Maryland State Park First Day Hikes 1/1/2017

 

Assateague State Park First Day Hike

Logo for First Day Hikes

Ilia Fehrer / Judy Johnson Memorial Beach Walk
Time of Event: 1 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Assateague State Park concession building
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families of all ages. The guided hike will take place on the beach toward the north end of the island.
Length of Trail: One mile round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking. Hot chocolate will be served on the concession deck following the walk.
Additional Information:Join Volunteer Interpreter Chris Seymour and Ranger Bill Yates as we celebrate the beauty of Assateague Island. While the ocean provides one of the largest habitats around the island, there are many other on the interior of the island you may not realize exist. You'll explore the island from its sandy beach to its salty marshes exploring each habitat as its own mini island and taking a moment to realize that they offer unique experiences for humans that sit there a spell and absorb the sights and sounds of that particular zone.
The first Assateague Beach Walk was held on January 1, 1970. The newly formed Committee to Preserve Assateague Island hosted the inaugural event to draw attention to Assateague’s wild beauty. The committee was created by Ilia Fehrer, Judy Johnson and a few friends who had organized to rally against early plans for development of Assateague Island, which included a 25-mile highway and a number of commercial enterprises, and the Ocean Beach resort, much like Ocean City. A series of 1962 nor-easters interrupted construction, and eventually National and State Parks were established. The committee became the organization, Assateague Coastal Trust, who along with Assateague Island National Seashore and Assateague State Park sponsor the New Year’s Day walk each year. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Cedarville State Forest First Day Hike
A Winter Hike in the Forest

Time of Event: 1 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the park's headquarters office parking lot on Bee Oak Road.
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families.
Minimum Age for Children: Age 5, all children must be accompanied by an adult.
Length of Trail: Three miles on the Orange Trail. Hike will last approximately 1.5 hours. 
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking. Dogs on a leash are welcome.
RSVP: Call Cedarville State Forest at 301-888-1410 for information
Additional Information: Join the Friends of Cedarville State Forest on a steady winter hike in the forest and make a fresh start in the new year.

line

Cunningham Falls State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event: 11 a.m.
Meeting Location: Cunningham Falls State Park Manor Area Visitor Center
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families
Length of Trail: 1 mile
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Cunningham Falls State Park at 301-271-7574 to register. Or contact Ranger Norris at alicia.norris@maryland.gov
Additional Information: Join a park ranger for a one mile round-trip hike in the park's Manor Area, a location of significant iron-making history. This trail is relatively flat but has several sets of stairs along the way. This trail is not stroller friendly.

line

Dan's Mountain State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event: 11 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Hill Run Pavilion on Water Station Road
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families.
Length of Trail: Approximately 1 mile
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking. Dogs on a leash are welcome.
RSVP: Call Dan's Mountain State Park at 301-895-5453 to register
Additional Information: During this peaceful morning hike, a ranger will lead participants along the one-mile Dye School Trail, showcasing the natural and cultural history of the park. The route will steadily climb 200 feet to the Dye School foundation, and will then loop downhill for the second half of the hike. The hike will take less than one hour to complete. At the conclusion of the trek, hikers will be greeted with a warm fire and hot cocoa at the pavilion. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Elk Neck State Park First Day Hike
Under the Frost!

Time of Event: 1 to 3 p.m.
Meeting Location: Maudlin Mountain in the North East River area. (4395 Turkey Point Road, Northeast Maryland)
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families
Length of Trail: Approximately 1.5 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Elk Neck State Park at 410-287-5333 to register. Or contact Michael Hyde at michael.hyde@maryland.gov
Additional Information: Ring in the New Year by breaking in your hiking boots! Join a Ranger on an invigorating one and a half mile trek on the Mauldin Mountain Loop, learning more about the winter behaviors of Elk Neck’s critters along the way. Meet at Mauldin Mountain in the North East River area. Donations welcomed!

line

Fair Hill NRMA First Day Hike

Time of Event: 11 a.m. - Hike may cover some rocky and steep terrain
Meeting Location:
Park at Walls Hall/Fairgrounds, 4680 Telegraph Road, Elkton MD 21921, Elkton MD
Degree of Difficulty:
 Easy to moderate hike for families of all ages
Length of Trail:
3 miles round trip
Things to bring:
 Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP:
 Families are encouraged to call Fair Hill NRMA at 410-398-1246 to register.
Additional Information: Set to reconnect with the natural world as we journey on wooded unmarked trails within the fairgrounds quadrant. Pets on a leash are welcome.

