hiking

forest

walking

nature trips

views

birding

trail running

dogs on leash

river

wildlife

mountain biking

kid friendly

wild flowers

waterfall

fishing

horseback riding

dog friendly

Patapsco Valley State Park encapsulates 32 miles of the Patapsco River, and more than 16,000 acres of protected land with eight developed recreational areas in Frederick and Carroll counties. Extremely popular with mountain bikers and hikers, Patapsco State Park's Recreational opportunities include 190 miles of hiking trails, fishing, swimming, canoeing, horseback riding and mountain biking, as well as picnicking and camping for individuals or large groups.

hiking
1 day ago

Nice cool breeze this evening. I started at the NEW trail (Ridge Extension) across the road from the Playground parking lot. The trail was recently completed. The old way up was the Ridge (Waterbars) trail that is always washed out, rocky and tons of roots. I hiked the Ridge trail up to the shelter bench then came down an old trail to River road, then hiked back. This loop can be hiked in different directions. You could also hike the Valley View because it heads the same way. It's nicer in the winter because of the views. Many biker and hiker on trail this evening. Less of a crowd weekdays and evenings.

nice, easy hike. poorly marked in places. recommend downloading the map.

road biking
3 days ago

With rain all yesterday evening I stayed off the muddy trails. Today, I did a little biking around the park roads. Once a month I go up and check on the Bloede Dam removal project. Today, they we jack-hammering the concrete to remove the fish ladders. The dam is scheduled to be removed this September. The Grist Mill trail is CLOSED and will be for the rest of this year. You can now walk on the Swinging Bridge and look at the river but it's CLOSED on the Baltimore County side. The DNR has now created a wooden door on the opposite side of the bridge.

Amazing views . Parts are challenging especially to beginners . But awesome landscapes

It was a nice hike, well paved. I did get lost a few times and had to backtrack but otherwise it was fun.

** MESSAGE REGARDING CLOSURES **: The Soapstone Trail heading up to S. Rolling Rd. is OPEN but there are detours which places you on the new Star Struck trail. The Inner Soapstone is CLOSED. The Vineyard Trail is CLOSED.
The Santee Branch trail is OPEN but you have to access it via the Bike Jumper from the top end of Bull Run Trail. These three trails are the only ones OPEN on the Glen Artney side of the park which is the Baltimore County side. The Lost Lake parking lot and Grist Mill trail have been totally damaged from all the recent floods.
Your best option is to enjoy the Howard County side of the Park. When entering Avalon section turn left towards the Playground. Plenty of trails on this side. I have trail maps I created if you need help. baltoken@yahoo.com

This trail is currently closed until further notice.

hiking
13 days ago

It was a nice trail, very easy. Parking is along the road as somebody mentioned. I came the morning after a week of rain so I was one of 2 cars when I got there, a few more when I was done. I did have to cross a stream twice and the time it was rather wide, but that was kind of fun. When I got to Cascade Falls, it was beautiful, but I was disappointed to see a bunch of trash right at the base of the falls. This made pictures difficult. If I had my suit with me I would have gotten in and picked it up. Overall a nice walk after a week of not being able to do anything.

Awesome trail, but poorly marked. I got lost and had to back track twice. Aside from that the trail is beautiful and the burgers at the Woodstock Inn are amazing.

hiking
16 days ago

*** FLOOD CONDITIONS ON THE BALTIMORE. COUNTY. SIDE ***
Today, I hiked the park road on one side of the park heading to the Glen Artney side of the Avalon section. - My pictures depict the damage on that side. - Only a few trails on that side are OPEN. - You can drive up to the Soapstone trail head and hike your way up to S. Rolling Rd. but the trail has a few detours. - The Inner Soapstone trail along Glen Artney Rd. is CLOSED. The Bull Run trail is also OPEN. - If you park up at the Fire Rd. you can hike the Santee towards the Hilton Area but trails leading to the Grist Mill are CLOSED. - The 2-mile Grist Mill trail is CLOSED and will be for the rest of the year. - All the footbridges are washed away. - The parking lot at the Lost Lake Pond is CLOSED. - It was a iffy day with the weather so I hiked the road knowing I could take shelter if needed. - The skies looked bad but the rain never came. - The ( Left ) Howard County side is ALL OPEN. Enjoy !!

This is one of my fave Patapsco trails. It’s nice taking the Sawmill part under the train tracks and heading over to the water, but there’s always a lot of kind of gross people like swimming in the water when it’s warm out. I love going up the Buzzards portion of the trail because it’s straight uphill and a sick glute workout. I would not take my dogs on the Buzzards hill... but they are pugs and puggles. Buzzards has a few nice rock cliff situations that you can stop and have a snack on. I find this trail to be very lightly trafficked.

Cool trail, but I found it extremely heavily trafficked. I felt like I was on some kind of tour. There was always someone right in front or behind you. I did go on a Sunday during the summer, so perhaps it wouldn’t be so busy during fall. There were a lot of kids in the water, and honestly I felt like a tourist. The trail was very dog friendly for active dogs. There were a lot of spots for me to veer off trail and take tasteful nude Instagram photos.

hiking
17 days ago

Nice trail but the parking is simply on the side of Landing Rd and it was beautiful today, so it was hard to find a spot to park and it was a bit crowded, but the upside is it's easy to see why people like this trail. This was a hit with my kids and judging by the number of families with kids, I'm not surprised.

