Many creek crossings require using rocks or gravel, especially when water levels are high.
Just inside the trailhead, you'll want to make sure to take the blue trail to the right, marked with a blue horseshoe and a horizontal blue line that might at one point have been an arrow pointing right. If you miss this turn, you'll end up on the 18-mile Bull Run-Occoquan Trail
From the main parking area, find the trailhead for the Equestrian Loop Trail (Blue Trail)
as it winds to the northeast back along the road. This section stays to the north of the road in order to avoid the private archery range. After a half mile, the trail crosses the entrance road and begins to descend to the south.
After a mile, you'll pass the Hampton Loop
on the left. This hike takes the loop on the return but because all the trails at Fountainhead can be traveled in either direction, visitors can head north on the loop at any point or skip it altogether to cut down the mileage by a mile or so. Continue for a hundred feet or so to a stream crossing near the second entrance for the Hampton Loop
Head south along the eastern park boundary toward a bridge crossing near mile marker 1.25. Don't be surprised to hear or see mountain bikers to the south as the trails come close through this area.
Finally, at mile marker 1.75, you'll arrive at the loop section for the Equestrian Loop Trail. This hike continues east toward the Inlet Loop (Orange Trail)
, avoiding the western half of the Equestrian Trail loop. Another variation on this route is to make a bigger loop out of the eastern half of the Inlet Loop (Orange Trail)
and the western half of the Equestrian Loop Trail (Blue Trail)
Make sure to take a break at the 2.5-mile mark (between mile marker 1.25 and 1.5 of the Inlet Loop) for a viewpoint across the river. After completing the Inlet Loop (Orange Trail)
, retrace your steps with the option to add on the Hampton Loop
if you haven't already, before heading back to the main parking area.