Patapsco Valley State Park8020 Baltimore National PikeEllicott City, MD 21043
410-461-5005E-mail Patapsco Valley State Park
From the Beltway (I-695) take Rt. 40 West ( Exit 15). Follow Rt. 40 West 2 miles to the park entrance on the right.From I-70/Rt. 29 take Rt. 29 South ( Exit 87) to Rt. 40 East 2 miles to the park entrance on the right.
9 a.m. to Sunset
Certain activities are permitted outside of the regular park hours (e.g. fishing, boat launch, hunting where permitted). Please check with the park before your visit if you plan to engage in an activity which requires you to be in the park before or after the posted hours.
Patapsco Valley State Park extends along 32 miles of the Patapsco River, encompassing 16,043 acres and eight developed recreational areas. Recreational opportunities include hiking, fishing, camping, canoeing, horseback and mountain bike trails, as well as picnicking for individuals or large groups in the park’s many popular pavilions.
The park is nationally known for its trail opportunities and scenery. We have over 200 miles of trails, with 70 of those miles identified as maintained trails. There are hiker only trails and multi-use trails accessible from many areas of Patapsco.
Grist Mill Trail Closure - November 1-2, 2016
The Grist Mill Trail will be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday, November 1st and 2nd, from 8 a.m. to approximately 3:30 p.m. each day for tree work. The section of the trail to be closed will be from Ilchester Road to the Swinging Bridge in the Orange Grove area. The Swinging Bridge east to Lost Lake will remain open.
On or around August 1, 2016 portions of the Grist Mill Trail and the Patapsco River near the Bloede Dam will be closed until December 2017.
Beginning in late spring 2016, the next phase of restoration of the Patapsco River will begin in the Orange Grove area of Patapsco Valley State Park. This project will involve relocating a portion of the 42" main sanitary sewer line that currently runs through the Bloede Dam, and reburying the 12" Bonnie Branch sewer line that crosses the Patapsco River. The relocation of these lines will begin an expected 18 month closure of a portion of the Grist Mill Trail, removal of approximately 4 acres of trees behind the dam between the Grist Mill Trail and the Patapsco River, and increased truck and construction activity around the Illchester Bridge. Work to remove the Bloede Dam is expected to start once the sewer relocation is complete.
The Bloede Dam Removal Project will:
Improve public safety
Enhance recreational opportunities
Provide fish passage to spawning habitats upstream
Create a free-flowing river experience for all to enjoy in the park
For more information, please contact the park.
In one of Maryland’s first state parks (1907), the valley and its natural resources have been enjoyed by the Native Americans, explorers, settlers and present-day citizens. With its source in Frederick and Carroll counties, the Patapsco serves the Port of Baltimore, and empties into the Chesapeake Bay.
The Avalon Visitor Center houses exhibits spanning over 300 years of history along the Patapsco River. Housed in a 19th century stone dwelling in the Avalon Area, the center includes a re-creation of a 1930’s forest warden’s office.
Many Maryland State Parks have been approved as partners of Maryland Green Travel, a free and voluntary self-certification program that promotes and recognizes sustainable environmental practices by businesses in the tourism industry. These practices include energy efficiency, waste reduction, recycling and water conservation methods.
Click on this link to view the green profile and the list of sustainable practices for Patapsco Valley State Park.
New maps of the trails at Patapsco Valley State Park can be downloaded for free from this website. Please make sure to read the printing instructions and information for how to download the file to cell phones. The map is in a PDF format that requires Adobe Reader. To get the free Adobe Reader go to Adobe.com.
It's never too late to discover the joys of sitting around a roaring campfire, roasting marshmallows or sleeping under the stars!
With the new OPERATION: CAMPOUT! Program, we can lend you gear free of charge (includes a tent, chairs, stove, lantern and more). This program is designed for military individuals and military families new to camping or experienced campers stationed or recovering in this area.OPERATION: CAMPOUT! is an opportunity for families to reconnect with each other and the great outdoors in a comfortable, safe and relaxing setting.
Campsites have picnic tables and fire pits. Some sites have electric hook-ups. Restrooms and shower facilities are nearby.
Contact the park office directly by phone to make your reservation. Be sure to let us know you are reserving through OPERATION: CAMPOUT!
Would you like to receive monthly e-mail updates on what is happening in Patapsco Valley State Park, Soldiers Delight and Morgan Run? Sign up to receive the Patapsco Valley News. Park staff send e-mails no more than twice a week highlighting special activities occurring throughout the park. Send your e-mail address to DNR and enter contact information to be added to our mailing list.
Patapsco Valley State Park is one of Maryland’s most popular parks and serves a very high volume of visitors during summer weekends and holidays. To ensure the safety of our visitors and protection of the park’s natural resources and facilities, the park has a limited capacity.
During periods of high visitation, when the park’s capacity is reached, the park will be closed and traffic will be turned away from the park entrance. When that occurs, no additional vehicles / visitors will be allowed to enter the park, including those with members of their party who may already be in the park. If you are not traveling in the same vehicle with others in your party, we suggest that you all arrive at the same time.
When the park is closed due to being full to capacity, individuals and groups with shelter and/or camping reservations will be admitted, as parking is reserved for those purposes.
Based on recent experience and visitation trends, and depending on good weather, Patapsco Valley State Park will likely fill to capacity and close on Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day holiday weekends, and other weekends during the course of the summer. Please take this into consideration when planning your trip.
580 Taylor Ave, Annapolis MD 21401