Elkridge, MD Cross Country Skiing Trails and Maps

1098 Reviews

Looking for the best Cross Country Skiing trails around Elkridge?

Find the top rated cross country skiing trails in Elkridge, whether you're looking for an easy short cross country skiing trail or a long cross country skiing trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a cross country skiing trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.

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Activities
Length
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Type
22 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

B&A Trail

13.3 mi
State: MD
Asphalt

Bluemont Junction Trail

1.3 mi
State: VA
Asphalt

Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park

184.5 mi
State: DC, MD
Brick, Concrete, Crushed Stone, Dirt

Cross County Trail (VA)

40 mi
State: VA
Asphalt, Ballast, Concrete, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Gravel

Great American Rail-Trail

3743.9 mi
State: DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

H & F Trolley Trail

0.72 mi
State: MD
Asphalt

Hanover Trolley Trail

3.5 mi
State: PA
Crushed Stone

Heritage Rail Trail County Park

27.4 mi
State: PA
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Indian Head Rail Trail

13.4 mi
State: MD
Asphalt

Lake Accotink Trail

4.5 mi
State: VA
Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Gravel

Lake Artemesia Trail

1.35 mi
State: MD
Asphalt

Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway Trail

2.5 mi
State: MD
Crushed Stone

Mount Vernon Trail

18 mi
State: VA
Asphalt, Boardwalk

Patuxent Branch Trail

4.6 mi
State: MD
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

Rock Creek Park Trails

8.5 mi
State: DC
Asphalt, Dirt

Savage Mill Trail

1 mi
State: MD
Asphalt, Dirt, Gravel

Stony Run Trail

2.9 mi
State: MD
Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Grass, Gravel, Woodchips

