About the Hitt/Orange Trail (Urquhart Cemetery)
The Hitt/Orange trail of the Germanna Foundation’s Siegen Forest provides a unique opportunity to walk in the footsteps of history. Orange Trail Guide (pdf)
You access it via a path that starts just behind the Cloister at the Germanna Foundation Visitor Center.
The Hitt/Orange trail is a short (0.58 mile) loop trail.
The first section is relatively flat until it passes the Urquhart Cemetery side trail.
The Urquhart Cemetery trail takes you past the cemetery and on to the Germanna Community College parking lot.
After the intersection of the Urquhart Cemetery trail, the path descends sharply to the level of the river.
The visitor will be walking below the cliff (on the right) that housed several stone buildings (houses of miller Urquhart).
After the trail turns northwest, this trail intersects with the River/Red trail.
If you wish, you may turn left to follow the River/Red trail.
Please note that the River/Red trail is a one-way trail so you will have to walk in and then turn around to get back to the Visitor Center.
If you follow the orange blazes, you come to the access road back to the Visitor Center.
Turn right and go up the hill to return to the parking lot.
The Urquhart Cemetery contains several Urquhart gravestones.
One important one is the gravestone of Dr. Charles Urquhart (below), the doctor who pronounced President Lincoln’s Assassin, John Wilkes Booth, dead in Port Royal Virginia on April 26, 1865.
Dr. Urquhart was born in Germanna as his parents operated Spotswood’s mill (called the Urquhart Mill) until it was burned down early in the Civil War.
The burial plots are surrounded by a small stone fence and the sign was placed there as part of a Boy Scout Project.
Trail Rules & Safety Guidelines
Vehicles may park in marked parking spaces only. To help protect our trails and property, please remove/replace the yellow chain across our access road as you come and/or go after Visitor Center hours. Germanna Community College Security patrols our property, and visitors may be subject to video surveillance. There is no general public boat access to the river (members and organized groups may be granted boat access with advance written permission), and there are no restroom facilities along the trails. All visitors must adhere to “pack it in, pack it out” practices, and follow these additional rules and safety guidelines:
- Use of metal detectors or other sensing devices, digging or other ground disturbance, or removal or collection of artifacts, materials, plants, or relics is strictly prohibited. Please notify the Foundation if you see any evidence of such activities.
- Help protect our historical sites by staying on the trails. Do not walk on the Civil War earthworks or walk on or move rocks at any historical building sites.
- Do not drink water from streams or the river.
- Wear insect repellent and appropriate clothing and shoes. Beware of poison ivy, chiggers, ticks, and snakes. Foxes, bears and even a coyote have been reported in the Forest.
- Picnicking is allowed at the established area(s). No overnight camping and no fires are allowed, except for Scouts and other organized and supervised groups, and only with advance written permission from the Foundation. Pack out all your trash.
- Bicycles, motorized vehicles, and horses are not permitted on the trails. Dogs are allowed if leashed and all solid waste must be picked up and packed out.
- Although hunting inside the Foundation’s Siegen Forest is illegal, it is wise to exercise caution and wear bright colors when walking the trail during hunting season.
- Beware of trail hazards and uneven surfaces. Please notify the Foundation if you notice any areas of the trail requiring special maintenance or work. Wear sturdy shoes or boots.
- Road traces and animal trails crisscross the area. To stay on the hiking trail, follow the map carefully and look for the 2” x 6” colored blazes on the trees.
- Trail markings: a single blaze indicates you are on the path. The blazes are spaced so you should see the next one as you pass a blaze. A double blaze indicates the trail changes direction.