor fun. When your family outing includes a stroller, however, the choices narrow.
We’ve identified several stroller friendly paths in Northern Virginia that are easy to navigate and provide interesting diversions whether you’re inside or behind the stroller. Most of the paths are paved, but we’ve also found dirt trails that are navigable with a sturdy stroller.
The Glade Stream Valley Trail in south Reston follows a paved path through The Glade, a stream that has been restored to reduce flooding and erosion.
We recommend the section between Twin Branches Road and Soapstone Drive, which is mostly shady with pretty stream and woodland views. Start at the Twin Branches end if you want a hilly workout, begin at Soapstone for a level stretch, or include both in a nearly four-mile circuit with a stop at the Walker Nature Center.
Nearby, Meadowlark Gardens in Vienna offers another paved path with a mix of steep and gentle hills, and lots of appeal for every age. Children love to watch koi from the gazebo and play in the children’s garden.
You can also explore a unique hemi-marsh from dirt trails and boardwalks at the Huntley Meadows Park, a hidden gem in Alexandria.
Read about more stroller-friendly trails on Fun in Fairfax.
Photo: Huntley Meadows Park/Credit: Julie McCool