Rock Creek Park

Rock Creek Park Welcome to the official page of Rock Creek Park, a unit of the National Park Service--www.nps.gov/rocr. This page is maintained by park staff.

An oasis in our nation's capital, the park offers hiking and biking trails, historical sites and exhibits, nature and planetarium programs and more.

Operating as usual

National Park Service
12/24/2020

National Park Service

Find Peace in Parks!

Whether you think the weather outside is frightful or delighful, stay connected with national parks in-person and virtually as the year comes to an end and a new one begins!

❄️ Stay connected with national parks across the country with online resources and virtual experiences.

❄️ Visiting a park? Recreate responsibly and help protect America's treasures while looking out for each other's health and safety.

❄️ Find inspiration exploring some of the scenic views of nature and cultural places in parks. Share some of your favorites.

See more ways to connect at https://www.nps.gov/subjects/npscelebrates/find-peace-in-parks.htm

#FindingPeace #FindYourPark

Image: Collage of outdoor and other park-related shapes in the form of a fir tree.

You don’t need a #flashlight to visit Rock Creek Park!    Rock Creek Park is only open during daylight hours—from sunris...
12/21/2020

You don’t need a #flashlight to visit Rock Creek Park!

Rock Creek Park is only open during daylight hours—from sunrise to sunset. Even though today is the first day of winter and the shortest day of the year, there’s plenty of daylight to enjoy outdoor activities safely. Once the sun goes down, it’s time to head home.

But #LookontheBrightSide! Since today is the shortest day of the year, that means there’s more daylight tomorrow! Our days are going to get longer as we approach spring, which means more daylight to enjoy Rock Creek Park!

#FlashlightDay #wintersolstice #FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque

“Nine Men’s Morris” is a game older than the United States! It has been called “Mill or “Mills” and even “Cowboy Checker...
12/20/2020

“Nine Men’s Morris” is a game older than the United States! It has been called “Mill or “Mills” and even “Cowboy Checkers.” The game is still played today and is easy to set up.

On #GamesDay, we invite you to try your hand at playing this game!

Find a partner. Copy the picture of the board or print the image provided in this post at a larger size. Three squares, four lines, and twelve dots make up your board.

Now get nine “tokens” for each person. Tokens can be little pebbles from outside; pocket change; checkers; or even dried beans, lentils, or corn. (Just make sure each player has a different type of token.)

To start to play, each person places a token on one of the empty dots. The goal is to line up three of your pieces in a row. Three pieces in a row is called a “Mill.”

Once the first pieces have been placed on the board, players take turns moving their game pieces to open dots. You may not skip dots, so the dots are like stop lights. When you have three pieces in a straight line (horizontal or vertical) you can remove one of your opponent’s pieces from the board—just not from your opponent’s mill unless there is no other option. The game ends when one player has only two pieces on the board, since this person can no longer make a mill.

Will you give it a try? Let us know how it goes or post a photo of your game in action!

#FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque #findyourpeace #findyourpiece #playgames #games

Like everyone else, many of our park events have been cancelled or moved to #virtual platforms this year, but we wanted ...
12/19/2020

Like everyone else, many of our park events have been cancelled or moved to #virtual platforms this year, but we wanted to share a highlight from the park’s employee holiday meeting last year. As part of a #teamwork development exercise, groups of park employees worked together to customize three store-bought gingerbread house kits to recreate some of the park’s iconic buildings. Groups were given the kits, plus a few additional items to help create unique features. Extra features included pieces to represent Peirce Mill’s waterwheel; #pretzel logs for the Joaquin Miller Cabin; and #pretzels, #cookies, and #peppermints for a cannon and cannonballs at the Battleground National Cemetery Lodge.

#FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque #rockcreekpark #findpeace #gingerbreadhouses #historicstructures

Located near the U.S. Naval Observatory on Massachusetts Avenue is the Kahlil Gibran Memorial. Gibran was a Lebanese-bor...
12/18/2020
Kahlil Gibran Memorial (U.S. National Park Service)

Located near the U.S. Naval Observatory on Massachusetts Avenue is the Kahlil Gibran Memorial. Gibran was a Lebanese-born artist, poet, and playwright. His family moved to Boston, where his literary and artistic talents first came to light. In 1905, he published نبذة في فن الموسيقى or “A Profile of the Art of Music.”

Gibran wrote in Arabic and English. Eight of his fifteen books of poetry or plays were originally published in Arabic while the others were published in English. Gibran died in 1931 in New York City and was buried in Bsharri, Lebanon. After his death, five Arabic Language plays were published posthumously.

Gibran is best known for his 1923 work titled “The Prophet." The work has been translated into more than 100 languages and is considered one of the best-selling books of all time.

