Laurel Hill is one of the newest trail systems in the region. This property is now maintained by The Fairfax County Park Authority, following their take-over of the retired Lorton Correctional Facility. The newly developed trails criss cross the open fields and woods of the original facility connecting in several places with the 41-mile long Fairfax County Cross County Trail (CCT).
While on the trail, riders will note that most of the original building infrastructure is still in place (although much of it is in various states of disrepair). Although intended for multi-use, the trail system was designed by mountain bikers with a great flowing experience in mind. There are, however, a few advanced trail features in specific skill areas of the trail. This experience is in plain sight of the original guard towers, prison buildings, old inmate work farms, utility buildings, and other remnants of a once large correctional facility.
The trail network crosses active roads and driveways, including Lorton and Furnace roads. Riders should exercise caution crossing these roads, especially as drivers will not be used to seeing cyclists in these areas. Some sight lines are limited. Additionally, most of this trail system is open to hikers and equestrians. Look out for other trail users and follow IMBAs Rules of the Trail
There are many trailheads to access the trail system, but two of the most utilized are at the Equestrian Center and the Giles Run Meadow Park parking lots. From the Giles Run parking lot, the trail starts right next to the road (Giles Run Meadow Trail
) ride natural surfaced singletrack until you reach Giles Run stream and walk your bike across large boulders. Continue riding until you reach the Fairfax County Cross County Trail (CCT) and take a left/south. Giles Run will be below you at times which can be seen through the trees. There are some bridges and pine groves. Ride the CCT until you reach Lorton Road, the singletrack continues once you cross the road. There to two trailheads after the road crossing (one immediately afterward) and the other about 500 feet along the former railroad bed.
You are now entering onto the Pasture Loop
. You can go left or right, but once you reach the gravel road, you can go further south and meet up with the more challenging Slaughter House lake Accotink loop (the old Slaughterhouse Loop
is at the trailhead (yes, it was a real). Do the loop and backtrack on the same gravel road uphill and take your first right. This trail will take you behind the old Dairy Farm building (soon to be the Equestrian Center stables).
This trail will dump you out back on the Pasture Loop
, turn right and follow the tree line. The Power Station Loop
trailhead will be on your right. Make sure you take the second trailhead which will make you do the loop clockwise. About 2/3's into the loop there are some table top jumps.
Exit this loop back on the Pasture Loop
away from the trash incinerator property, take a right fork up to and cross Furnace Road and do the Apple Orchard Loop
(either direction is equally fun).
Cross back over Furnace Road and back onto the Pasture Loop
. You'll soon see the equestrian center and you've completed most of the trail. Continue riding until you run out of time.