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail

19.7 mi
State: MD
Crushed Stone, Dirt

WB&A Trail

13.1 mi
State: MD
Asphalt
Accordion

Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail

3.3 mi
State: MD, VA
Concrete
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
If you are looking to augment your physical workout with some intellectual exercise, look no further than the Baltimore & Annapolis Trail. The scenic, paved, 13-mile community trail is brimming with...
MD 13.3 mi Asphalt
The Bluemont Junction Trail is a short paved trail that branches off from the popular Washington and Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) in the heart of Arlington. The trail was built on a spur line that once...
VA 1.3 mi Asphalt
Following the Potomac River, the C&O Canal Towpath traverses the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park for 184.5 miles between Georgetown in Washington, D.C., and Cumberland, Maryland. For...
DC, MD 184.5 mi Brick, Concrete, Crushed Stone, Dirt
The Cross County Trail is a multi-use trail that generally follows the various stream valleys in Fairfax County, Virginia. It is officially named the Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail in recognition...
VA 40 mi Asphalt, Ballast, Concrete, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Gravel
Note: This developing route is not yet fully contiguous – it is just over 50% complete. Please refer to the Trail Map for more information on the existing sections of trail, as well as the online...
DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY 3743.9 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
The Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park course for 2.5 miles through the heavily wooded park between Ilchester Road and Lost Lake. The trail is gentle and wheelchair accessible. It passes...
MD 2.5 mi Asphalt
Sitting on the corner of East Main Street and Alley 5 in Thurmont is a green and white one-story building. Murals decorate its walls, depicting the history of the famous Hagerstown and Frederick...
MD 0.72 mi Asphalt
The Hanover Trolley Trail is being built along the 16-mile corridor of the York-Hanover Trolley Line that ran between the two cities in the early 1900s. Currently, about a quarter of that distance is...
PA 3.5 mi Crushed Stone
Heritage Rail Trail County Park (HRT), along with the connecting Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail that continues south through Maryland, are in Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s Hall of Fame. Both trails follow...
PA 27.4 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Located just 18 miles south of our nation's capital, the Indian Head Rail Trail offers a unique natural outdoor experience, seemingly far removed from urban development and its associated chaotic...
MD 13.4 mi Asphalt
In Northern Virginia's suburban community of Springfield, Lake Accotink Park provides a wilderness escape amid the city surroundings. The 500-acre park features picnic areas, miniature golf, an...
VA 4.5 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Gravel
The Lake Artemesia Trail—one component of the larger Anacostia Tributary Trail System—completely encircles its scenic eponymous lake in Prince George's County, Maryland. The trail is also a great...
MD 1.35 mi Asphalt
Maryland's Susquehanna State Park is recognized for challenging hiking and biking trails, camping facilities, rock outcroppings, boating, a museum and restored historical sites. But none of these...
MD 2.5 mi Crushed Stone
The 18-mile Mount Vernon Trail is one of the Washington, D.C. Metro area's most popular trails. Just across the Potomac River from D.C. in Virginia, the trail links Theodore Roosevelt Island Park with...
VA 18 mi Asphalt, Boardwalk
The Patuxent Branch Trail is part of a 20-mile trail system over and around the rolling hills of Howard County that follows a former Baltimore and Ohio Railroad line along the Patuxent River. The...
MD 4.6 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
Closure Notice: Beginning March 31, 2021, DDOT and the NPS will be working on a construction project that will impact much of the southern segment of the trail (between M Street and Broad Branch Road...
DC 8.5 mi Asphalt, Dirt
The Savage Mill Trail in Savage Park travels along the rolling Patuxent River through the grounds of an old cotton mill. In the early 1800s, Savage was a major manufacturing center, harnessing power...
MD 1 mi Asphalt, Dirt, Gravel
Baltimore’s Stony Run Trail follows an old Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad line through nearly 3 miles of wooded stream valleys and small parks, providing a quiet escape from the hustle and bustle...
MD 2.9 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Grass, Gravel, Woodchips
The Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail is one of the best hiking and biking trails in the Mid-Atlantic region. It allows for nearly 20 miles of flat travel, punctuated by a number of access points and an...
MD 19.7 mi Crushed Stone, Dirt
Central Maryland's WB&A Trail occupies the former Washington, Baltimore & Annapolis Electric Railway corridor—hence its name—for its entire route. The railroad operated electric commuter trains...
MD 13.1 mi Asphalt
Accordion
The Washington & Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) is one of suburban Washington, D.C.'s most popular rail-trails. The heavily used trail is frequented by commuters and recreationists alike, and is a...
VA 45 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail provides a superb link between Alexandria, VA, and Maryland's National Harbor over the Potomac River. This well-used trail crosses on the up-river side of the bridge...
MD, VA 3.3 mi Concrete

Now, More Than Ever, Trails Matter!

During COVID-19, trails are being counted on as places where people can find solace and respite and we need your support to keep trails open and provide these critical FREE resources! Please continue to practice physical distancing and check the status of your trail before heading out!

Trails by activity

Heritage Rail Trail County Park

PA - 27.4 miles

Heritage Rail Trail County Park (HRT), along with the connecting Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail that continues south through Maryland, are in Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s Hall of Fame. Both trails follow...

Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park

DC,MD - 184.5 miles

Following the Potomac River, the C&O Canal Towpath traverses the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park for 184.5 miles between Georgetown in Washington, D.C., and Cumberland, Maryland. For...

Rock Creek Park Trails

DC - 8.5 miles

Closure Notice: Beginning March 31, 2021, DDOT and the NPS will be working on a construction project that will impact much of the southern segment of the trail (between M Street and Broad Branch Road...

Bluemont Junction Trail

VA - 1.3 miles

The Bluemont Junction Trail is a short paved trail that branches off from the popular Washington and Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) in the heart of Arlington. The trail was built on a spur line that once...

Accordion

Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park

MD - 2.5 miles

The Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park course for 2.5 miles through the heavily wooded park between Ilchester Road and Lost Lake. The trail is gentle and wheelchair accessible. It passes...

Stony Run Trail

MD - 2.9 miles

Baltimore’s Stony Run Trail follows an old Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad line through nearly 3 miles of wooded stream valleys and small parks, providing a quiet escape from the hustle and bustle...

Washington and Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park (W&OD)

VA - 45 miles

The Washington & Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) is one of suburban Washington, D.C.'s most popular rail-trails. The heavily used trail is frequented by commuters and recreationists alike, and is a...