The Avalon Section of the Patapsco Valley State Park has reopening. The Howard County side is still your best option. Only the Soapstone trail is open on the Baltimore County side. Today, the park was super crowded again. Weekend Mad House. I HIKED up to the dam via the old River Rd. trail which is all flat The dam will be removed this September. I also HIKED the Bike Buster and Cascade Trail. They are becoming very rocky due to all the wash out from the recently storms. The upper Garrett's Pass along the ridge is still your best option if you want to avoid the crowded Cascade Falls.

19 days ago

Pleasant, short hike. There were severe storms all week so the trail was a little muddy in some spots. A few parts a bit overgrown due to time of year. Saw no others on the trail, but a few couples at dam. Dam was impressive due to high volume of water coming over from the storms. Would visit again.

My family and I love this trail. The trail is clearly marked and the waterfall is beautiful. Lots of hill and streams to cross so it feels like a real hike.

amazing view and beautiful walk

hiking
26 days ago

Today, I thought I could beat the rainstorm and hike when the Park opened. I LOST. Here's the cool thing. With all the leaves on the old growth trees it took a little time before the trails got muddy. Sure glad I carry a backpack all the time. One item in my pack is always a Poncho but you end up getting wet just from sweating. Great when it cold out but not when it's hot. I hiked up the New Ridge Extension and follow the old Ridge trail. When the rain got worse I jumped on the Valley View trail and headed back. As I doubled back, I should have taking the old Stone road down to River Rd. because the New freshly cut Ridge Extension trail became very slippery on my way down. Item number two: Thank God I always carry Trekking Poles or I would have gotten a muddy backside. I was always worrying about getting wet and as soon as I got home ( I TOOK A SHOWER ).

MESSAGE ALERT REGARDING TRAILS:
The Glen Artney road up to the main trailhead of the Soapstone is NOW OPEN. The Pond area and the Grist Mill trail is shot and will be CLOSED for the rest of the summer. The stream at the Soapstone Trailhead is now about 30 feet wide. Stones have been put in place for you to cross. This section will be very bad if it's raining. There are many DETOURS on the trail right now. Due to storm damage the main section of trails is CLOSED. You now have to hike up the Alt. Soapstone ( Star Struck ) which is on the right side. The trails is in great condition but it is steeper then the original. Not very wide so beware of bikes. At the top of S. Rolling Rd. the main trail has a lot of washed out. It's CLOSED. Right now you have to return the same way you went up. Caution tape ever where !! I crossed the tape on the bypass trail and it was fine. Not sure why it was blocked off. Bull Run is OPEN but all trails connecting to the Grist Mill are CLOSED.

PS. All the INNER Soapstone trails around the restroom and Glen Artney are CLOSED.

MESSAGE ALERT REGARDING TRAILS:
The Glen Artney road up to the main trailhead of the Soapstone is NOW OPEN. The Pond area and the Grist Mill trail is shot and will be CLOSED for the rest of the summer. The stream at the Soapstone Trailhead is now about 30 feet wide. Stones have been put in place for you to cross. This section will be very bad if it's raining. There are many DETOURS on the trail right now. Due to storm damage the main section of trails is CLOSED. You now have to hike up the Alt. Soapstone ( Star Struck ) which is on the right side. The trails is in great condition but it is steeper then the original. Not very wide so beware of bikes. At the top of S. Rolling Rd. the main trail has a lot of washed out. It's CLOSED. Right now you have to return the same way you went up. Caution tape ever where !! I crossed the tape on the bypass trail and it was fine. Not sure why it was blocked off. Bull Run is OPEN but all trails connecting to the Grist Mill are CLOSED.

PS. All the INNER Soapstone trails around the restroom and Glen Artney are CLOSED.

on Avalon Loop Trail

hiking
26 days ago

Are there snakes and/or bees this time of year?

trail running
27 days ago

Please remove the protruding blowdown at 39.23987, -76.74987 — it is a true hazard and someone could get hurt. Otherwise, 5 stars.

Completed: 07/19/2018

hiking
29 days ago

Nice after work hike. Nice views of the river. Saw a snake.

hiking
29 days ago

Took the family on this hike and we enjoyed it. We never saw the cover photo, however, we were able to cross a nice stream a few times. Some of the trail were a bit overgrown and not well marked. After the field we followed the well worn footpath back to our starting point. We crossed a few hikers on there way out towards the field who said their path overgrown as well. All in all a good 3 mile hike.

This was our 1st hike in Patapsco Valley State Park and we loved it. The path from Landing road was easy to find. The waterfall was cool and offered a nice resting & refuel waypoint. After we crossed the waterfall we completed the loop which offered a few nice elevation changes. We had to follow the GPS to complete the loop, we had to back track twice to stay on the correct trail.

walking
1 month ago

Easy and short trail but there are 1-2 steep areas where heavier set individuals may have trouble with footing.

Great hike with the kids! Tons of stop off points. Front end is more entertaining than the back end. Though the back end is definitely less trafficked.

trail running
1 month ago

Ran a segment of the Avalon Loop Trail. Great trail for running, but watch out for bikers!

This segment is one of my go-to courses for training and mile repeats. 4 miles total.

Completed: 07/15/2018

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