At a Glance

Hours: Daylight hours year-round.

Cost: Free.

Tips: No restrooms. ◾ No bicycles. ◾ No parking area within the park; use on-street parking.

Best Seasons: Fall, winter, spring.

Breeding Bird Atlas Blocks: Washington West SW, Washington West CW

Local MOS Chapter: No MOS chapters in DC, but Montgomery Bird ClubPatuxent Bird Club are in the neighboring suburbs. The Audubon Naturalist Society and the Audubon Society of DC cover DC.

Glover-Archbold Park

4437 Reservoir Rd NW, Washington, DC, 20007
(202) 895-6000

Glover-Archbold Park contains almost 200 acres of mostly undeveloped land covered with beeches and oaks in the stream valley of Foundry Branch, a tributary of the Potomac River. Managed by the National Park Service as a sub-unit of the extensive Rock Creek Park system, Glover-Archbold Park is long and narrow, stretching over 2.5 miles from Canal Road in Georgetown north to Van Ness Street. To the east and west, the park lies between 44th Street NW and 42nd Street NW.

The park is traversed by a main trail, the Glover-Archbold Trail, that runs most of the north-south length of the park, with numerous unnamed side trails and branches. The park contains a historical Victory Garden adjacent to W Street NW. Hikers and leashed dogs are welcome in the park, but bicycles and all other vehicles are prohibited. There is no car parking area within the park; visitors must use on-street parking.

According to the National Park Planner website (not an official National Park Service website and not affiliated with the National Park Service), trailhead access with nearby on-street parking is available at the following locations, among others:

  • 44th Street South of Greenwich Parkway
  • Corner of 44th Street and Reservoir Road
  • Corner of 44th Street and Dexter Street
  • Near the intersection of Garfield Street and Glover Drive
  • Massachusetts Avenue near the corner of Macomb Street
  • Corner of Van Ness Street and 40th Place
  • Corner of 40th Place and Upton Street
  • Near the corner of 39th Street and Newark Street
  • Corner of 42nd Street and Davis Place
  • 42nd Street near the corner of Beecher Street
  • 42nd Street near where it becomes W Street
  • End of 39th Street near the corner with W Street – this trail actually leads into Whitehaven Park, which connects to Glover-Archbold Park

Note: As of Spring 2019, parts of the Glover-Archbold Trail system, as well as the Foundry Branch Trestle Bridge, are closed because of safety hazards. See the NPS website for updates.

Birdlife:

Over 110 species have been reported on eBird from Glover-Archbold Park. The park is a well-known migrant trap and is at its best during spring and fall migration, when it is a reliable spot for Swainson’s Thrush and a variety of warblers, 25 species having been reported.

Barred Owls are resident. Year-round woodpeckers include Downy, Hairy, Red-bellied, Northern Flicker, and Pileated, with the addition of Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers in winter.

The park is notable for its breeding population of Veery and Wood Thrush, such a rare find in an urban area. Other breeding species present in spring and summer include Ruby-throated hummingbird, Eastern Wood-pewee, Acadian Flycatcher, Eastern Phoebe, Great Crested Flycatcher, White-eyed Vireo, Red-eyed Vireo, House Wren, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and Eastern Towhee.

Notable wintering songbirds include Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, Winter Wren, Ruby- and Golden-crowned Kinglets, Hermit Thrush, and Purple Finch.

Parking:

On-street. See list of trailheads with nearby parking in the site description above.

Special Features:

Glover-Archbold Park is not accessible for those who use wheelchairs or walkers. All the trails are natural surface and the terrain is hilly. ◾ The park contains a historical Victory Garden that lives on as the Glover Park Community Garden. “Victory Garden” was the name given to a national movement that inspired citizens to plant gardens during World War II, as a way to address wartime food shortages. Now, the Community Garden is entirely organic and is registered as a Climate Victory Garden, a movement to use gardens to address climate change. The Community Garden is located at the corner of 42nd Street and New Mexico Avenue in Northwest, Washington, DC. ◾ There is a plethora of restaurants and shops in the Georgetown area. ◾ There are no MOS chapters in DC, but Montgomery Bird ClubPatuxent Bird Club are in the neighboring suburbs. Two organizations, the Audubon Naturalist Society and the Audubon Society of DC, hold field trips to birding spots in the District and the Greater Metropolitan DC region.

Directions:

By car: We recommend using your favorite in-car GPS or a computer-based mapping program to get directions from your exact location to 4437 Reservoir Rd NW, Washington, DC, 20007, which will put you on the west side of the park near one of the main trailheads. See list of other trailhead locations with nearby on-street parking in the site description above. Obey posted parking restrictions. Be aware that some streets that access the Georgetown area are subject to lane reversals and one-way restrictions during weekday rush hours.

By Metro and Metrobus: From Dupont Circle Station on the Metro Red Line, take the D6 Metrobus to a stop on Reservoir Road near the French Embassy.

Nearby Sites:

Washington, DC: Battery Kemble Park, C&O Canal – Fletcher’s Cove and Boathouse, Constitution Gardens, Dumbarton Oaks Park, East Potomac Park (Hains Point) and the Tidal Basin, Georgetown Reservoir & Palisades Trolley Trail, National Zoo, Rock Creek Park, Theodore Roosevelt Island

Montgomery County: C&O Canal – Pennyfield, Violette’s & Riley’s Locks, McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area (Hughes Hollow), Rock Creek Regional Park – Lake Needwood, Rock Creek Regional Park – Meadowside Nature Center & Lake Frank, Seneca Creek State Park

Habitats:

Upland Deciduous Garden or ArboretumLawn, Ballfields, Golf CourseUrban or Small Town Landscape Old Fields, Shrubby Meadows Rivers & Streams

Features:

BeginnersFree - No Entry FeeHiking/Walking TrailsPets AllowedYoung People / Families

Type:

Community and Urban ParksNational Parks & Monuments