WB&A Trail

MD - 13.1 miles

Central Maryland's WB&A Trail occupies the former Washington, Baltimore & Annapolis Electric Railway corridor—hence its name—for its entire route. The railroad operated electric commuter trains...

Cross County Trail (VA)

VA - 40 miles

The Cross County Trail is a multi-use trail that generally follows the various stream valleys in Fairfax County, Virginia. It is officially named the Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail in recognition...

Great American Rail-Trail

DC,IA,ID,IL,IN,MD,MT,NE,OH,PA,WA,WV,WY - 3743.9 miles

Note: This developing route is not yet fully contiguous – it is just over 50% complete. Please refer to the Trail Map for more information on the existing sections of trail, as well as the online...

Patuxent Branch Trail

MD - 4.6 miles

The Patuxent Branch Trail is part of a 20-mile trail system over and around the rolling hills of Howard County that follows a former Baltimore and Ohio Railroad line along the Patuxent River. The...

Indian Head Rail Trail

MD - 13.4 miles

Located just 18 miles south of our nation's capital, the Indian Head Rail Trail offers a unique natural outdoor experience, seemingly far removed from urban development and its associated chaotic...

H & F Trolley Trail

MD - 0.72 miles

Sitting on the corner of East Main Street and Alley 5 in Thurmont is a green and white one-story building. Murals decorate its walls, depicting the history of the famous Hagerstown and Frederick...

Savage Mill Trail

MD - 1 miles

The Savage Mill Trail in Savage Park travels along the rolling Patuxent River through the grounds of an old cotton mill. In the early 1800s, Savage was a major manufacturing center, harnessing power...

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail

MD - 19.7 miles

The Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail is one of the best hiking and biking trails in the Mid-Atlantic region. It allows for nearly 20 miles of flat travel, punctuated by a number of access points and an...

Lake Accotink Trail

VA - 4.5 miles

In Northern Virginia's suburban community of Springfield, Lake Accotink Park provides a wilderness escape amid the city surroundings. The 500-acre park features picnic areas, miniature golf, an...

B&A Trail

MD - 13.3 miles

If you are looking to augment your physical workout with some intellectual exercise, look no further than the Baltimore & Annapolis Trail. The scenic, paved, 13-mile community trail is brimming with...

Mount Vernon Trail

VA - 18 miles

The 18-mile Mount Vernon Trail is one of the Washington, D.C. Metro area's most popular trails. Just across the Potomac River from D.C. in Virginia, the trail links Theodore Roosevelt Island Park with...

Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway Trail

MD - 2.5 miles

Maryland's Susquehanna State Park is recognized for challenging hiking and biking trails, camping facilities, rock outcroppings, boating, a museum and restored historical sites. But none of these...

Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail

MD,VA - 3.3 miles

The Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail provides a superb link between Alexandria, VA, and Maryland's National Harbor over the Potomac River. This well-used trail crosses on the up-river side of the bridge...

Bluemont Junction Trail

VA - 1.3 miles

The Bluemont Junction Trail is a short paved trail that branches off from the popular Washington and Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) in the heart of Arlington. The trail was built on a spur line that once...

Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park

MD - 2.5 miles

The Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park course for 2.5 miles through the heavily wooded park between Ilchester Road and Lost Lake. The trail is gentle and wheelchair accessible. It passes...

H & F Trolley Trail

MD - 0.72 miles

Sitting on the corner of East Main Street and Alley 5 in Thurmont is a green and white one-story building. Murals decorate its walls, depicting the history of the famous Hagerstown and Frederick...

Heritage Rail Trail County Park

PA - 27.4 miles

Heritage Rail Trail County Park (HRT), along with the connecting Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail that continues south through Maryland, are in Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s Hall of Fame. Both trails follow...

Accordion

B&A Trail

MD - 13.3 miles

If you are looking to augment your physical workout with some intellectual exercise, look no further than the Baltimore & Annapolis Trail. The scenic, paved, 13-mile community trail is brimming with...

Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park

DC,MD - 184.5 miles

Following the Potomac River, the C&O Canal Towpath traverses the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park for 184.5 miles between Georgetown in Washington, D.C., and Cumberland, Maryland. For...

Washington and Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park (W&OD)

VA - 45 miles

The Washington & Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) is one of suburban Washington, D.C.'s most popular rail-trails. The heavily used trail is frequented by commuters and recreationists alike, and is a...

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail

MD - 19.7 miles

The Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail is one of the best hiking and biking trails in the Mid-Atlantic region. It allows for nearly 20 miles of flat travel, punctuated by a number of access points and an...

Patuxent Branch Trail

MD - 4.6 miles

The Patuxent Branch Trail is part of a 20-mile trail system over and around the rolling hills of Howard County that follows a former Baltimore and Ohio Railroad line along the Patuxent River. The...

Indian Head Rail Trail

MD - 13.4 miles

Located just 18 miles south of our nation's capital, the Indian Head Rail Trail offers a unique natural outdoor experience, seemingly far removed from urban development and its associated chaotic...

Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail

MD,VA - 3.3 miles

The Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail provides a superb link between Alexandria, VA, and Maryland's National Harbor over the Potomac River. This well-used trail crosses on the up-river side of the bridge...

Great American Rail-Trail

DC,IA,ID,IL,IN,MD,MT,NE,OH,PA,WA,WV,WY - 3743.9 miles

Note: This developing route is not yet fully contiguous – it is just over 50% complete. Please refer to the Trail Map for more information on the existing sections of trail, as well as the online...

Lake Accotink Trail

VA - 4.5 miles

In Northern Virginia's suburban community of Springfield, Lake Accotink Park provides a wilderness escape amid the city surroundings. The 500-acre park features picnic areas, miniature golf, an...

Lake Artemesia Trail

MD - 1.35 miles

The Lake Artemesia Trail—one component of the larger Anacostia Tributary Trail System—completely encircles its scenic eponymous lake in Prince George's County, Maryland. The trail is also a great...

Hanover Trolley Trail

PA - 3.5 miles

The Hanover Trolley Trail is being built along the 16-mile corridor of the York-Hanover Trolley Line that ran between the two cities in the early 1900s. Currently, about a quarter of that distance is...

Rock Creek Park Trails

DC - 8.5 miles

Closure Notice: Beginning March 31, 2021, DDOT and the NPS will be working on a construction project that will impact much of the southern segment of the trail (between M Street and Broad Branch Road...

Cross County Trail (VA)

VA - 40 miles

The Cross County Trail is a multi-use trail that generally follows the various stream valleys in Fairfax County, Virginia. It is officially named the Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail in recognition...

Stony Run Trail

MD - 2.9 miles

Baltimore’s Stony Run Trail follows an old Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad line through nearly 3 miles of wooded stream valleys and small parks, providing a quiet escape from the hustle and bustle...

Savage Mill Trail

MD - 1 miles

The Savage Mill Trail in Savage Park travels along the rolling Patuxent River through the grounds of an old cotton mill. In the early 1800s, Savage was a major manufacturing center, harnessing power...

WB&A Trail

MD - 13.1 miles

Central Maryland's WB&A Trail occupies the former Washington, Baltimore & Annapolis Electric Railway corridor—hence its name—for its entire route. The railroad operated electric commuter trains...

Great American Rail-Trail

DC,IA,ID,IL,IN,MD,MT,NE,OH,PA,WA,WV,WY - 3743.9 miles

Note: This developing route is not yet fully contiguous – it is just over 50% complete. Please refer to the Trail Map for more information on the existing sections of trail, as well as the online...

Bluemont Junction Trail

VA - 1.3 miles

The Bluemont Junction Trail is a short paved trail that branches off from the popular Washington and Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) in the heart of Arlington. The trail was built on a spur line that once...

Mount Vernon Trail

VA - 18 miles

The 18-mile Mount Vernon Trail is one of the Washington, D.C. Metro area's most popular trails. Just across the Potomac River from D.C. in Virginia, the trail links Theodore Roosevelt Island Park with...

