The conservation and management of the Bull Run Mountains has been a collaboration between philanthropic neighbors, organized conservation groups, and the agencies of the Commonwealth of Virginia for 50 years. Virginia Outdoors Foundation is indebted to our partners whose contributions allow us to open the property for public enjoyment.
In 1994, the Bull Run Mountains Conservancy (BRMC) proposed a partnership with VOF to offer environmental education programs that would inspire the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts and conservationists. A formal agreement was created in 1995. Since that time, BRMC has been organizing guided hikes, summer camps, and other programs throughout the year. The Conservancy has also participated in conducting scientific research on the property. Many of the studies listed in our research section included BRMC involvement.
Also in 1994, a volunteer stewardship committee organized by Michael Massey, Jr. and Randall Dasher have helped VOF to manage the deer population, keep the boundaries of the preserve marked, construct footbridges and kiosks, and performed numerous challenging land management tasks.
In the late 1990s, the Virginia Natural Heritage Program began to survey VOF property in the Bull Run Mountains to determine its eligibility for inclusion as a state designated natural area preserve. After extensive field study and analysis, VOF’s property was designated as the Bull Run Mountains Natural Area Preserve in 2002. Since that time, staff from the Natural Heritage Program has provided technical expertise and guidance on preserve management issues.
In 2010, VOF partnered with the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club to improve and maintain our trails. Under their management, trails have been improved or relocated in order to minimize erosion and provide pleasant and dry hiking conditions. Additional trails have also been constructed to better share the natural and cultural resources with the public.