“Elementary, my dear Watson.”
A familiar quote, but one Sherlock Holmes never actually said in any of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories! But this is about a different Holmes – Holmes Run — and an “elementary” walk with a local hiking group. The walk had all the basics needed for a nice morning stroll: a beautiful sunny 70 degree morning, about sixty friendly walkers, and a pleasant route along Holmes Run in Alexandria, Virginia.
Holmes Run Trail starts near Lake Barcroft at Columbia Pike and follows the stream southeast to where it joins Cameron Run adjacent to the I-495 Beltway. We only used the middle portion, enjoying the woods, wildlife, and stream crossings walking upstream from Charles E. Beatley Jr. Library at Duke Street to Dora Kelley Nature Preserve and back. A map of our route is here.
At a moderate pace, and with a break at Jerome Buddie Ford Nature Center, the walk took less than an hour and a half. While I like hiking in distant locations like the Shenandoah Mountains, there’s a lot to be said for finding the nice places close to home to enjoy nature and get some exercise without feeling like you need to organize for an expedition!