Monday, April 24, 2006
BURKE LAKE, VIRGINIA
Burke Lake is a Fairfax County recreation area located about 15 miles or so southwest of Washington, DC. This beautiful park offers a nice range of activities, such as golf, hiking, biking, camping, canoeing, kayaking, an ice cream parlor, mini golf and a miniature train ride. The only downside is that no swimming is allowed in the lake. Birdwatchers are pleased that an island inside the park's lake is an official bird sanctuary. One can go to the park any time of the year and observe various water fowl enjoying their habitat.
The lake's perimeter is 3.75 miles of mostly flat land with just a few small hills, which makes a nice circuit for hiking and biking. A trail from an adjacent park, South Run, meets the lake trail, so it's possible to extend one's hike or ride a mile or two by doing the South Run piece too.
Burke Lake is one of my favorite local hangouts. Sometimes I take my bike, sometimes I take my camera. Regardless of what I do, I find it easy to spend several hours at the lake and always regret it when it's time to leave.