line

Fort Frederick State Park First Day Hike
With Nature's Assistance - Shaping the 18th Century Landscape

Time of Event: 11 a.m. Hike will last approximately 2 hours
Meeting Location: Fort Frederick State Park Visitor Center
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families
Length of Trail: Approximately 2 to 3 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Famiies are encouraged to call Fort Frederick State Park at 301-842-2155 to register
Additional Information: Join a park ranger to learn more about American Indian and early settlers' roles in shaping the landscape, as well as how nature affected man's movement and settlement patterns in the 18th century. Find out about the 18th century forest compared to today's woodlands. The hike will travel through woods and fields over various types of terrain.

line

Gambrill State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event: 4 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Gambrill State Park High Knob Area Nature Center
Degree of Difficulty: Easy hike
Length of Trail: 1 mile
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking, and a camera (optional).
RSVP: Reservations are recommended. Call Gambrill State Park at 301-271-7574
Additional Information: Join a park ranger for a one-mile round-trip hike along the park's Green and Black Locust Trails in the High Knob Area. This easy hike follows the ridge to three beautiful overlooks. Take advantage of the rare chance to view the valley at sunset. The trail is not stroller accessible and not appropriate for adults carrying children in backpacks due to hazards. Bring a flashlight.

line

Greenbrier State Park First Day Hike
Greenbrier Is Turning 50!

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hike around the lake will last approximately 1.5 hours
Meeting Location: Meet at the Greenbrier Visitor Center
Degree of Difficulty: Easy hike
Length of Trail: The lakeside hike is about 1.5 miles, which will take about 1.5 hours
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking, and a camera (optional).
RSVP: Reservations are recommended. Call Greenbrier State Park at 301-791-4767
Additional Information: Meet with a Ranger at the visitor center, then take a self-guided, interpretive hike around the lake. Take the easy lakeside trail and learn about the park and the wildlife that make their habitat in and around the state park. Pets on a leash are welcome. Greenbrier State Park first opened 50 years ago on Memorial Day weekend in 1967. Since the park's opening families have played together, creating generation after generation of memories. Bring in the New Year at Greenbrier State Park as the park turns 50.

line

Gunpowder Falls State Park First Day Hike
Hike at Jerusalem Mill

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to Noon
Meeting Location: Meet at the Blacksmith Shop in Jerusalem Village
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families. This trail contains natural features that become more challenging when ice and snow are present.
Length of Trail: Approximately 1.75 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Gunpowder Falls State Park at 410-592-2897 to register
Additional Information: The Friends of Jerusalem Mill will lead hikers along the Little Gunpowder Falls. The hike will cover some wet or uneven terrain. Meet at the Blacksmith Shop in Jerusalem for refreshments before the hike. Please call to register.

line

Merkle Wildlife Sanctuary First Day Hike
Puppies on the Patuxent Hike

Time of Event: 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Frank Islislo Visitor Center
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families.
Length of Trail: 1.5 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Merkle Wildlife Sanctuary at 301-888-1377 to register
Additional Information: Bring your pup and join park staff for a hike along the scenic Patuxent River. This hike is on a flat gravel surface, suitable for strollers, and offers excellent views of the middle Patuxent River. Stops will be made at the boardwalk area and the Catfish Pond, where hikers will be able to view wildlife riverside and pond side. Finish your hike at the visitor center to see displays, animals and enjoy light refreshments. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

New Germany State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event: 3 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the New Germany Lake House
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families.
Length of Trail: 1.5 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call New Germany State Park at 301-895-5453 to register
Additional Information: During this invigorating winter hike, a ranger will lead participants along a 1.5-mile trail, showcasing the beautiful mountain landscape with scenic views of Poplar Lick Run and lush hemlock forests along the park's Turnpike Trail and Acorn Loop. The hike will take about one hour to complete. At the conclustion of the trek, hikers will be greeted with a warm fire and hot cocoa inside the Lake House. Dogs on a leash are welcome. Snowshoes will be available for rent, weather permitting.

