"A cluster of cabins" by U.S. National Park Service , public domain
Prince William Forest
Park - Virginia
Prince William Forest Park was established as Chopawamsic Recreational Demonstration Area in 1936 and is located in southeastern Prince William County, Virginia, adjacent to the Marine Corps Base Quantico. The park is the largest protected natural area in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region.. Today, the park is a window into the past and serves as an example of what much of the East Coast once looked like centuries ago.
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Prince William Forest - Visitor Map
Official visitor map of Prince William Forest Park in Virginia. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Park Units
Map of the U.S. National Park System. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Park Units and Regions
Map of the U.S. National Park System with Unified Regions. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Heritage Areas
Map of the U.S. National Heritage Areas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
https://www.nps.gov/prwi/index.htm https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_William_Forest_Park Prince William Forest Park was established as Chopawamsic Recreational Demonstration Area in 1936 and is located in southeastern Prince William County, Virginia, adjacent to the Marine Corps Base Quantico. The park is the largest protected natural area in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region.. Today, the park is a window into the past and serves as an example of what much of the East Coast once looked like centuries ago. Prince William Forest Park is an oasis, a respite of quiet and calm. In 1936, Chopawamsic Recreation Area opened its gates to house children's 'relief' camps during the Great Depression. Renamed Prince William Forest Park in 1948, these fragrant woods and trickling streams have welcomed generations of campers, hikers, bikers and nature lovers. Discover Northern Virginia's best kept secret! From Washington, D.C. and points north: Take I-95 south to exit 150-B (VA Route 619/Joplin Road). The park entrance is the second right. From Fredericksburg and points south: Take I-95 north to exit 150 (VA Route 619/Joplin Road). Turn left at the bottom of the exit ramp and continue on VA Route 619 West approximately 1/4 mile to the park entrance. Prince William Forest Park Visitor Center The visitor center is half a mile from the park entrance. The visitor center has seasonal hours: mid March - beginning of November, open every day from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm and beginning of November - mid March, 8:00 am - 4:00 pm with closures on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (dates follow daylight savings time). The visitor center is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day. From Washington, D.C. and points north: Take I-95 south to exit 150-B (VA Route 619/Joplin Road). Park entrance is the second right. From Fredericksburg and points south:Take I-95 north to exit 150 (VA Route 619/Joplin Road). Turn left at the bottom of the exit ramp. Continue on VA Route 619 West approximately 1/4 mile to the park entrance. From Manassas, VA and points west: Take Route 234 east to I-95 south. Travel one exit to exit 150-B (VA Route 619/Joplin Road). Park entrance is the second right. Cabin Camp 1 (By Reservation Only) Cabin Camp 1 was the first camp in the park completed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the 1930's. It sleeps 205 visitors. Its dining hall and craft lodges are some of the best examples of rustic architecture in the park. Stone foundations, fireplaces and whole log supports showcase the beautiful native materials used by the CCC. The sleeping cabins in this camp host 2 to 10 campers per unit and are newer construction (circa 1980s). Some cabins in the D unit are semi wheelchair accessible. Price Per Night 670.00 This is the price to rent out the entire Cabin Camp 1: its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Cabin Camp 1 Main Craft Lodge A stone and wood cabin sits among the woods Cabin Camp 1 Main Craft Lodge Cabin Camp 1 Infirmary A dark brown, rustic cabin sits among the woods Cabin Camp 1 Infirmary Cabin Camp 1 - D Loop A concrete sidewalk leads the way to five brown, wooden sleeper cabins Cabin Camp 1 - D Loop Cabin Camp 1 Council Ring Wooden benches surround a large fire pit in a circle Cabin Camp 1 Council Ring Cabin Camp 1 Dining Hall A dark brown wood building sits among the woods Cabin Camp 1 Dining Hall Cabin Camp 1 Map There are four units, or cabin loops - A through D. North of them is a firepit and a ballfield Cabin Camp 1 Map Cabin Camp 2 (By Reservation Only) Cabin Camp 2 first hosted campers in 1937. The camp sleeps 149 visitors and consists of approximately 132 acres. This camp mainly contains 4 person cabins, with a few 2 and 6 person cabins mixed in here and there. The units are clustered in a circular arrangement and contain 8 cabins, a bath house, and a lodge. Each unit is in a grassy clearing that is surrounded by dense forest. The large ballfield and lake access in Camp 2 are among the best in the park. Cabin Camp 2 was listed on the National Register o Price Per Night 630.00 This is the price to rent out the entire Cabin Camp 2: its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Cabin Camp 2 Sleeping Cabins A wooden, dark brown sleeping cabin sits in a field. Behind it are other cabins and trees. Cabin Camp 2 Sleeping