The Manassas Battlefield Park is steeped in history. The site of two major civil war battles the park has two main loops that pass many historic points of interest, including the spot where confederate General Thomas Jackson got his nickname 'Stonewall Jackson'. Within the rolling plains of Virginia the hikes here are appropriate for all ages.
The Manassas Battlefield Park has many side trails, so remember, when you get to an intersection just follow the blue blazed (blue disks on posts) trail. Once entering the tree stand you will pass a clearing on the left in 0.2 miles, cross a wooden footbridge, and arrive at the first intersection in 0.5 miles.
The blue blazed trail will now makes a hairpin turn to the right towards the Stone Bridge. After descending slightly, veering back to the left, then turning to the right again the trail passes through a low lying area and crosses a 0.2 mile wooded foot walk before arriving at the Stone Bridge and Bull Run.
Do not cross the Stone Bridge, but turn left along Bull Run for 0.3 miles before the trail turns left uphill and exiting into another field. Continue to follow the trail as it passes through the field then enters a tree stand again and passing the Carter family cemetery in 0.2 miles. From the cemetery junction continue on the blue trail as it exits into another field in another 0.5 miles. Continue straight to the top of Mathews Hill and line of cannons.
Turn left downhill past the canons through two fields before descending to the intersection of US29, Sudley Road and location of the Stone House which served as a field hospital in both battles fought here.
Cross US29 at the intersection following the trail over a wooden footbridge and uphill past the Henry House before arriving back at the National Park Service visitors center.
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Reviews For The Manassas B.F. Bull Run Hike (5 Most Recent)
This hike is worth doing for the history alone. Pretty surreal to walk amongst the grounds of the first real battle of the Civil War and the place where Stonewall Jackson earned his name. I got there around 8:30 on a Saturday morning and the parking lot was full. If going just for the hiking/solitude the proximity to route 29 and 234 would really sour the experience as you're close to both for a good portion of the loop.
I did this as a trail run and it seems to be a really popular place for runners. For good reason-the trails are really well groomed and a nice mix of dirt and grass trails. If you're going for the first time definitely take a map or take a good look at the map before you start. As I was running I decided to forgo holding onto the map and just follow the blazes which turned out to be a mistake as the loop isn't marked very clearly. Blue blazes are also used for the bull run #2 loop which I mistakenly ended up on but didn't realize it for about a mile.
Date of Hike: Saturday, November 03, 2012
I give this 5/5 stars not because of the trail itself, but because of the history and culture that is a part of it. I ran about 6 miles of this trail, and it's was a wonderful run. The workers at the Visitor's Center were extremely friendly and helpful, and described the route to me, and gave me free maps. Be sure to pay the nominal fee -- it's well worth the maintenance of this treasure.
If I had hiked this, I might give it fewer stars, but as a run, it was perfect. It was a nice variety of wooded areas, wide, grassy battlefields, and slightly technical slopes. I had to cross roads twice, but that's inevitable in a populated area. I stopped at a few of the markers to read about the history of the battle, and it was astounding to see the sheer size of the battle and how it covered so much ground and involved various skirmishes. I hadn't visited a Civil War battlefield since I visited Gettysburg 20 years ago, so it put things into perspective and greatly enhanced the running experience. Definitely check it out.
Date of Hike: Sunday, September 30, 2012
The weather was beautiful, there weren't too many people, & we had a wonderful time wandering through the trails in the fields & the woods, cutting through the bridle paths, & stopping at the historic houses, gravestones, & markers. Not totally flat, but quite minor elevation changes. We broke a sweat at times but were only a bit tired by the end. We brought a dog & it had fun too. Highly recommended if you want a real work-out you wouldn't stop so much, but then you'd miss a lot of history.
Date of Hike: Sunday, September 02, 2012
I hiked this trail with my dog this afternoon. We had never done this hike before and I was not sure we would like it. I am happy to say that I was way off. With the map and the abundant trail markings, it was a breeze to navigate. I would have given this an additional star however, I had to take one away because the trail crosses over Rt. 29 - twice. And one of those crossings requires you to run across 29...no light, no crosswalk. That is just an accident waiting to happen. There really should be tunnels under 29.
Date of Hike: Friday, August 31, 2012
I've been to Manassas Battlefield Park numerous times since moving to Virginia in January, but today was the first time I hiked the Bull Run, and it was a nice little hike overall. Not too crowded today, not too hot, a nice breeze, and not overly stressful.....