Stony Run Trail

MD - 2.9 miles

Baltimore’s Stony Run Trail follows an old Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad line through nearly 3 miles of wooded stream valleys and small parks, providing a quiet escape from the hustle and bustle...

Accordion

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail

MD - 19.7 miles

The Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail is one of the best hiking and biking trails in the Mid-Atlantic region. It allows for nearly 20 miles of flat travel, punctuated by a number of access points and an...

WB&A Trail

MD - 13.1 miles

Central Maryland's WB&A Trail occupies the former Washington, Baltimore & Annapolis Electric Railway corridor—hence its name—for its entire route. The railroad operated electric commuter trains...

Indian Head Rail Trail

MD - 13.4 miles

Located just 18 miles south of our nation's capital, the Indian Head Rail Trail offers a unique natural outdoor experience, seemingly far removed from urban development and its associated chaotic...

Hanover Trolley Trail

PA - 3.5 miles

The Hanover Trolley Trail is being built along the 16-mile corridor of the York-Hanover Trolley Line that ran between the two cities in the early 1900s. Currently, about a quarter of that distance is...

Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway Trail

MD - 2.5 miles

Maryland's Susquehanna State Park is recognized for challenging hiking and biking trails, camping facilities, rock outcroppings, boating, a museum and restored historical sites. But none of these...

Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park

DC,MD - 184.5 miles

Following the Potomac River, the C&O Canal Towpath traverses the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park for 184.5 miles between Georgetown in Washington, D.C., and Cumberland, Maryland. For...

Cross County Trail (VA)

VA - 40 miles

The Cross County Trail is a multi-use trail that generally follows the various stream valleys in Fairfax County, Virginia. It is officially named the Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail in recognition...

Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail

MD,VA - 3.3 miles

The Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail provides a superb link between Alexandria, VA, and Maryland's National Harbor over the Potomac River. This well-used trail crosses on the up-river side of the bridge...

Lake Accotink Trail

VA - 4.5 miles

In Northern Virginia's suburban community of Springfield, Lake Accotink Park provides a wilderness escape amid the city surroundings. The 500-acre park features picnic areas, miniature golf, an...

Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park

MD - 2.5 miles

The Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park course for 2.5 miles through the heavily wooded park between Ilchester Road and Lost Lake. The trail is gentle and wheelchair accessible. It passes...

Washington and Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park (W&OD)

VA - 45 miles

The Washington & Old Dominion Trail (W&OD) is one of suburban Washington, D.C.'s most popular rail-trails. The heavily used trail is frequented by commuters and recreationists alike, and is a...

H & F Trolley Trail

MD - 0.72 miles

Sitting on the corner of East Main Street and Alley 5 in Thurmont is a green and white one-story building. Murals decorate its walls, depicting the history of the famous Hagerstown and Frederick...

Rock Creek Park Trails

DC - 8.5 miles

Closure Notice: Beginning March 31, 2021, DDOT and the NPS will be working on a construction project that will impact much of the southern segment of the trail (between M Street and Broad Branch Road...

B&A Trail

MD - 13.3 miles

If you are looking to augment your physical workout with some intellectual exercise, look no further than the Baltimore & Annapolis Trail. The scenic, paved, 13-mile community trail is brimming with...

Savage Mill Trail

MD - 1 miles

The Savage Mill Trail in Savage Park travels along the rolling Patuxent River through the grounds of an old cotton mill. In the early 1800s, Savage was a major manufacturing center, harnessing power...

Lake Artemesia Trail

MD - 1.35 miles

The Lake Artemesia Trail—one component of the larger Anacostia Tributary Trail System—completely encircles its scenic eponymous lake in Prince George's County, Maryland. The trail is also a great...

Recent Trail Reviews

Savage Mill Trail

Great trail, nice and shady, and easy on the paws for your furry friends! Lots of side trails to explore and get down to the river to splash around.

May, 2022 by danielle.stcyr

Great trail, nice and shady, and easy on the paws for your furry friends! Lots of side trails to explore and get down to the river to splash around.

Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park

C&O round trip

May, 2022 by andybeaire56

We did from Cumberland to DC then from DC back to Cumberland! August 2021 hot as hades in the high 90’s and thunderstorms! Had a blast! Camped the entire way except for 1 day at motel lol needed a shower! Awesome experience with a huge tunnel that we had to walk our bikes through like a mile ! Rode all over the DC area and visited many places ! DC is very bike friendly!

Mount Vernon Trail

One and done!!

May, 2022 by debbieotr

Was not really impressed with this trail, in need of a lot of repairs. Asphalt raised up causing large bumps messing up your bike, old boardwalks with loose boards and splintered wood. Sadly I have to compare it to a “ Park” anywhere! Only able to see the Washington monument from a distance

Accordion

Heritage Rail Trail County Park

Gliches along the way

May, 2022 by bbladen

I road this trail today. The first item of note is the road is closed about 1 mile on the North Extension, that is a mile North of Route 30. You can ride from John Rudy County park to the closure. There may be a work around at the railroad bridge to the route 30 Parking lot. I started at the route 30 parking lot and went South to New Freedom. I would not recommend riding in this direction. The last section from about MP 5 up to New Freedom is uphill about a 6% grade. It is best to ride starting in New Freedom and biking to York. Also, The bike trail through York going South is a bit confusing through the town. At one point the RR track area was closed; however, the detour South was not clear. Okay

Capital Crescent Trail

The Maryland Goto for a Scenic Bike Ride

April, 2022 by ml14

They allow ebikes as long as one observes the speed limits and rides courteously. Being able to ride to the Mall in DC and back is great exercise too. Path users are courteous and the Pedego Ebike Rental Shop is great when you have guests who want to join you. Bethesda food is a nice reward after the ride too. A favorite trail!

Northeast Branch Trail

Es un sendero poco transitado, con tramos muy hermosos. Disfrute muchísimos caminarlo.

April, 2022 by atala_ch

Es un sendero poco transitado, con tramos muy hermosos. Disfrute muchísimos caminarlo.

Anacostia River Trail

Tranquilo y sencillo para caminar. El estar junto al río hace muy grata la caminata o paseo en bici.

April, 2022 by atala_ch

Tranquilo y sencillo para caminar. El estar junto al río hace muy grata la caminata o paseo en bici.

Mount Vernon Trail

One of America's most beautiful and worst-maintained trails

April, 2022 by bikeridesandbreweries

I live only blocks from this trail and I've been riding it sporadically for over 30 years. But each year, I ride it less often (maybe twice a summer?) and I get more and more frustrated by it. Only yards from the wide Potomac River most of the way, with inspiring views of the DC monuments, a string of lovely parks, and winding wooden boardwalks through the marshes, it really is stunning. The large number of pedestrians, joggers and other bikers on it at any given time is testament to its popularity. But therein lies the danger for bikers, especially: between tourists and others who have no idea of trail courtesy or safety, most rides include lots of screeching halts, unheeded calls of "ON YOUR LEFT!" and frightening encounters around blind turns. Then there are the untold number of root heaves that rattle bike and bones. These are the worst I've seen on any trail in America and make for white-knuckled and jarring rides. This 15-mile trail is so popular and pretty, it should have been widened and repaved by the National Park Service a decade ago. Bikers and walkers alike should be sadly wary of this national treasure.

Mount Airy Rail-Trail

Parked only to find a trail closed sign and some construction equipment on it. This is the center street end. The park end was blocked due to a long line of cars for a recycle event.

April, 2022 by mdwynnes

Parked only to find a trail closed sign and some construction equipment on it. This is the center street end. The park end was blocked due to a long line of cars for a recycle event.

Northwest Branch Trail

NOT a bike trail throughout

March, 2022 by rcoxdc

Starting at the south end, it's really quite a nice ride -- a paved surface in fairly reasonable shape, well-marked with a red centerline to help you find your way, winding through a mix of suburban and wooded areas as you make your way upstream.

But between NH Ave and the Beltway the paving ends quite suddenly. Despite the markings on the map, the paving does NOT pick back up again. If you have a pretty serious mountain bike with aggressive tires -- and an interest in wearing yourself out -- you might be able to keep going.

