Trail Ranger Tuesdays: A New Project and Unexpected Surprises

This entry is part of a weekly series following WABA’s Trail Rangers. The D.C. Trail Ranger Program is giving some needed attention to D.C.’s off-street paved trails and the people who use them with daily patrols, maintenance, and outreach. Each week, you’ll find updates on goings on and improvements on the Met Branch, Anacostia Riverwalk, Marvin Gaye and Suitland Parkway trails.

Over the past months, the Trail Rangers have been busy clipping back pesky and intrusive branches and removing pounds of trash from D.C.’s most used trails, creating a smoother and more enjoyable trail experience for all.  Though trail maintenance is, of course, an ongoing effort, we’re happy to report that the largest obstacles to an easy commute on the Met Branch, Anacostia Riverwalk, and Marvin Gaye Trails are a thing of the past. Moving forward, Trail Rangers will continue to keep the a frequent and cheerful presence on these trails, but will also be committing more time to a new project: the Suitland Parkway Trail.

SPT Trailhead Before SPT Trailhead After

This Suitland Parkway trailhead now has a more inviting entrance

Those familiar with the Suitland Parkway know that the trail is in dire need of a cleanup crew. DDOT will undertake the task of mowing it, and we’re getting our hands dirty, too. Already—after over 9 hours of cleanup time this past week—we removed more than 15 pounds of troublesome debris, glass, and litter from around the trailhead and points north. This is just the start. Expect more detailed updates on the Suitland Parkway Trail to come. For now, here are a few things you might have missed if you haven’t been to the Anacostia or Marvin Gaye Trails recently. They certainly surprised us.

ART Vulnerable trail user

Trail Rangers stopped to help a vulnerable trail user cross the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail.  It’s a thankless job.

Marvin Gaye Trail An unexpected tree bloom on the Marvin Gaye Trail