The fountain at the memorial is off for the season, but the site is open to the public from dawn to dusk. To learn more about the memorial, visit the website at https://www.nps.gov/places/000/kahlil-gibran-memorial.htm

#findyourpark #encuentratuparque #ArabicLanguageDay #Memorial #rockcreekpark

Gibran was a Lebanese-born poet most famous for his 1923 book "The Prophet," a collection of twenty-six prose poems. The book grew in popularity through the 1960s counterculture movement. Because of its popularity, Gibran is reported to be the third-best-selling poet in world history, behind Shakesp...

When you turn on the radio or enter a store this time of year, there’s a good chance you will hear a song about “chestnu...
12/14/2020
American Chestnuts in Rock Creek (U.S. National Park Service)

When you turn on the radio or enter a store this time of year, there’s a good chance you will hear a song about “chestnuts roasting on a open fire.”

Did you know that American chestnut trees used to comprise a large proportion of forests in this part of the U.S.? The vast majority of these trees were killed by a chestnut blight during the first half of the 20th century, but there are a few survivors. A 2014 survey found 20 American chestnut trees in Rock Creek Park. Learn more about the trees and the survey on our website:
https://www.nps.gov/articles/american-chestnuts-in-rock-creek.htm

#roastchestnutsday #findyourpark #enquentratuparque #americanchestnut #trees

In 1904, a deadly fungus began killing American chestnut trees, once one of the most dominant trees of the eastern U.S. Despite overwhelming odds, some American chestnut trees survive today in Rock Creek Park.

Rock Creek Park is an excellent place to celebrate the #DayoftheHorse (today) and any day. With miles of bridle trails, ...
12/13/2020

Rock Creek Park is an excellent place to celebrate the #DayoftheHorse (today) and any day. With miles of bridle trails, generations of Washingtonians have enjoyed horseback riding in Rock Creek Park, including this group of equestrians who enjoyed stops at both Peirce Mill and one of the fords that crossed Rock Creek.

You can still enjoy a horseback ride in Rock Creek Park through the Rock Creek Park Horse Center. Learn more at:
https://rockcreekhorsecenter.com/
***Note: Services are limited during COVID-19

#findyourpark #EncuentraTuParque #rockcreekpark #DayOfTheHorse #RecreateResponsibly

Photo Credit: Library of Congress no photographer listed
Both photographs are dated between 1909 and 1932

Have you ever finished a long hike in Rock Creek Park and realized that you probably dropped something important while o...
12/11/2020

Have you ever finished a long hike in Rock Creek Park and realized that you probably dropped something important while on the trail?

Many people turn items they’ve found on trails in to park rangers or the U.S. Park Police. Park staff tracks these items, holds them for 60 days, and then donates or disposes of them. If you’ve lost something, you can report it, and ask a staff member to check and see if it has been turned in. By filing a report with us, staff can contact you if the item comes in later.

Even during COVID-19's temporary facility closures, rangers keep track of items they find while monitoring the park and things people have left outside the Nature Center on the information table.

Next time you’ve lost something in the park, do the following:

1. 👣Retrace your steps to try to find the item.

2. ☎️Contact the National Park Service at 202-895-6000 or [email protected] with details about your lost item, potential location where lost, and a phone number where we can reach you.

3. ☎️Contact the U.S. Park Police at (202) 426-7716. The USPP stores lost property separately.

You can’t beat the sense of relief and peace that comes when you are reunited with a special item that has been lost.

#findyourpark #encuentratuparque #findpeace #rockcreekpark #lostandfound #lostandfoundday

Photo Credit: NPS
Photo Caption: A photograph of items in the Lost and Found cache at the Nature Center.

The National Park Service will start work to improve accessibility and rehabilitate the historic landscape at Meridian H...
12/10/2020

The National Park Service will start work to improve accessibility and rehabilitate the historic landscape at Meridian Hill Park this month. This project focuses primarily on the lower plaza level of the park, near W Street NW, and is expected to be completed in summer 2022.

Meridian Hill Park features one of America’s earliest examples of decorative exposed aggregate concrete. The project includes replacement and repair of damaged historic walls, walkways and stairs to improve safety and preserve historic architectural elements of the park. The National Park Service will also install a universally accessible route from 16th Street NW to the lower plaza level of the park.

The National Park Service will replace hazardous trees and restore shrubs to reflect the park’s historic landscape plan. The park will install a frame that will allow trees to be trained and trimmed to form an archway, known as a "pleached allée." This archway, which was part of the original landscape design, will frame the distant view of the Washington Monument. The National Park Service will also update storm drains and inlets.

During the project, visitors will not have access to the lower level of the park. In addition, small sections of the upper level of the park will close temporarily for specific parts of the project and to stage equipment. The rest of the park will remain open throughout the rehabilitation.

NOTE: This phase of ongoing park restoration will not include repairs to the cascading fountain.