Cabins Cabin Camp 2 Craft Lodge at B Loop A dark brown wooden cabin with a front porch and stone chimney is among green trees Cabin Camp 2 Craft Lodge at B Loop Cabin Camp 2 Ballfield A fence separates a ballfield from several wooden benches among a grassy field Cabin Camp 2 Ballfield Cabin Camp 2 Dining Hall A brown wooden building with a front porch sits among trees. A wayside is on the lawn in front of it Cabin Camp 2 Dining Hall Cabin Camp 2 Map A map shows the cabin camp split in four units, A through D, and a ball field Cabin Camp 2 Map Cabin Camp 3 (By Reservation Only) Individual cabin rentals and a small group site are available in Cabin Camp 3. This forested camp was constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. It is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Cabin Camp 3, C Unit is made for smaller groups. C Unit has a linear layout and sleeps 76 visitors. C Unit's 10-person cabins make it one of the best in the park for group outings. The beautiful brick fireplaces in the dining hall and craft lodges give this camp a unique character. Group Camp Per Night 475.00 This is the price to rent out the group part of Cabin Camp 3, including its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Four-Person Cabin Per Night 50.00 Individual cabin in Cabin Camp 3 that sleeps 4 people. Each cabin includes individual beds and mattresses, a picnic table and a cooking grill. Cabins have electric lights and ceiling fans, but do not have electrical outlets. Cabins are not equipped with kitchens or individual bathrooms. Please note that pets are not allowed in any cabin camp. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Six-Person Cabin Per Night 60.00 Individual cabin in Cabin Camp 3 that sleeps 6 people. Each cabin includes individual beds and mattresses, a picnic table and a cooking grill. Cabins have electric lights and ceiling fans, but do not have electrical outlets. Cabins are not equipped with kitchens or individual bathrooms. Please note that pets are not allowed in any cabin camp. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Ten-Person Cabin Per Night 70.00 Individual cabin in Cabin Camp 3 that sleeps 10 people. Each cabin includes individual beds and mattresses, a picnic table and a cooking grill. Cabins have electric lights and ceiling fans, but do not have electrical outlets. Cabins are not equipped with kitchens or individual bathrooms. Please note that pets are not allowed in any cabin camp. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Cabin Camp 3 Individual Craft Lodge A dark brown wooden building with a brick chimney stands among woods Cabin Camp 3 Individual Craft Lodge Cabin Camp 3 Individual Sleeper Cabins Several wooden sleeper cabins are dispersed in the woods with a gravel road between them Cabin Camp 3 Individual Sleeper Cabins Cabin Camp 3 Group Dining Hall A large brown wooden building is surrounded by tree. A picnic table sits on the lawn in front of it Cabin Camp 3 Group Dining Hall Cabin Camp 3 Group Sleeper Cabins Large brown wooden cabins are dispersed through the woods. A gravel road is between them Cabin Camp 3 Group Sleeper Cabins Cabin Camp Group Craft Lodge A dark brown wooden building with a small front porch is among green trees Cabin Camp Group Craft Lodge Cabin Camp 3 Group Site Map The C unit is north of the individual cabin rentals. Cabins are arranged in a line Cabin Camp 3 Group Site Map Cabin Camp 3 Individual Map Individual cabins are clustered in two units in the south side of camp. A playground is nearby. Cabin Camp 3 individual map Cabin Camp 4 (By Reservation Only) The 199 visitors who can sleep in this Cabin Camp 4 can enjoy the new roofs and windows that help ensure that these historic structures last for future generations. Cabin Camp 4 has mostly 10-person sleeping cabins. While this camp is the only one in the park without a fireplace in its dining hall, the theater building/gymnasium is the only one in the park. Price Per Night 650.00 This is the price to rent out all of Cabin Camp 4, including its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Cabin Camp 5 Staff Quarters A brown wooden building with a brick fireplace sits among trees Cabin Camp 5 Staff Quarters Cabin Camp 4 Dining Hall A wooden building with lots of windows sits among trees Cabin Camp 4 Dining Hall Cabin Camp 4 Theater and Gym A reddish brown wood building with its front door open sits among trees Cabin Camp 4 Theater and Gym Cabin Camp 4 Restrooms A dark brown wooden building with a green roof sits among trees Cabin Camp 4 Restrooms Cabin Camp 4 Sleeper Cabin A dark brown, rectangular wooden cabin sits among green trees with a grassy front lawn Cabin Camp 4 Sleeper Cabin Cabin Camp 4 Craft Lodge Interior A room with a wood floor and exposed wood rafters has a brick fireplace and benches around the edges Cabin Camp 4 Craft Lodge Interior Cabin Camp 4 Map Cabins are split into five units, A through E, with a play field in the center of them Cabin Camp 4 Map Cabin Camp 5 (By Reservation Only) Cabin Camp 5 was the last camp to be completed by the CCC and WPA. The camp offers the largest capacity (210 in summer, 104 in winter) due to the large dorm buildings and restrooms. This is also the only camp with heat, so this camp may be rented year-round. This is also the only camp to have an outdoor picnic pavilion located inside the camp. Cabin Camp 5 is set up in two units with cabins that sleeps 2 to 4 people and larger dorm buildings that sleep 24. Price Per Night (Summer) 790.00 This is the price to rent out the entire Cabin Camp 5; its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary, during the summer season. