Seneca Creek Greenway Trail Part 1

I went for a short trip of roughly 5 miles this weekend on the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail. It was a perfect autumn morning. A bit chilly at the start with my car’s temperature sensor showing 47 Fahrenheit, but it quickly warmed up to low fifties mid-hike. It’s time to pull out the gloves and the overcoats for those early morning hikes. I was even thinking to myself that I needed to find where I left my hand warmer pouches leftover from last year. My hands freeze at anything below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, so I need to make sure that I’m fully stocked for the winter. Unfortunately, no amounts of layers will do to keep my hands warm, so I’ve resorted to those disposable hand warmers to keep me comfortable.

Riley's Lockhouse

Riley's Lockhouse

My friend and I started at the C&O’s Riley’s Lock (Lock 24) in Seneca, Maryland, and we walked on the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail a few miles to a parking lot off of Berryville Rd. There is plenty of parking around Riley’s Lock. Even on a Sunday, we did not have any issues finding a place to park. When you get to the lock, take the time to look at Riley's Lockhouse and the Seneca Creek Aqueduct before getting on your way. There are a few educational boards around explaining the history of the place.

Bridge over Seneca Creek Aquaduct

Bridge over Seneca Creek Aquaduct

It can be a bit tricky if you don’t know where the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail begins. From the parking lot, make your way up the stairs behind Riley’s Lockhouse and once on the C&O towpath, cross the bridge over to your right and shortly thereafter the trail will begin on your right. Once on the trail, make a moment to look at the remnants of the Seneca Stonecutting Mill, which is a few feet in. The mill was constructed around 1837 and is known for the Seneca red sandstone it produced for many of our area’s buildings such at the Smithsonian Institution building known as the “Castle” in Washington, D.C.

Keep yours eyes open on the right after the bridge to find the trail leading to the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail

Keep yours eyes open on the right after the bridge to find the trail leading to the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail

The trail was in great condition and on the easy side without too much hills. There is one road crossing (River Rd) about half a mile in. The next road you will see is Berryville road, which is 1.3 miles away. You will be rewarded on this trip by a beautiful view of Seneca Creek when you get to your destination.

A view of Seneca Creek from Berryville Rd.

A view of Seneca Creek from Berryville Rd.

My homework for this trip was to find out the names of some of our findings on this trip. I am sharing with you my thoughts on what they are. Chime in if you disagree!

Caterpillar of a Brown Hooded Owlet moth (Cucullia convexipennis)

Caterpillar of a Brown Hooded Owlet moth (Cucullia convexipennis)

Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus) mushrooms

Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus) mushrooms

I have no idea! Help!

I have no idea! Help!

Whorled Wood Aster (Oclemena acuminata) Completely unsure of this one!

Whorled Wood Aster (Oclemena acuminata) Completely unsure of this one!