Photo 1 Caption: Lower plaza of Meridian Hill Park looking west from statue of President Buchanan

Photo 1 Credit: Library of Congress

Photo 1 Alt-Text: View of long plaza with long pool and small fountains within, cascading fountain flowing down to the right, and trees surrounding the edges of the plaza.

#rockcreekpark #meridianhillpark #DC #dclife #mycooldc

If you could visit Rock Creek Park in another era, when would you choose? Today is #PretendtobeaTimeTravelerDay! Grab yo...
12/09/2020

If you could visit Rock Creek Park in another era, when would you choose? Today is #PretendtobeaTimeTravelerDay! Grab your time machine of choice...

Perhaps you’d like to visit Peirce Mill on a busy 19th-century day to experience the noise, dust, and hard labor involved in running a mill?

From 1861-1865, you might have landed in one of several military forts in what is now the park. Forts such as DeRussy, Stevens, and Reno stood ready to defend the city against enemy attack during the Civil War. This became a reality in July 1864 during the Battle of Fort Stevens: https://www.nps.gov/places/fort-stevens.htm.

Maybe you would like to drop in on a concert or play at the Carter Barron Amphitheater instead?

Or, would you choose to stop in on your favorite visit to the park? Was it pre- or post-COVID? What were you doing?

So, what year and location in Rock Creek Park would you choose and why?

Photo Credit: Photo of Carter Barron Amphitheater on opening night in 1965. Credit: NPS/Abbie Rower. MRCE, NCRO Photos, Series 1, Box 92

Alt Text: A small group performs on a stage with trees behind it and stone walls on each end of the stage. A large crowd in the foreground watches the performance.

#rockcreekpark #timetravel #findyourpark #EncuentraTuParque

Just as people change decorations in their homes to celebrate holidays and seasons, so does nature. In the winter, the A...
12/06/2020

Just as people change decorations in their homes to celebrate holidays and seasons, so does nature. In the winter, the American holly shows off its vibrant green glossy leaves and red berries against the stark silhouettes of bare branches nearby. In spring and summer, flowers of many colors dot the forest floor, bushes, and trees. Summer brings forth a lush, green forest, while autumn leaves paint sections and swaths in reds, oranges, golds, and purples.

Let Mother Nature do the decorating when you come to the park. Balloons often break free and get tangled in tree branches. Deflated balloons can injure and kill wildlife who mistake them as food. Please #bekind, #recreateresponsibly, and enjoy the natural beauty of #RockCreekPark.

#findyourpark #encuentratuparque #findpeace #nature

Talk about a holiday custom made for park rangers--today is #WearBrownShoesDay! Traditionally, park rangers’ shoes have ...
12/04/2020

Talk about a holiday custom made for park rangers--today is #WearBrownShoesDay! Traditionally, park rangers’ shoes have been cordovan-colored, a reddish-brown or burgundy-brown in color, but today ranger uniform shoes come in cordovan or basic brown. Cordovan is still the color of our uniform belts and iconic hat bands.

Learn more about the history of the NPS uniform here:
https://www.nps.gov/subjects/hfc/nps-uniform-collection.htm

https://www.nps.gov/articles/breeches-blouses.htm

#parkrangers #NationalParkService #NPS #fashion

Photo Credit: NPS History Collection
Photo Caption: Six Rangers at Aztec Ruins

The U.S. Army attempted to impress local beavers to construct abatis (a field fortification consisting of an obstacle fo...
12/02/2020

The U.S. Army attempted to impress local beavers to construct abatis (a field fortification consisting of an obstacle formed of the branches of trees laid in a row, with the sharpened tops directed outwards, towards the enemy) as part of the Defenses of Washington during the Civil War.

But the beavers didn't give a dam, and fled to the comfort of their log fortifications.

More below...

Nice one, Civil War Defenses of Washington!

#rockcreekpark #beavers

The U.S. Army attempted to impress local beavers to construct abatis (a field fortification consisting of an obstacle formed of the branches of trees laid in a row, with the sharpened tops directed outwards, towards the enemy) as part of the Defenses of Washington during the Civil War.

But the beavers didn't give a dam, and fled to the comfort of their log fortifications.

This beaver was captured by Civil War Defenses of Washington Volunteer-in-Park Alex Calta in Rock Creek Park last week. The beaver was seen near Battery Left of Rock Creek, located southeast of Fort DeRussy and south of Military Road. The 6-gun battery was designed to cover Rock Creek Valley in conjunction with Battery Kingsburg and Battery Sill.

#MayTheFortsBeWithYou

IMAGE:
A beaver walking along the ground in Rock Creek Park.
Courtesy: Alex Calta

Have you ever visited Georgetown and found a moment of peace in the garden behind the Old Stone House?   Located at 3051...
12/01/2020

Have you ever visited Georgetown and found a moment of peace in the garden behind the Old Stone House?