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Price Per Night (Winter) 670.00 This is the price to rent out the entire Cabin Camp 5; its cabins, dining hall & kitchen, craft lodges, fire pit, and infirmary, during the winter season. This cost does not include entrance fees, which are $20 per vehicle or covered by a park pass. Cabin Camp 5 Infirmary A dark brown wooden building with a ramp stands among trees with a grassy lawn Cabin Camp 5 Infirmary Cabin Camp 5 Sleeper Cabins Dark brown wooden cabins with orange roofs stand in a row. Tall green trees are behind them. Cabin Camp 5 Sleeper Cabins Cabin Camp 5 Dining Hall A dark brown building with an orange roof stands among trees and a grassy lawn. Cabin Camp 5 Dining Hall Cabin Camp 5 Outdoor Pavilion A wooden pavilion shelters several wooden picnic tables. Green trees surround the pavilion Cabin Camp 5 Outdoor Pavilion Cabin Camp 5 Map Cabins are split in two units - A and B. Between them is a fire ring and two ballfields. Cabin Camp 5 Map Chopawamsic Backcountry Area Chopawamsic Backcountry Area (tents only) is an 8-site, hike-in/hike-out, backcountry campground in a remote area of the park. No pets and no campfires are allowed in this area. Four campers per site only. Campers must pitch tents within 20 feet of the site marker. Reservations can be made on recreation.gov or by calling 877-444-6777. Campers must pay the park entrance fee or possess a valid park pass. Vehicles must be parked in the gravel parking lot. Chopawamsic Backcountry Permit 0.00 A permit is required to gain admittance and can be obtained by visiting recreation.gov/camping/campgrounds/259170 or calling 877-444-6777. While the backcountry permit is free of charge, a flat fee of $8 is charged for the reservation system if using the website and $9 if using the phone reservation system. Entrance to Chopawamsic a park sign marks the entrance to the backcountry area This is the entrance to Chopawamsic Backcountry Area Campsite #2 Marker a wooden post with the number 2 marks the entrance to a campsite A trailside marker notes the entrance to campsite #2 Chopawamsic Creek in the backcountry area A tree overhangs the Chopawamsic Creek in the backcountry area The Chopawamsic Creek lies off-trail in the backcountry area. Campsite #3 Wooden post marked with number 3 in a flat dirt area in the middle of a green forest Campsite 3 camping area Oak Ridge Campground Oak Ridge Campground is a 100-site campground with bathrooms, grills and picnic tables, and drive-up campsites. Leashed pets are welcome. Both tents and RVs are welcome, though there are no hook-ups for RVs and maximum RV length is 32". Reservations are required for all campsites. Make a reservation on recreation.gov or by calling 877-444-6777. The campground is closed for the winter on December 1 and re-opens on March 3. Campsite Fee 26.00 Fee per campsite. Each site has a picnic table, a fire pit, a lantern hook, and space to park at least one automobile. Senior/Access Interagency Pass Fee 13.00 Fee per campsite. Each site has a picnic table, a fire pit, a lantern hook, and space to park at least one automobile. Oak Ridge Campground Map Graphic map of Oak Ridge Camp Ground. Map of Oak Ridge Campground Campsite in C Loop Post marking campsite C26 with a picnic table in the background in a fall forest Oak Ridge in Fall Oak Ridge Campsite Large red and silver tent and blue pop-up pavilion over a picnic table in a campsite in the forest Campers in Oak Ridge Prince William Forest RV Campground The Prince William Forest Park RV Campground is a concessionaire-operated campground with full hook-ups. The campground boasts pull through sites, a pool and laundry facility. It is Virginia's closest RV camping to Washington, D.C. There are several tents-only sites. Open year-round. It is currently closed due to infrastructure repair work and will hopefully re-open in June 2023. Full Hookup, 50 amp 65.00 Daily fee Full Hookup, 30 amp 55.00 Daily fee Electric and Water, 30 amp 42.00 Electric & Water rates are for up to 4 people. For additional people 6 years and up, add $5.00. Dump Station (non-guest) 20.00 Non-guest fee. Site Guarantee 10.00 Site Guarantee RV Campground A park sign that reads 'Prince William Forest RV Campground' with NPS arrowhead. The Prince William Forest RV campground offers camping areas and amenities for RV campers. Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground (tents only) is designed for groups of people. Families and individuals are encouraged to use Oak Ridge Campground instead. Turkey Run is a 9-site campground with restrooms (no showers), grated fire pits, and picnic tables. Three sites hold a maximum of 40 people. Six sites hold a maximum of 25 people. Parking is available. Alcohol is prohibited at Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground. You can reserve your spot at on www.recreation.gov or call 877-444-6777. $65 Fee for 25-person Campsite 65.00 Each campground fee is per site, per night. The Interagency Senior/Access Pass does NOT discount camping fees at Turkey Run Group Campground. The 25-person capacity campsites are A, B, D, G, H, and I. Campers must also purchase an entrance fee per vehicle unless they already possess a valid park pass. $80 Fee for 40-person campsite 80.00 Each campground fee is per site, per night. The Interagency Senior/Access Pass does NOT discount camping fees at Turkey Run Group Campground. Campers must also purchase an entrance fee per vehicle unless they already possess a valid park pass. These sites hold a maximum of 40 people and include C, E, and F. No pets, no alcohol, no RVs allowed. No electric is available. Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground Brown picnic tables and a fire ring are surrounded by green trees Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground Site F Wooden Post reading F with scatted picnic tables and fire ring on bare ground under green trees Site F in Turkey Run Ridge Group Campground Campers at Turkey Run in the Winter Yellow tents camping in a winter forest with many leaves coving the ground Campers at Turkey Run Carter Pond Carter Pond on a sunny day in summer Carter Pond is a great place to fish. Farms to Forest Trail Farms to Forest Trail surrounded by ferns The Farms to Forest Trail is a favorite among visitors. Mountain Laurel Mountain Laurel blooming near Parking Lot I. Mountain Laurel can be spotted throughout the park. Fall Foliage A tree with orange leaves against the blue sky Fall is a beautiful time of year in the park. Near Parking Lot H Fall colors come alive near Parking Lot H Many people visit the park to see the brilliant fall colors Tree on South Valley Trail Tuliptrees grow tall with blue sky above them Tuliptrees are a mid-secession tree in the forest. Historic Park Sign for Chopawamsic RDA An original 1930's sign for Chopawamsic National Recreational Demonstration Area A sign on Joplin Road marks the park entrance in the mid-1930s. Pawpaw: Small Tree, Big Impact Pawpaw are small trees that don't grow past 100 feet. Yet they have a big influence-- they're the most commonly observed sapling in our National Capital Region forests. Pawpaw trees are virtually immune to deer browse and also produce the largest edible fruit native to North America! A hand holds a lumpy green pawpaw fruit Lichens and Air Quality Lichens are durable enough to grow on tree bark and bare rock, yet are sensitive to pollution and air quality. One species in particular was used to track levels of air-borne lead over a 100 year period! Pale green lichen growing on rock. Instructing for Dangerous Missions Creating the training process was a big challenge. To prepare spies, saboteurs, guerrilla leaders, radio operators, psychological warfare specialists and commando teams for their clandestine missions, the Office of Strategic Services had to obtain instructors, prepare a curriculum, develop courses, and devise practical exercises. Daily Life in Camp Park and Town During the recruiting process, the Office of Strategic Services was looking for a combination of intelligence, imagination, courage and, if necessary, ruthlessness. Most of the young recruits, that volunteered for possible hazardous duty, craved the excitement and challenge of a special overseas assignment. NPS Structural Fire Program Highlights 2014 Intern Accomplishments A Wartime Organization for Unconventional Warfare With the onset of World War II, the OSS's secret operations—espionage, counter-intelligence, disinformation, and guerrilla leadership—expanded. Forest Regeneration 2018 In 2018, tree seedlings and small saplings are in short supply in the parks of the National Capital Region. Without these trees of tomorrow, what will our forests look like? A forest plot in Rock Creek Park showing some vegetation recovery. Burning for learning - New wildland firefighters train in Prince William Forest Park New trainees learn about wildland fire at Prince William Forest Park Three wildland fire trainees in front of a fire engine Catoctin and Prince William Parks Join the War Effort The decision to establish its first U.S. training camps at Catoctin Mountain Park, Maryland, and Prince William Forest Park, Virginia, had been based on their’ rural, isolated location yet comparative proximity to the nation’s capital. Sustainability in Action: Reducing Prince William Forest Park's Carbon Footprint NPS Geodiversity Atlas—Prince William Forest Park, Virginia Each park-specific page in the NPS Geodiversity Atlas provides basic information on the significant geologic features and processes occurring in the park. Links to products from Baseline Geologic and Soil Resources Inventories provide access to maps and reports. [Site Under Development] historic cabin camp site Field School at Prince William Forest Park: Documenting Cabin Camps Starting in summer of 2018, University of Mary Washington and NPS partnered for a field school at Prince William Forest Park. Students gained hands-on experience while helping to document two cultural landscapes, Cabin Camp 4 and Cabin Camp 2. The cabin camps were developed in the 1930s as part of the Recreational Demonstration Area program. This documentation will be used to complete CLI reports for the two camps, and the methods helped shape subsequent field schools. Two field school participants look at a drawing board as they document a forested landscape. American Eels in the Potomac Watershed American eels are found everywhere along the Atlantic Coast, but many aspects of these fish remain poorly understood. They are perhaps one of the most mysterious fish in the Potomac watershed. Hands hold a 2 to 3 foot long eel over a red container. National Capital Region Energy Savings Performance Contract The National Park Service is investing $29 million in 81 individual energy efficiency and water conservation projects at national parks throughout the greater Washington region. Cherry