Banshee Reeks Nature Preserve nestled in the heart of Loudoun County on 775 acres next to Goose Creek, has more than 20 miles of hiking trails. The unusual name originates from the 19th Century Farm where in Gaelic 'Banshee' is a female spirit, and 'Reeks' refers to hills and dales. The preserve allows dogs on a leash but horses and bikes are not permitted. The trails and park are only open Saturday and Sunday from 8-4, with the Nature Center at the main parking area open on the 3rd weekend of the month.
As you can see on the excellent trails map produced by the Banshee Reeks Nature Preserve, there is a virtual labyrinth of trails to choose from. The 6 mile/3hr circuit listed here uses the majority of the perimeter trails, but you could spend months exploring the different trail combinations.
Interactive Hike Map BelowPrintable
Topo Hike Map (PDF)
Hike route in Drag the map with your mouse using the icon Zoom with the controls on the left Mouse-over icons in the map below for location shots
Calculate roughly how many calories you could burn on the Banshee Reeks hike:
Reviews For The Banshee Reeks Hike (5 Most Recent)
Our small hiking group was looking for a safe hike on Sunday 11/20/16 when Gale Force winds were predicted for the region. We have learned to avoid the danger of being on the ridge of the mountains in a stand of old trees in high winds. We wanted something on a hillside with southern exposure and young trees and vegetation for protection. We couldn't have picked a better hike. Gale Force winds, 45-56 mph, were reported at nearby Godfrey Airport in Leesburg, VA during our hike. We felt the wind but only up to 25 mph by the visitors center but for most the hike, we felt the wind to be up to 15 mph.. It was windy but the terrain gave us good protection.
We liked the trails with the good signage that actually matched the map we printed from this website.
We had the trails to ourselves and enjoyed every minute of the hike. The place merits a revisit for us. It would be interesting to see it in the spring. I can imagine lots of birds and other wildlife. Even saw evidence of Pocket Gophers, something we have not seen before in hiking.
Don't let our 3 star rating discourage anyone from visiting. It might be the lack of difficulty that would not appeal to many. The short trails, streams, and the Goose Creek add a lot. There was a bench placed along one of the nicest trails with a view of the woods and a stream. It was thought-inducing moment to pause there and enjoy being there. You could draw the scene, create a painting, write a few lines for a poem, or just enjoy.
It would seem like a good place for families with small children because the trails are easy and the short trails with many intersections give a chance to modify the route according to interest and endurance.
Date of Hike: Sunday, April 24, 2016
Nice meadow hike. Especially enjoyed the creek (Goose Creek Trail) and the pond (Spring House Trail). Watch out for ticks though! Found 3 on me and 1 on my husband
Hans (und Heidi)
Date of Hike: Sunday, February 07, 2016
Heidi always sees the good and gives a 4 star,and was charmed by the old buildings I thought less of this place w 2 stars. It was closer to home, that was nice mit limited time for the Supper Bowl . This day was 50 degrees with 8"-12" snow remaining in the low lands. The snow become like walking on a memory mattress so it made for a pleasant walk.
We walked the Old Log trail in mostly snow, and shortly upon heading north up the Bank barn trail the area was flooded , being frozen over. here and there. We swung wide of the trail following the animal trails to find suitable crossing and bushwhacked back to the trail. Return was by the Greenway route, which was a pleasant mud slog. We saw no one on the trail, and were the first to walk the Bank barn Trail since the big snow.
The wildlife here is abundant as the tracks from turkeys, critters and deer were everywhere. I would take heed of the warning signs that the place is infested with ticks.
Date of Hike: Saturday, January 16, 2016
I'm so glad this hike is finally on here. I've done this hike many times over the years, but not always along the same path that's described above. The park features many interconnecting trails so that you can build your own hike depending on what you'd like to see. Because the park is circular and the paths do a good job of criss-crossing the entire park, this is a great place for photographers since you can stay out well into golden hour and not necessarily have to hike out in the dark, or for people with limited hiking ability (older, younger, or inexperienced). It's also a great place to test out orienteering skills, since you can only get *so* lost in such a small park.
Wildlife is a big draw here. On any given day you can see many species of hawks and even eagles, songbirds, and mammals from the trails. The museum they have on the grounds is interesting and would serve as a good primer for people unfamiliar with the local ecology, or for children who can learn what to look for while they're out on the trail.
The area changes dramatically depending on the season, so this hike is worth multiple trips.