line

North Point State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to Noon
Meeting Location: "A" parking lot immediately beyond the contact station
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for families of all ages
Length of Trail: 2 miles round trip
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call North Point State Park at 410-592-2897
Additional Information: Our talented Maryland Conservation Corps crew members will be leading this hike down the scenic Black Marsh Trail. Bring binoculars for bird watching and other wildlife viewing opportunities. History buffs will also enjoy learning about the historic Bay Shore Amusement Park and even seeing the 1900's trolley car powerhouse. Participants are encouraged to bring a lunch to enjoy at the picnic area overlooking the Chesapeake Bay after the hike.

line

Patapsco Valley State Park First Day Hike
Orange Grove History and Cascade Falls Trail Hike

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
Meeting Location: Orange Grove parking lot - accessed through the Avalon entrance at 5120 South Street, Halethorpe MD 21227 
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate to dfficult hike
Length of Trail: Approximately 1.8 mile loops
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Patapsco Valley State Park at 410-461-5005 to register 
Additional Information: Join the Maryland Conservation Corps as they lead you on a hike on the Cascade Falls Trail at the Orange Grove/Avalon Area of the park. Hikers will enjoy the alluring cascading waterfalls, the dazzling winter hills and valleys and learn many nature fun facs. Celebrate afterwards with hot coffee and cider at Shelter 106.

line

Patapsco Valley State Park First Day Hike
McKeldin Hike

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to Noon
Meeting Location: McKeldin Area - 11676 Marriottsville Road, Marriottsville MD 21104 (enter park and follow signs for parking and meeting location)
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike
Length of Trail: Approximately 2 miles
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Patapsco Valley State Park at 410-461-5005 or 443-721-1604 to register 
Additional Information: Join park staff for a family hike along the McKeldin area's Plantation Trail. The hike will include scenic views of the river, wildlife and winter nature.

line

Pocomoke River State Park First Day Hike
Trail of Change Hike

Time of Event: 10 a.m.
Meeting Location: Algonquin Pavilion, 3461 Worcester Highway, Snow Hill, MD
Degree of Difficulty: Easy hike for all ages
Length of Trail: 1 mile
Things to bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Pocomoke River State Park at 410-632-2566 to register 
Additional Information: Bundle up and join park rangers as we start the New Year on the right foot with an easy hike. Explore the Trail of Change and the wonders of the bald cypress swamp along the scenic Pocomoke River. You may encounter a bald eagle as they winter here in large numbers. Dogs on a leash are welcome. Warm up with hot cocoa around a fire after the hike in the Algonquin Pavilion.

line

Rocks State Park First Day Hike
Winter Waterfall

Time of Event:11:30 a.m.
Meeting Location: Falling Branch parking area - 1026 Falling Branch Road, Pylesville MD 21132
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate for families
Length of Trail: 1 miles round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Rocks State Park at 410-557-7994 to register
Additional Information: Hike to the gorgeous Kilgore Falls in winter - possibly the best time to visit. dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Rocky Gap State Park First Day Hike
Healthy Parks, Healthy People Bear Ridge Trail

Time of Event:1 p.m.
Meeting Location: Rocky Gap State Park Touch of Nature Parking Lot (southwest of the Casino on Old Hancock Road NE)
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate for families
Length of Trail:1.7 miels and 2.2 miles
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Rocky Gap State Park at 391-722-1480 to register
Additional Information: Rocky Gap State Park and the American Cancer Society sponsors this hike that promotes healthy lifestyles and the importance of daily physical activity. Donations are $5 per person with children 12 and under free. All proceeds benefit the American Cancer Society Relay for Life of Allegany County, which helps raise funds for cancer research and patient programs. There are two options for hikers with a 1.7 mile up and back option or a 2.2 loop trail of easy to moderate ascents and descents. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Seneca Creek State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event:Two departures at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Blue Jay and Nuthatch Pavilion area (follow the signs)
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate for all ages
Length of Trail: 2.5 miles round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Seneca Creek State Park at 301-924-2127 to register
Additional Information: Join the rangers for a hike traversing several areas of the park. The hike will follow a portion of the Long Draught Trail, Kingfisher Overlook, old farm roads and the Great Seneca Trail for fantastic photo opportunities. Pets on a leash are welcome. Warm up with hot cocoa and smores around a fire at the Nuthatch Pavilion after the hike.

line

Smallwood State Park First Day Hike
Yoga Hike

Time of Event:11 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the park's Discovery Center parking lot
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for all ages
Length of Trail: 1.5 miles. Hike will last approximately 1.5 hours
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Smallwood State Park at 301-743-7613 to register
Additional Information:Join the rangers of Smallwood State Park on a yoga hike in the park and make a fresh start in the New Year. Hot chocolate and refreshments will be provided in the Discovery Center after the hike.