Blossoms at the National Mall OSS in Action The Mediterranean and European Theaters In war it is the results that count, and the saboteurs and guerrilla leaders in Special Operations and the Operational Groups, the spies in Secret Intelligence, and the radio operators in Communications did produce some impressive results. Field Notes: Archeology at Prince William Forest Park Why do we need archeologists in the National Park Service? Learn what a day's work looks like for archeologists helping to preserve ancient history at Prince William Forest Park in Triangle, VA. A hand holding a stone tool Forest Regeneration 2017 Tree seedlings and small saplings are in short supply in the parks of the National Capital Region. Without these trees of tomorrow, what will our forests look like? A forest plot showing tree seedling and low-growing plant recovery. Go green for the National Park Service’s birthday! We're adding energy- and water-saving improvements to save money! How can you do the same in your home? National Mall and Memorial Parks Yearly Savings 50.9 M gallons of water, $1 M, 2.7M kwh. Summer in the Parks (1968-1976) What began as a summer transportation program to send DC urban youth to Catoctin and Prince William Forest Parks in 1966 grew to a city-wide summer-long festival attracting residents to parks in every quadrant of the city. After the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., the program took on an additional role to help save a city from destroying itself. A group of boys smiles for the camera Transforming Prince William Forest Park into Military Camps In 1942, the hilly, forested lands of Prince William Forest Park near Quantico, Virginia, became the site of training camps for the OSS Special Operations and the Communications Branches. Postwar Period: End of the OSS and Return to the Park Service The OSS may have won its battles in the field, but it lost its final campaign—in Washington. It was better prepared to fight armed enemies overseas than bureaucratic enemies in the nation’s capital. Summary and Conclusion The OSS training camps closed in 1945. The valuable contributions to the Allied victory made by those facilities and by Donovan’s organization itself are an important part of the history of World War II. OSS in Action The Pacific and the Far East Although the most publicized achievements of the OSS occurred in Europe and North Africa, Donovan’s organization also contributed to the war against Japan in the Far East. "Wild Bill" Donovan and the Origins of the OSS When World War II broke out in Europe in 1939, U.S. intelligence operations were splintered among nearly a dozen federal agencies. Stream Restoration Dreams: Stage Zero Learn “stage zero” stream restoration basics and how they could be applied in Mid-Atlantic streams. Water spreads across the ground around standing and fallen trees Ash Tree Update 2017 The state of ash trees in 2017 in the National Capital Region after more than 10 years of harm from the invasive emerald ash borer. A white ash leaf Forest Regeneration 2019 In 2019 tree seedlings and small saplings are in short supply in National Capital Area parks. Without these trees of tomorrow, what will our forests look like? A brown bird with a white breast and dark spots on its chest stands on the leaf-littered ground. Eastern Hemlocks in the National Capital Region Many evergreen, Eastern hemlock trees, typically found growing alongside forest streams, have succumbed to two insect pests. In the National Capital Region, we looked for surviving trees, and what other tree species are poised to replace hemlocks. An evergreen branch with white fuzzy nubs along the stems. Oak Decline Learn more about oak decline where a host of stressors interact to weaken trees over time, leading to what becomes "death by a thousand cuts." Looking up into the canopy of a mature oak showing symptoms of oak decline. Spring Amphibian Timeline Learn how the progression of amphibian appearances unfurls every spring. A gray tree frog clings to a small tree branch. Amphibian Diversity & Habitat Connectivity Habitat fragmentation is a major threat to amphibian communities, especially in National Capital Region parks at risk due to the region's growing urbanization. A small frog crouches on a lichen-covered rock. Office of Strategic Services The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was an intelligence gathering service from 1942-1945. Its espionage and sabotage operations were pioneered by an eclectic team that combined some of America's brightest minds with burglars and con men. Their work in World War II contributed to Allied victory. When the OSS was disbanded after the war in 1945, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) rose from its ashes. OSS spear logo Amphibian Disease Risk in the National Capital Area Looking for disease, including ranaviruses and chytrid fungi, is an important part of amphibian monitoring done by the National Capital Region Inventory & Monitoring Network. Learn more about the risks posed by these diseases and the biosecurity protocols field crews use to reduce the risk of accidental spread. Red-spotted newt on brown forest floor leaves. Black spots and eyes contrast with vivid orange skin. Forest Soils Highlights from a 2007-2017 study of soils in National Capital Region Network I&M-monitored parks. Includes discussion of parent materials, heavy metal soil pollutants like lead, and how past land use effects O horizons. Collage of 6 color photos of soil profiles showing