Looking for a great trail in Catoctin Mountain Park, Maryland? AllTrails has 16 great hiking trails, trail running trails, forest trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 9 moderate trails in Catoctin Mountain Park ranging from 2.1 to 8.6 miles and from 915 to 1,653 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!




dogs on leash


nature trips

bird watching

kid friendly


trail running


Catoctin's diverse cultural resources provide several vignettes of our nation's history in one small location. Native Americans quarried rhyolite for the production of lithic tools. A charcoal and iron industry is still visible today, along with smaller industries including farms, sawmills, and an old moonshine still. Historic structures and products of the Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps, along with the site of our nation's first Job Corps Center, are tangible reminders of the capability of vigorous youth programs to strengthen the nation's economic and social fabric. The totality of resources found in Catoctin Mountain Park reflects much of the early fabric of our country. An Historic Resource Study was conducted in March 2000 by Dr. Edmund Werlhe and is available on line for your reference. Catoctin Mountain Park, An Administrative History by Barbara Kirkconnell, February 1988. 578KB, word document. For more information about archeology in Catoctin Mountain Park see http://www.nps.gov/rap/archeology/spotlight_CATO.htm and in the Washington, D.C. area see http://www.nps.gov/rap/.

When u start this trail head towards to falls first. You'll thank me. Dogs ok on a leash.
copy and paste link for a trail preview


Turned out to be a great day for a hike. The recent snow then warm weather made the Falls quite impressive. The hike as posted on AllTrails appears to be inaccurate or needs updating. The Nature Trail is in Catoctin Mountain Park run by the National Park service. Dogs are allowed on leash. The map on All Trails also appears to be inaccurate. There is no way to cross over into Cunningham Falls State Park to do the upper Falls loop shown on the All Trails map so the actual Falls nature trail hike is around 4.6 miles. It has a significant change in elevation along the first mile and a half that makes it feel more like a moderate level of difficulty. The Blue Still additional side trail that has an old still and signs that describe the history of Frederick county’s largest illegal still operation and is worth the extra half mile.

3rd Feb 2019, did a lovely 7km trail run with our dogs. well marked and used paths. clear maps. quite rocky and steep at sections but nothing unmanageable. lots of melting snow made it a little slippery at sections so grip on your shoes is needed. such helpful staff too at visitor centre. will be back.

13 days ago

Awesome hike for newbies, not too far but with enough incline to make the overlooks very rewarding!

13 days ago

19 days ago

completed on January 27th. Some nice views at the 2 rocks. not too pretty right now since there isnt any green, but the snow made up for it. trail was very icy in a lot of spots, most of which had easy bypasses to avoid the ice. one stretch however did not really have any way to avoid the ice. I would not attempt this trail during the winter, or after snow if you aren't comfortable with ice. other than that, not a very difficult trail. our 4 year old daughter did the whole loop with our help through the icy patch. All in all a nice day and perfect difficulty for our daughter.

Wonderful overlook

Traffic wasn’t too bad. Not a lot of parking though. Very muddy at some points. My GPS tracked 4.07 miles.

1/6/19: This hike was a great break from being in D.C. There is a lot to see in a relatively close proximity. I hiked counterclockwise starting with Chimney Rock and saving Cunningham Falls for last. There’s a nice bench at the Thurmont Vista for lunch and the trails are very clearly marked. I took a few side excursions and and walked all the way around Wolf Rock and ended with 11.3 miles total. Parts of the trail was extremely crowded, while the stretch between Thurmont Vista and Blue Ridge Summit Vista was empty. There is one restroom at the Hog Rock parking area along with picnic tables. The only two draw backs are crossing the road to get to Cunningham Falls and front side of the trails follows along the road. The short .5 miles stroll to the Blue Blazes Moonshine Still has an outstanding story to go along with it.

I loved it. Great views. Therapeutic.

It is not to hard even for me and I’m 10 years old I want to find one a little harder

2 months ago

Easy trail. The falls are crowded in the summer. When you loop back, you see some nice boulders.

The trail is beautiful and hits two great points of interest on the way to Chimney Rock, but definitely falls on the easier side of moderate and is one of the shorter routes in Catocin park. Those looking for a challenge should check out other trail routes, but anyone looking to pack a lot of great trail features into a shorter distance will love it.

We were visiting Gettysburg and found this trail via AllTrails app. Was a great Spring hike.

A pretty casual hike. A bit busy sometimes. Kids loved it.

We walked counter-clockwise from the visitors center and saw the falls first, then hog rock, and then we turned south on the yellow trail before reaching thurmont. We had a 2 and 3 yr old with us and were taking our time. We recorded 5.7 mi on the yellow loop. It was a very nice hike with beautiful views and fall colors.

Loved this hike! The trails were very well marked and signage was posted accordingly. I would rate this as moderate. I started off counter clockwise and found this helpful as I went up the rockier parts and did not have as many rocks going down. That being said it is still a rocky trail. Loved seeing chimney rock and wolf rock. I would definitely like to return.

had a fun day with some brisk walking around 10+miles (we did a little extra walking here and there) in around five hours!

Great hike clear markings
Got the hike in before the rain

Doing this counterclockwise is the best suggestion. But, don't tell anyone that isn't on AllTrails! Good, challenging hike. We did this in 6.7 miles / 3hr 43min because we did a few side excursions. Highly recommended.

4 months ago

short, easy hike. good trails for dogs. I was able to hike it easy with my baby on my back but it had it Rocky moments where I had to walk extremely slow. veiws were not great, not too much to see.

I enjoyed the beautiful boulders on this trail. The view was fine. I also love how open the forest is in this park. I need a knee replacement but walked this trail without a problem.

The hike in this trail was amazing. We started with a warm up through the Park Headquarter / Orange Trail, then climbed up to the Wolf Rock, Thurmont Vista and Chimney Rock, the view from Thurmont Vista and Chimney Rock is breathtaking.

Great hike. Loved some of the views. The markings could have been a lil better but over all would do this again.

Wonderful hike even on a foggy day, you miss some of the views but it’s an enchanting feel.

Some nice views and facilities. The trail is very well marked.

I'm docking a star only because one cannot truly summit this mountain since Camp David sits atop the peak. The trails for the most part are easy to follow. I tend to go counter-clockwise so I can save Cunningham Falls as a treat at the end. The large switchback on the White Trail is a bit tricky. Keep an eye out for the trail markers otherwise you will go a bit on a false trail that will disappear after about 1,000ft. Views from the overlooks are great. If you have the time, take the side trail, which is basically a pure scramble, to Wolf Rock for a proper view of it.

rock climbing
4 months ago

After a friend of ours bought property in the Catoctin mountains, my husband fell in love with it. Few months ago, we took a trip to Gettysburg and decided to spontaneously get tattoos. He got Chimney Rock inside his tattoo even though we have never seen it. Last weekend, we took the trail and saw it for the first time and it was breath-taking.

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