Summer Fun—Day 81: Hike the Billy Goat Trail

Hike the popular Billy Goat Trail for great views of the Potomac River and a challenging rock scramble.

The scenery is awesome and the trail is a fun workout for families. Due to the challenging terrain the tail is not recommended for kids under the age of 8.

Park at the Great Falls Tavern Visitor Center, head down the C&O Canal towpath (going downstream), cross a bridge and follow the towpath for about a mile. Signs will indicate the entrance to the Billy Goat Trail A — the most popular of the trail's three sections.

The trail includes a 40-foot cliff along the Mather Gorge where hikers must find a way up (or down, depending on the direction they are hiking). A section called “Pothole Alley” has large boulders and jagged rocks that hikers navigate over and around.

Make sure your bring lots of water and wear appropriate shoes.

For more information about the trail, visit Hiking Trails of Great Falls Maryland.

For more hikes, visit our list of 5 scramble hikes for adventurous families.

For more summer fun, check out our 100 days of summer page and our daily calendar of events.

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