In this series of posts, I hope to encourage people to get outdoors. Go for a hike, a bike ride or visit a historical site. Maryland is full of parks and natural areas that are just waiting to be explored.
Patapsco Valley State Park
Patapsco State Park is located in Ellicott City, Maryland. It encompasses over 16,000 acres and follows 32 miles of the Patapsco River. The park is divided into 8 areas: Avalon, Glen Artney, Orange Grove, Daniels, Hilton, Hollofield, Mckeldin,
Throughout the park, you will find over 200 miles of trails, 70 identified as maintained trails. Some trails are multi-use, others are for hikers only. Throughout the 8 areas, you will find opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, canoeing, horseback riding, and mountain biking.
Gunpowder Falls State Park
Established to protect both the big and little Gunpowder rivers, Gunpowder is one of Maryland’s largest state parks. It covers over 18,000 acres in Harford and Baltimore counties.
The Hereford area you can fish, hike, canoe, and kayak. The Torrey C.Brown rail trail extends for 19.7 miles, from Ashland, Maryland all the way to the Pennsylvania line. The Sweet Air Area is ideal for hiking and horseback riding. The central area is the oldest part of the park and great for hiking and bike riding. At Dundee Creel Marina Boat Landing you will find boat rentals, fuel, and a marina store.
Elk Neck State Park
Located in Nort East Maryland, in Cecil County. Elk Neck State Park is located on a peninsula formed by the Chesapeake Bay and Elk Neck River. Elk Neck boasts over 2,000 acres of land,250 campsites, 4 youth group sites, and 19 cabins.
It provides a variety of terrain, from heavily wooded, to marshland to clay cliffs and sandy shores. Divided into 4 areas- The Turkey Point Lighthouse, North East River area, and a picnic shelter( a great day use area for swimming kayaking and fishing). The Rogue Harbor boat launch facility provides public boating, access to the Elk River and fishing piers. The Elk River camping area has 250 campsites, 19 youth cabins, park store, playground, and nature center.
Wye Oak State Park
Wye Oak State Park is 29 acres established to protect the stream valley and land from development. The state of Maryland bought the tree in 1939. It was declared the state tree in 1941. The 96-foot tall tree with crown spread of nearly 119 feet, covered nearly 1/3 acre. The tree toppled on June 6, 2002, during a thunderstorm. It was believed to be more than 460 years old. Next to where the tree stood is a 1 1/2 story brick structure that dates back to Colonial times. It is thought to be the second oldest one-room schoolhouse in Talbot County.
Tuckahoe State Park
Tuckahoe State Park, in Queen Ann Maryland boasts a 60-acre lake for boating and fishing. 20 acres of scenic hiking, biking, and horse trails. Canoeing, hunting in certain areas and picnic areas are available. It also has a great recycled tire playground to entertain youngsters.
These are just a few of many parks waiting in Maryland for you to come take an outdoor adventure! Stay tuned next week for another edition of Get Outdoors-Guide To State Parks!