The Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority has issued a new, more visually appealing guide for bicyclists, runners, skaters, cross-country skiers and other users of the Washington & Old Dominion trail.

The 68-page booklet features digitally created maps and photos of the 100-foot-wide, 45-mile-long trail, which marks its 30th anniversary this year.

The W&OD trail follows an old railroad route through Arlington, Fairfax and Loudoun counties as well as the city of Falls Church and the towns of Vienna and Herndon. The new guide also includes trails in Alexandria, Fairfax City and the District that connect directly or indirectly to the W&OD.

Paul McCray, a park authority trail manager, said in a written statement, "People have said that these maps are much more clear and that the information in the guide is the information people want."

Each of the maps of the various trail sections points out the locations of recreational, historical, cultural and scenic features that lie near or intersect with the trail.

Other information in the guide includes facts about the trail's 109 years as a railroad and its conversion for recreational use beginning in the mid-1970s. Sections of the guide are devoted to the bridle path that runs parallel to the main trail for 32 miles between Vienna and Purcellville and to parks and other attractions accessible from the trail.

Copies of the trail guide are available in area bicycle and sports stores or by mail from the park authority for $5.75. The address is 5400 Ox Rd., Fairfax Station, Va. 22039.

For more information, call 703-729-0596 or visit or