line

Soldiers Delight NEA First Day Hike
Sunrise Hike

Time of Event:7:15 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the overlook just north of the park's Visitor Center, located at 5100 Deer Park Road, Owings Mills MD 21117
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for all ages
Length of Trail: 2 miles. Hike will last approximately 1 hour
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Soldiers Delight at 410-922-3044 to register
Additional Information:Join a volunter park ranger for a sunrise hike. After the sun has risen, we will take an hour-long hike along the Choate Mine Trail. Dress for cold weather and wear water resistant hiking boots for uneven terrain. Pets on a leash are welcome.

line

Soldiers Delight NEA First Day Hike
Winter History Hike

Time of Event:1:30 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the park's Visitor Center, located at 5100 Deer Park Road, Owings Mills MD 21117
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for all ages
Length of Trail: 2 miles. Hike will last approximately 2 hours
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Patapsco Valley State Park staff (who manage Soldiers Delight) at 410-461-5005 to register
Additional Information:Join volunteer/historian ranger Johnny Johnson on New Year's Day as Soldiers Delight for a winter history hike around the area. Interpretation of several historical features includes the Red Dog Lodge, the Choate Mine and the overlook. Start off 2017 on a positive note and join us for an afternoon of excercise, learning and enjoying the great outdoors.

line

St. Mary's River State Park First Day Hike

Time of Event:10 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the park's parking lot
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for all ages
Length of Trail: 2 miles round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call St. Mary's River State Park staff  at 301-872-5688 to register
Additional Information:Join a ranger on an invigorating two mile trek on the main trail around the lake. Dogs on a leash are welcome. Participants that wish to extend their hike can continue the 7.5 mile loop around the lake.

line

Susquehanna State Park First Day Hike
Explore the Greenway

Time of Event:11 a.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at Fisherman's Park below the Conowingo Dam (2569 Shures Landing Road, Darlington MD 21034)
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families
Length of Trail: 2 miles round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Susquehanna State Park at 410-557-7994 register
Additional Information:Join a park ranger and see fantastic views of the Susquehanna River in winter. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Swallow Falls State Park First Day Hike
Winter is Waterfall

Time of Event:3 p.m.
Meeting Location: Meet at the Swallow Falls Ranger Station, 2470 Maple Glade Road, Oakland MD 21550
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate hike for families. Recommended for ages 8 and older
Length of Trail: 1 mile round trip
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Swallow Falls State Park at 301-334-9180 to register
Additional Information:Join a park ranger for a mile-long loop that lets hikers enjoy the sights and sounds of Western Maryland forests in the winter. See Maryland's highest waterfall and largest old growth forest in full winter splendor. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

line

Helen Avalynne Tawes Garden First Day Hike

Time of Event:1 p.m.
Meeting Location: Weekend entrance to garden located off Herb Sachs Drive between the two court buildings. Look for the garden locator signs with the Black-Eyed Susan flower. (580 Taylor Avenue)
Degree of Difficulty: Easy stroll on hard surfaces
Length of Trail: Half mile
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather and bring water for drinking.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Tawes Garden Manager Jay Myers at 410-260-8189 to register
Additional Information:Take some time out of your busy New Year's Day to join the Tawes Garden staff on a walk of the Tawes Garden, Annapolis's only free public garden. Afterwards enjoy hot cocoa and homemade cookies. Dogs on a leash are welcome. Stroller friendly hike.

line

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail First Day Hike

Time of Event: 10 a.m. to Noon
Meeting Location: Meet at Monkton Station (1820 Monkton Road, Monkton MD 21111). Limited parking - please obey posted parking limitation signs on Monkton Road if parking lot is at capacity.
Degree of Difficulty: The Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail is a surfaced trail, which makes it an easy hike for all ages. The trail is also wheelchair accessible. The trail contains natural features that become more challenging when snow or ice are present
Length of Trail: 1.5 miles 
Things to Bring: Participants are asked to wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow, cold), and bring drinking water.
RSVP: Families are encouraged to call Gunpowder Falls State Park at 410-592-2897 to register 
Additional Information: Ranger Jen Cashell will be leading this guided hike along the beautiful Big Gunpowder Falls. Hot cider and treats will be offered in the Station afterwards. Restroom facilities available.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​