Klingle Road runs west to east across upper northwest Washington, DC, with many interruptions: it starts just a little east of MacArthur Boulevard, branching off of Macomb, and runs into Arizona. It resumes on the other side of Battery Kemble Park, and runs here from Foxhall Road to New Mexico Avenue, a whole two blocks. It resumes for a much shorter stint — about a block — between 39th and Massachusetts. If it continued from here, after a block, it would then run through the National Cathedral’s Close. But it doesn’t, resuming its onward march from 34th Street to Woodley Road, where it sort of continues, but only if you turn and travel for a short distance on Woodley before making a left. Here it ends again — sort of.
An ugly gate, decorated with “Road Closed” and “Pedestrians Prohibited” signs, bars the way. It’s possible to enter the closed portion of Klingle by making your connection through the Tregaron Conservancy Trails, which have no signs barring pedestrian access, if you feel more comfortable.
Imagine a road running through a flood zone which has not been maintained for a quarter of a century. Portions of Klingle, especially where I first entered, looked as if they could be used again almost immediately. On other sections, however, fully 3/4ths of the road had eroded and collapsed into the Klingle Tributary.
My personal favorite part of my exploration was where Klingle runs under the Klingle Valley Bridge/Connecticut Avenue Bridge. I’ve lived in DC for almost seven years and have walked across that bridge I can’t even count how many times.
There were sections of Klingle where the road had practically become one with the stream, and I had to jump from dry pavement to dry pavement — as I’m a bit on the heavy side, this probably looked as awkward as it felt, and it felt like I was going to slip and go down hard and wet (that’s what she said?).
This was one of the few examples of the remaining street markings.
After exploring Klingle, I meandered through Rock Creek Park to Adams Morgan and walked downtown. I noticed quite a few people looking at my chest — maybe because they were admiring my man boobs, or maybe because they really loved my Dark Lords t-shirt. Or maybe both!
We’ll see where I go exploring next week!