The map says this is a 7 mile trip. That may well be the case for the pavement, but the map then shows the trail goes on up to Wheaton and Layhill. The written description notes it's closed to bikes, but the map seems to suggest otherwise.

Maybe this trail should be broken into two parts to avoid confusion for folks like me! The hiking part is pretty rugged but quite beautiful . . .

Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail

A rail-trail with a train and gnomes

March, 2022 by bikeridesandbreweries

The National Central Railroad Trail (aka Torrey C. Brown Tail) runs north-south and connects Hunt Valley, Maryland with York, Pennsylvania. It is approximately 45 miles in length and the terrain is completely flat. Once in Pennsylvania, the trail becomes the Heritage Rail Trail County Park. The NCR runs next to the Big Gunpowder Falls River and there are a fair number of rest stops with bathroom facilities, as well as benches and picnic tables, along the way.
There are numerous places to enjoy the river’s beautiful views and the sounds of rushing water. If you are hungry and want to stop, there are cafés in Monkton, MD, New Freedom and Glen Rock, Pa. Trail highlights include the Howard Tunnel, the NCR Train (a real old-timey train that follows the same route that carried President Lincoln to Gettysburg where he delivered his address) and smaller two-person rail cars on the tracks. Additionally, there are bridges, beautiful corn and wheat fields and mile after mile of actual active railroad tracks. And, at the 11-mile mark north from Hunt Valley, there is Gnome Hill, a 10-foot high hill with hundreds of garden gnomes to check out. There is also a water and snack station at Gnome Hill. (Just watch out for deer crossing there.)
The trail is very well shaded and consists of a mix of crushed limestone and hard dirt. Even on 90-degree days, the temperature on the trial is extremely tolerable. Once you cross into Pennsylvania and approach York, there are large sections that are paved. The trail can be accessed from several locations with parking lots in Hunt Valley, Sparks, Monkton, Parkton, New Freedom and elsewhere. Foot traffic can be heavy on the weekends particularly between Hunt Valley and Sparks, and again North of Monkton for two miles.
There is a popular brewery not far from the trail in Parkton, MD.

B&A Trail

Baltimore & Annapolis plus the BWI loop

March, 2022 by bikeridesandbreweries

The Baltimore and Annapolis Trail plus the BWI Trail are two distinct trails that connect at the northwestern trailhead of the Baltimore and Annapolis Trail via the John Overstreet Connector. So, back and forth to Annapolis is about 28 miles, then the loop around the Baltimore Washington International (BWI) Thurgood Marshal airport is another 10.5 miles.
We headed southeast on the Baltimore and Annapolis Trail, first alongside a runway (the parking lot is actually called the Thomas A. Dixon Observation Park) and then into the woods. For the next mile or so, we zigzagged through the forest until we came to a road sign that required us to stop and read it carefully. After crossing a highway bridge, we rode for the next 13 miles through a variety of settings.
There were many picturesque parts of the gently rolling trail: split-rail wooden fences along mowed grass aprons and large “mounds” of vine-covered trees. In many areas, the trail ran along the edges of well-kept neighborhoods where there were frequent, but not busy, intersections. Almost imperceptibly, the trail declined towards Annapolis – a fact we were only made aware of as we climbed back towards BWI. At about the 10-mile mark, we saw many bikers and runners stopped at a popular trailside coffee shop in Severna Park. This is the most convenient place to fill up on water or snacks. Next to it was an enormous pile of discarded bikes behind Pedal Pushers bike store.
After a few more miles of the quiet, mostly shaded trail, we reached the Annapolis trailhead then turned around. Thirteen or so miles later, we arrived back at the Observation Park and forced ourselves to do the BWI loop. Surprisingly, the BWI trail was NOT a tour of parking lots, airport hangars and shade-less runways. It was actually pretty in many spots and had an interesting array of vistas ranging from forests, to horse pastures, to overlooks of the airport, to neighborhoods, to highways. This is a very popular loop and one local biker told us that there were too many pedestrians to ride on the weekends.
Ireland’s most famous brewery has its only US brewery near BWI and it is both massive and a ton of fun.

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