colors from orange-y reds to browns and grays. American Chestnuts in the Capital Region 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 parks of the National Capital Region Green American chestnut tree leaves on a slender branch. Freshwater Sponges Freshwater sponges are found in lakes and streams growing on firm substrates like rocks and branches. They feed by filtering small particles from the water. Though little is known about these sponges in the Mid-Atlantic, they are usually a sign of good water quality. A freshwater sponges attached to a streambed rock. Stiltgrass and Tree Seedling Recovery Recent analysis at Maryland's Catoctin Mountain Park shows Japanese stiltgrass does not limit the growth of tree seedlings in a forest recovering from deer overpopulation. Invasive Japanese stiltgrass blankets the sides of a shady forest road. Cabin Camp 1 Cultural Landscape Cabin Camp 1(CC1) is an approximately 13 acre planned organized camp site near the northwest border of Prince William Forest Park (PRWI) which is located nearly 35 miles south of Washington, D.C. in Prince William County near Triangle, Virginia. A rustic cabin of stone and wood paneling at Cabin Camp 1 Spotted Lanternfly 101 What you need to know about spotted lanternfly: a new, invasive, insect pest approaching the National Parks of the Mid-Atlantic. A spotted lanternfly with wings spread showing namesake spots Series: OSS Training in the National Parks and Service Abroad in World War II Before there was the CIA, there was the OSS. The places where they trained for their dangerous mission are now national parks. William Donovan Series: Geologic Time Periods in the Paleozoic Era During the Paleozoic Era (541 to 252 million years ago), fish diversified and marine organisms were very abundant. In North America, the Paleozoic is characterized by multiple advances and retreats of shallow seas and repeated continental collisions that formed the Appalachian Mountains. Common Paleozoic fossils include trilobites and cephalopods such as squid, as well as insects and ferns. The greatest mass extinction in Earth's history ended this era. fossil corals in a rock matrix Series: National Park Service Geodiversity Atlas The servicewide Geodiversity Atlas provides information on <a href="https://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/geoheritage-conservation.htm">geoheritage</a> and <a href="https://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/geodiversity.htm">geodiversity</a> resources and values all across the National Park System to support science-based management and education. The <a href="https://www.nps.gov/orgs/1088/index.htm">NPS Geologic Resources Division</a> and many parks work with National and International <a href="https://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/park-geology.htm">geoconservation</a> communities to ensure that NPS abiotic resources are managed using the highest standards and best practices available. park scene mountains Ordovician Period—485.4 to 443.8 MYA Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains national parks, along with the Blue Ridge Parkway that connects them, pass through rocks from the core of the Appalachian Mountains. The mountains began forming during the Ordovician and eventually attained elevations similar to those of the Himalayas. rock with fossil brachiopod shells Paleozoic Era During the Paleozoic Era (541 to 252 million years ago), fish diversified and marine organisms were very abundant. In North America, the Paleozoic is characterized by multiple advances and retreats of shallow seas and repeated continental collisions that formed the Appalachian Mountains. Common Paleozoic fossils include trilobites and cephalopods such as squid, as well as insects and ferns. The greatest mass extinction in Earth's history ended this era. fossil corals in a rock matrix Spotted Lanternfly in Perspective While spotted lanternfly and emerald ash borer are both invasive insect pests, introduced from Asia, that feed on trees (primarily), they have few other similarities. Learn how they differ in host preferences, feeding mode, and life cycle. A spotted lanternfly with black wingspots on a tree branch Brood X Periodical Cicadas FAQ Learn about the Brood X periodical cicadas that emerged in 2021 throughout the Mid-Atlantic U.S. A perched periodical cicada with red eyes and orange wings Forest Regeneration 2020 What is the future of our forests? A look at forest regeneration capacity in National Capital Area national parks based on 2020 monitoring data. hand holding a leaflet on a white ash seedling Park Recreation and Climate Change Recreation in the National Parks will be negatively affected by climate change. Here's how parks in the National Capital Area are adapting. Three children sit next to a lake and fish Prescribed fire in the national capital area Learn how the National Park Service uses prescribed fire in the National Capital Area. Beech Trees in the National Capital Area American beech (Fagus grandifolia), the most common tree species in National Capital Area parks, is currently facing the emerging threat of Beech Leaf Disease (BLD). A forest with healthy green leafed beech trees Overview of the Urban Forests The eight urban forests measured in the Urban Ecology i-Tree analyses are diverse. The following articles explore just a few of the common ecological benefits the urban trees in these parks provide to the parks and the surrounding areas. Overview of the Urban Forests icon of tree silhouettes. Icon