- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 1, 2005

In addition to paddling on the Anacostia, fans of the river can also pedal along its banks — either along the sylvan Maryland streams that feed the river or along the broad waterway that flows through the District of Columbia on its way to join the Potomac.

On a recent Saturday, a couple of dozen adults and two children — one in a fancy trailer behind her father’s bike and one literally setting the pace on her two-wheeler — met at the Maine Avenue Fish Market for a 12-mile loop along both sides of the Anacostia River on the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail.

Let’s call that the “Interim Anacostia Riverwalk Trail.” It’s a work in progress.

“This interim route is the first step in creating a trail along the entire length of the Anacostia River,” said Jim Sebastian, biking coordinator for the District’s Department of Transportation, who led the tour. Eventually, he explained, the rough parts of the trail will be smoothed out and it will link up with the Anacostia Headwaters Bicycle Trail network, which starts in Bladensburg.

Following the diamond-shaped, blue-and-green Anacostia Riverwalk Trail signs is easy. Some of the trail’s high points are these:

• The Maine Avenue waterfront and the Titanic Memorial, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney’s art-moderne sculpture honoring the Titanic passengers who gave up their places in the lifeboats. This is a good spot to view Hains Point, where the Anacostia joins the Potomac.

• Fort McNair, the headquarters of the U.S. Army Military District of Washington.

• The site of the home of Lewis Jefferson, a developer, shipbuilder and amusement park operator who was one of Washington’s first black millionaires. On the site now is a Pepco plant.

• The Henson Center, a nature center and the headquarters of DC Sail, which teaches neighborhood youngsters to sail and also rents sailboats. The center’s pier provides a sweeping view of the river’s mouth, the Frederick Douglass Bridge and the ospreys that nest under the bridge.

• The Washington Navy Yard, with its ceremonial gate designed by Capitol architect Benjamin Latrobe in 1805. The gate, now topped by a Victorian addition, is all that remains of the original Yard, which was burned by its commandant to keep it out of the hands of the invading British during the War of 1812.

There’s much more to see as the trail winds its way up past Congressional Cemetery and Kingman and Heritage islands, crosses the Anacostia on the Benning Road Bridge and eventually leads back to the District, and through city streets to the waterfront and the Maine Avenue Fish Market.

Hikers and cyclists can find a complete map of the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail at the Web site of the D.C. Department of Transportation, at www.ddot.dc.gov/ddot/frames.asp?doc=/ddot/lib/ddot/infor mation/bicycle/anacostia_map.pdf.

— Anne H. Oman

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide