Motts Run Reservoir

This 80-acre park was opened in 1974, three years after the completion of the reservoir, and since that time it has seen many changes. In 2000, a water treatment facility was completed near the dam to serve the City of Fredericksburg and parts of Spotsylvania County. In 2004, the log cabin nature center was finished. 2020 marks the completion of the mountain biking trails encircling the reservoir. Motts Run continues to provide recreational opportunities for fishermen and boaters, as well as a habitat for waterfowl and a host of other wildlife. Over 12 miles of hiking and biking trails encourage exploration around the surrounding forest.

Location: 6600 River Rd, Fredericksburg, VA 22401

Hours of Operation:

April 1—Oct. 31 7am-7pm
Closed every Tues-Wed
Nature Center is free to the public and open weekends from 12 noon – 5:00pm


  • Orienteering course, nature center, children’s play area, biking & hiking trails, picnic tables and grills, and jon boat, canoe, and kayak rentals.
  • You may bring your own boat (ELECTRIC MOTORS ONLY) to launch on the lake, or fish from the banks. Handicap fishing pier available. A fee is charged for fishing and boat launching area. Valid fishing license required. Bait available for purchase. 
  • Restrooms are available near the boat launch.
  • There’s plenty of parking.

Website: Motts Run Reservoir Recreation Area

Click HERE for a trail guide. Click HERE for a biking trail map.

We love Motts Run. When we moved to the area, we were surprised to find this little oasis tucked away near Central Park and all its craziness. Our first experience with Motts Run was Camp Wildwood for our oldest. If you’re looking for a summer camp, Motts Run is the place. You don’t even have to be a Fredericksburg resident to attend. You can find more information HERE.

Our youngest daughter attended a field trip here for preschool. She loved “Pocket” the resident snake and dip-netting for frogs and dragonfly nymphs.

Motts Run has been our go to for many family hikes and picnics. We’ve also enjoyed canoeing around the beautiful lake. Motts Run really has so much to offer. It’s definitely worth a visit!

Tips: When you arrive, please make sure to check in at the boat concessions near the boat launch. All that is needed is your last name and the number of people in your party. This is a protection for you just in case you don’t arrive back before the park closes.

Fall 2022 on the Hidden Creek Trail

There are several hiking trails at Motts Run Reservoir. When we visited in Fall 2022, we decided to follow the Hidden Creek Trail. It’s a 1.5 mile loop trail. It took us about an hour to hike. We tried looking for the Old Silo Trail off of Hidden Creek Trail, but the trail markings were not clear. We also tried taking the Shortcut on our way back, but once again the trail markings were not clear. We ended up just following the blue blazes for the Hidden Creek Trail.

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