put over photo of Prince William Forest Other Benefits of Urban Forests Other benefits of urban forests include: Trees and Building Energy Use and Oxygen Production. Trees affect energy consumption by shading buildings, providing evaporative cooling, and blocking winter winds. Oxygen production is one of the most commonly cited benefits of urban trees. Other Tree Benefits icon of house with a tree besides it. Icon put over photo of cherry blossoms Structural Values of Urban Forests A tree’s structural value can be thought of as the cost of having to replace a tree with a similar tree. It can be calculated with factors like the tree trunk area and the tree’s health condition. Various insects and diseases can infest urban forests, potentially killing trees and reducing the health, structural value and sustainability of the urban forest. Structural Values of Trees icon of tree on field. Icon put over photo of snow covered trees. Avoided Runoff and Urban Forests Surface runoff, particularly from storms, can be a cause for concern in many urban areas because the large amounts of paved surfaces will increase the amount of water that cannot soak into the ground. These large volumes of stormwater runoff can carry surface impurities into streams, wetlands, rivers, lakes, and oceans, contributing pollution, garbage, and excessive nutrients into aquatic ecosystems. Urban forests, however, are beneficial in reducing surface runoff. Avoided Runoff icon of rain over a tree branch. Icon put over raindrops on red fall leaves Carbon Storage by Urban Forests Climate change is an issue of global concern. Urban trees can help mitigate climate change by storing carbon in tree tissue and sequestering atmospheric carbon from the key greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2). Carbon Storage & Sequestration icon of CO2 going into a tree. Icon put over photo tree trunk. Air Pollution Removal by Urban Forests Poor air quality is a common problem in many urban areas. It can lead to decreased human health, damage to landscape materials and ecosystem processes, and spoiled scenic views due to reduced visibility. The National Park Service monitors and assesses air quality in park units. The trees in NPS’s urban forests contribute to improved air quality. Air Pollution Removal Icon of green lungs. Icon put over photo of tree canopy gap. Incredible Untold Stories of Everyday Life In the Reconstruction period following the Civil War, newly freed African Americans faced monumental challenges to establish their own households, farm their own lands, establish community institutions and churches, and to pursue equal justice under the law in a period of racist violence. A new NPS report presents the story of the extraordinary accomplishments of rural African Americans in Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. Portrait of well dressed Black woman in round spectacles, short natural hair, and lacy white collar Audrey Calhoun The first Black woman in the United States to graduate with a degree in forestry, Audrey Calhoun committed to a career in national parks. Audrey Calhoun poses in her Park Service uniform. The Residents of the Poor House The Prince William County Poor House was created in 1794 after the disestablishment of the Anglican church in the 1780s. On June 4, 1793, construction began on “a framed house Sixteen Feet Square with a Stone or Brick Chimney weather Boarded & Covered with Shingles and as many Logged Cabins as they may Judge Sufficient for the present.” Archeology provides another lens through which to view the Poor House’s brutal legacy. Harmonica reed Forest Regeneration 2021 The latest look at forest regeneration capacity in National Capital Area national parks based on monitoring data from 2021. Green forest showing healthy understory of oak seedlings. Resilient Forests Initiative - Managing Deer Impacts A healthy forest needs to have enough tree seedlings and saplings to regenerate the forest canopy after a disturbance. Analysis of NPS I&M and other long-term datasets makes it clear that many eastern national parks lack adequate tree regeneration due to decades of over browsing by white-tailed deer. Deer impacts I&M Networks Support Resilient Forest Management NPS Inventory and Monitoring Networks have been tracking forest health in eastern national parks since 2006. This monitoring information can guide resilient forest management and support parks in adapting to changing conditions through the actions described below. Forest health monitoring Managing Resilient Forests. A Regional Initiative Forests cover tens of thousands of acres in eastern national parks and these critical resources face a range of interacting stressors: over-abundant white-tailed deer populations, invasive plant dominance, novel pests and pathogens, among other threats. The Resilient Forests Initiative will help parks address these issue collectively. Forest health monitoring Autumn Amphibians Frog antifreeze and red efts? Learn more about fall amphibian life in the National Capital Area, including marbled salamanders, spring peepers, and red-spotted newts! A red-orange juvenile red-spotted newt climbs a rock Series: Managing Resilient Forests Initiative for Eastern National Parks Forests in the northeastern U.S. are in peril. Over-abundant deer, invasive plants, and insect pests are impacting park forests, threatening to degrade the scenic vistas and forested landscapes that parks are renowned for. With regional collaboration, parks can manage these impacts