Saturday, the DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) in partnership with the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) and the Student Conservation Association (SCA) officially opens the District’s first unpaved trail in the DPR park system.
Located in Ward 7, the Pope Branch Trail is approximately one-mile along the Pope Branch of the Anacostia River. The ribbon-cutting takes place at 10 a.m. at the Pope Branch Trail (Branch Avenue and M Street SE). District residents will be able to enjoy the scenic trail and take in the season’s fall foliage.
“We are excited to celebrate and reveal another hidden gem in the District, in particularly one that is East of the River, where it is environmentally rich and sound,” said DPR Director Delano Hunter.
“Thank you to the community and our partners who have helped to make the Pope Branch Trail a destination, especially for hiking enthusiasts, for years to come.”
During the summer of 2018 and 2019, DPR hosted two SCA crews consisting of 12 high school students and two adult crew leaders working to establish a hike-worthy trail. The crews transformed the space by cleaning the park and cutting a new trail. Aside from making inconvenient elements more accessible, the crew also prioritized making the trail safer installing eight bog bridges to allow hikers to pass over wet spots. Additionally, the crew built a turnpike out of logs, small rocks, and mineral soil to elevate the trail out of a long mud puddle. T
he Student Conservation Association has led several conservation projects that continuously engage District youth in grades K-12, in hands-on service in neighborhoods they call home.
For more information about the Pope Branch Trail visit DPR.events.