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Lakeside and Muncaster Mill Trail

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Rock Creek Regional Park

Lakeside and Muncaster Mill Trail is a 3.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Derwood, Maryland that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 3.3 miles Elevation Gain: 239 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

forest

lake

partially paved

wild flowers

wildlife

Scenic Lake and Stream, Easy Hike The trail follows the shoreline of the lake for the most part. From the parking lot, locate a trail to the left of the nature center. It starts right by the information sign, where you may be able to pick up a trail map of all trails in the park. Follow the short trail down the hill to the stream bed and turn right on the Sleepy Hollow trail. Follow this trail along the stream and after it leaves the stream, turn left on the Big Pines trail. Follow this a short distance to the Lakeside trail. Follow the lakeside trail until in meets an asphalt trail. Turn left and cross the dam. Follow the asphalt until in comes into and old parking area. Tranverse this to a unused road at the far end. Follow the road, bearing left, where another road runs off to the right. The road will end at another old parking a and the dirt trail picks up at the back. Follow the trail until you see the stream crossing with a sign for the nature center. Cross and return to start.

This is a beautiful trail with wildlife and a beautiful lake. However, we were unable to find where it looped back to the nature center and had to walk all the way to Muncaster Mill Road and double back on the other side of the creek to get back to our car. Turned a 3.5 mile walk into a 5 mile walk...fine for me, but hard on the boy.

hiking
15 days ago

Great trail! Very scenic and has lots of wild life!

hiking
23 days ago

If you do the loop, I would recommend going counter clockwise as you will do the more boring, paved part first. At the turnaround point, you have to go up and walk along the shoulder of Muncaster Mill Rd to cross the river and then go to the other leg of the trail. If you just want the more beautiful wooded part, you can start clockwise and then turn around at the road to come back the same way.

hiking
24 days ago

Great for a family hike, kid-friendly. Old Nasty Trail was a nice way to increase intensity and boost cardio. Hanging vines added excitement. Beautiful scenery. Lots of fallen trees.

hiking
1 month ago

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hiking
1 month ago

Nice day for hiking. It’s easy to follow. Nearby creek not too many people out there

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

Very fun for the kids and dogs. Lots of nice green natural scenery with lake and water stream and easy to follow trail. Just follow the light blue marks on the trees.

recorded Recording - May 26, 06:26 PM

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike. Just a couple of things to note; 1) the trail along the west side of the lake from the SW parking lot up to the 1st water crossing is an all natural path. 2) the trail along the Eastern side of the lake & around the bottom is either paved or hard-packed gravel. And much more heavily traveled. 3) there is a 2nd unmarked water crossing at the Sunfish Trail junction. We parked in the lot at the SW corner. If we do this hike again we would just do an out & back along the natural trail, as I do not like paved paths.

walking
bugs
muddy
1 month ago

good walk

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

Great trail with beautiful views and tons of greenery.

There's a large fallen tree that can be used to cross the river during high tide (climbing difficulty moderate).

hiking
washed out
2 months ago

Very idyllic in the first part which is a pure hiking trail and unpaved. Lots of floral scent. Gets a bit more crowded once it’s paved. Very little adherence to face masks here. The crossing at the beginning /end of the loop is a true wet crossing - would advise not to do this hike shortly after it rained because you’ll be walking through calf-depth water.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

Deer, ducklings and squirrels at dusk; gorgeous.

hiking
2 months ago

This was a really fun hike. We left from the nature center and went around the lake counterclockwise. Our toddler did pretty much the entire trail on the balance bike. It was nice to have the paved part towards the end as we were getting tired. There are multiple spots along the way to stop and enjoy the lake a little. Would highly recommend this trail.

hiking
2 months ago

Good 3+ mile loop with dog and kids. There is a creek crossing for fun as well.

My favorite trail yet!

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. I would recommend going counter clockwise if you’re going to do the full loop. That way you start off with the “less interesting” scenery, and then the second half is all great and very secluded in the woods.

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

Turns out, no biking on the portion I did, didn’t see the warning until I met with the paved trail. Rode the paved portion back to the start. LOTS of roots, rock outcropping, and steep ups & downs.

Good trail, easy, mostly flat. Wet crossing is hard with dogs.

hiking
muddy
5 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

A very small, easy hike. Liked the fact that there was hardly anyone on the trail. Quite and tranquil. Here is my trip 5 min video https://youtu.be/0UCNKLJqVpE

hiking
9 months ago

Trail is in great condition, one fallen tree that you have to go over but all in all a very good hike.

hiking
10 months ago

It’s a nice and easy trail. Lots of others trails branch off this trail. Have your map on your smartphone loaded and handy.

Apple Watch counted 3.59 to go around the lake etc. The kids loved it

hiking
11 months ago

Great trail to hike after work. You can park at the Meadowside Nature Center. The trail begins to the left of it; just follow the sign To Rocky Ridge Trail. It’s an easy hike with part of the trail paved by the damn side. Met up with just a handful of people, some just walking their dog. Nice, easy hike.

Fun trail, lots of forks, beware of the wet crossing of going with children.

hiking
Sat Jun 01 2019

The lake is beautiful, but the trail is hard to stay on if your phone dies. Also all the signs not to go in the water are concerning considering you can stay on the path without going through water.

running
Wed Apr 17 2019

Only downside is pavement on southeast side. Other than that, ideal trail running conditions.

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