I've walked down the trail many times before. But I never noticed that there was a dirt path off the main trail, not long after you get to the part where there are a few private mansions off of a long driveway. (I think they got a cool new "Private Property/No Trespassing" sign. There was one before, but I don't remember the metal deer.)
There was a new (or at least I think it was new) glass case with maps and information about the Banneker Museum not too far from the dirt path. We decided to take the dirt trail, not sure exactly what we would find. After just a few short minutes, it was like we were in the woods in the middle of nowhere. A short walk later, we started to see signs pointing us to the Banneker Museum and to other trails.
There was a clearing to the below house about one half of a mile later.