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green Paint Branch Trail


4.1 mile 6.6 kilometer point to point
100% Runnable


Ascent: 19' 6 m
Descent: -96' -29 m
High: 126' 38 m
Low: 46' 14 m


Avg Grade: 1% (0°)
Max Grade: 9% (5°)


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Trail shared by Nicole Crisp

An enjoyable run along the Paint Branch Trail.

Nicole Crisp

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Spring · Wildflowers · Wildlife

The trail is open 24/7 although care should be taken at night as there are no lights or lampposts along the trail.


This trail is a great way to get away from the business of College Park and escape into the woods. For the most part, you'll be alone in nature with the cars on Route 1 and University Blvd only faint noises in the background. The trail heads along the north end next to the Mazza Grandmarc apartment complex near Route 1 and Hollywood heading south to Route 1 and Greenbelt Rd. You'll frequently see a few other travelers along your way from runners to walkers to cyclist to dog owners.

Starting from the north end, you'll pass over a wooden bridge then turn left. From here, you'll cross over the Paint Branch tributary multiple times. After this you'll have the Paint Branch golf course on your left. Once you turn left to head on a decently long stretch headed eastward, look to your left, and there will be an amazing portion of wetlands with frogs, ducks, and birds. From there, you'll head south for a bit then east again to cross under University Blvd. Coming up on your right will be a park and past this, another access point.

From here, the trail continues further south and east, heading toward College Park Estates and Greenbelt Park where you can connect to other trails in the area.

Flora & Fauna

The trail roughly follows the Paint Branch tributary of the Anacostia River meaning there are a variety of birds, ducks, and frogs to be found. Geese are a frequent site at the golf course that is part of the southern portion of the trail. Squirrels can also be seen as well as on rare occasions deer.

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Jul 25, 2018
Allie Passarello
pre-work run 2.5mi

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