Located at 3051 M Street NW, Old Stone House is the oldest original house left in the District of Columbia. The green space behind the house is part of the original Georgetown survey conducted in 1751. This space was occupied over time by a blacksmith’s shop, a lunchroom, licensed heating and plumbing, clothing shops, domestic residences, and a stables. The lot became an English garden after the federal government purchased the house and land in 1953.

Recent and ongoing renovations in the garden are being done in partnership with the Constitution Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). This includes donations of 12 roses, two benches, and money for development and future installation of an outdoor exhibit. Volunteers from DAR painted the fence and new rose pillars (trellis’), too.

Thank you, DAR Constitution Chapter, as well as the Emily Nelson Chapter NSDAR (roses), for your contributions to making the Old Stone House Garden a more beautiful and welcoming place in the future!

For more information on the Old Stone House, visit our website at https://www.nps.gov/rocr/learn/historyculture/old-stone-house-history.htm

#FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque #Garden #RockCreekPark #AutumnintheGarden #FindPeace

Photo Credit: NPS
Photo Caption: Daughters of the American Revolution, a few community members, and Rock Creek Pakr staff met in the Old Stone House Garden recently (November 14, 2020) in a Socially Distanced event to highlight recent updates and more to come.

We couldn’t pass up the chance to mark #ChocolatesDay today! While Rock Creek Park doesn’t have the right climate to gro...
11/29/2020

We couldn’t pass up the chance to mark #ChocolatesDay today! While Rock Creek Park doesn’t have the right climate to grow cacao (the plant that chocolate comes from), chocolate can be an excellent addition to a homemade trail mix to enjoy while you hike at Rock Creek Park. Chocolate chips, other small chocolate candies, or even chocolate nibs – pieces of chocolate beans without anything - even sugar - added are all excellent additions to trail mix.

If you want to try making your own trail mix, grab some of the following items – or your own favorite ingredients – and experiment with different ratios depending on what you like best. Beware that some ingredients like dried bananas or peanuts can flavor the whole mix if you store the trail mix too long, so consider making only a small batch at a time. For one hiker for an afternoon snack, half a sandwich bag of trail mix is probably a good amount.

Cereal
Mini Pretzels
Granola
Nuts – pick your favorite or add several types
Dried fruit – apricots, raisins, pineapple, banana, etc.
Chocolate or other candy

Put equal (small) amounts of each ingredient in a food container or bag, close the lid or bag, and shake until ingredients are mixed. Add more ingredients to taste.

Once your trail mix is ready, use our website to help you choose a hiking trail to explore, and remember to bring your trail mix to enjoy when you need a snack. Don’t forget water so that you don’t get dehydrated either. https://www.nps.gov/rocr/planyourvisit/hiking.htm

Please share your favorite trail mix ingredients with us below.

Address

5200 Glover Road NW
Washington D.C., DC
20015

Metro Bus accessible

General information

Page Expectations and Guidelines: Welcome to Rock Creek Park's page. We hope this will become a place where fans feel comfortable sharing information and experiences about Rock Creek Park with one another. While this is an open forum, it is also a family friendly one, so please keep your comments and wall posts clean. Please be considerate of other fan's opinions. In addition to keeping it family friendly, we ask that you follow our posting guidelines here. If you do not comply, your message will be removed. We do not allow graphic, obscene, explicit or racial comments or submissions, nor do we allow comments that are abusive, hateful or intended to defame anyone or any organization. We do not allow solicitations or advertisements. This includes promotion or endorsement of any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. Such posts and/or links are subject to deletion. People who continue to post such content and/or links may be subject to page participation restrictions and/or removal from the page. We do not allow attempts to defame or defraud any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. We do not allow comments that suggest or encourage illegal activity. You participate at your own risk, taking personal responsibility for your comments, your username and any information provided. Posting of external links on this site that are intended as advertising (or to drive traffic to websites unrelated to Rock Creek Park), or do not contribute to dialog and discussions about Rock Creek Park may be deleted. People who continue to post such links may be subject to page participation restrictions and/or removal from the page. External links do not constitute official endorsement on behalf of the U.S. National Park Service or the U.S. Department of Interior.

Opening Hours

Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00
Saturday 09:00 - 17:00
Sunday 09:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(202) 895-6000

Alerts

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Videos

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Comments

Does anyone know if the trails leading out of the nature center are clear of ice and snow? We want to walk there tomorrow.
Can you tell me what these are? Anchored in concrete, almost in the creek bed - off Beach Drive near the Jusserand Memorial. UPDATE: Remains of a 1901 footbridge destroyed by Hurricane Agnes in 1972. Thanks to John De Ferrari for his help.
Boulder bridge. #rockcreekpark
Is the Old Stone House still closed?
Do you have any maps for your trails? 😊☺️
How best to report a super stinky dead deer in RCP, just south of the Klingle Ford Bridge? Been there since Saturday...