and help forests be resilient. This article series explores tools available to park managers to achieve their goals. Healthy forests have many native seedlings and saplings. Resilient Forests Initiative - Managing Invasive Plants & Pests Park forests are threatened by invasive plants and pests. Strategically tackling invasive plants to protect park’s highest priority natural resources and planning around forest pests and pathogens are important actions in managing resilient forests. Forest Regeneration Ash Tree Update 2021 Emerald ash borer (EAB) has killed most of the 300,000 ash trees in National Capital Region parks since 2014. Fewer than 80,000 living ash trees remain. Some ash-dominated swamps transformed into shrublands as ash root systems re-sprouted after EAB attack. In dry habitats, EAB proved more quickly fatal. A sunny swamp with dead tree trunks emerging from dense shrubs Series: Amphibian Monitoring in the National Capital Region Amphibians are a crucial part of both aquatic and land ecosystems and National Capital Region parks are home to at least 20 different amphibian species. Learn how amphibian populations are changing based on fifteen years of NPS monitoring. Northern red salamander (Pseudotriton ruber) on a patch of moss Amphibian Monitoring Update 2021 Learn how amphibians in the National Capital Region are faring based on fifteen years of NPS monitoring. Explore population changes, threats and stressors, and data-informed tools for protecting amphibian populations in our parks. Eye level view of a red salamander creeping along bright green moss Prince William Amphibian Monitoring 2021 Learn how amphibian populations are doing at Prince William! American toad (Bufo americanus) Vines on Trees at Forest Edges Learn how climbing vines affect tree growth and mortality in National Capital Region park forests. This material was originally presented in a 2016 resource brief. Vines climb on trees at the forest edge at Rock Creek's Barnard Hill Park. Re-Growing Southeastern Grasslands Native grasslands once covered vast swaths of the southeastern U.S. Learn how national parks in DC, Maryland, and Virginia are working on conserving, rehabilitating, and restoring these grassland communities. A sunny grassland with rolling hills in the distance What We’re Learning and Why it Matters: Long-Term Monitoring in the National Capital Region Knowing which natural resources are found in the national parks, and whether they're stable or changing, helps decisionmakers make sound choices. The National Capital Region Network is building that knowledge. After over fifteen years of monitoring, we've learned a lot about park ecosystems, how they're changing, and what they may look like in the days to come. Find out what we’ve learned and how it’s being used to help managers plan for the future. Field crew measures the diameter of a tree. Equality in the National Capital Area During the Revolution and War of 1812 The nation's pledge to liberty, justice and the pursuit of happiness is challenged by its legacy of enslavement and the empty promises offered to African Americans during their service in both the Revolutionary War and War of 1812. This timeline gives you a listing of events in the national capital area. A burning navy yard during the burning of Washington, War of 1812 Abolitionism and Freedom in the National Capital Area This timeline follows events revolving around civil rights in the National Capital Area and related people, places, parks and more. An Illustration of Arlington House Tree Rings and the Tales They Tell Ecologists with the National Capital Region use tree cores from 36 different species to learn about the age of trees in park forests. Tree core samples taken from forest plots, laid side-by-side. Series: Geologic Time—Major Divisions and NPS Fossils The National Park System contains a magnificent record of geologic time because rocks from each period of the geologic time scale are preserved in park landscapes. The geologic time scale is divided into four large periods of time—the Cenozoic Era, Mesozoic Era, Paleozoic Era, and The Precambrian. photo of desert landscape with a petrified wood log on the surface Forest Regeneration 2022 Tree seedlings and small saplings are still in short supply in National Capital Region national parks. A look at forest regeneration capacity based on monitoring data from 2022. Sunlight filtering through a green forest with green seedlings covering most of the forest floor. A Forest Monitoring Cycle Like No Other What if your office was the woods? Your break room a mossy log? This is the reality for members of the Inventory & Monitoring forest vegetation crew. The team has collected data on forest health in NCR parks every year since 2006 and recently completed the fourth cycle of forest vegetation monitoring (2018-2022). Learn what staff biologists and technicians have to say about their experiences in the field these past five years. Five members of a forest crew leap for joy in a sun-soaked forest. African Americans and the Great Outdoors There is the prevailing misconception that African Americans do not participate in outdoor recreation; however, this misconception is far from reality. While racially exclusionary practices attempted to impose limits on African American participation in outdoor recreation, African Americans participated in opportunities offered by the larger society and also carved out spaces of their own. African American Girl Scouts setting up tents for a day trip at Paradise Park