Mckeldin Area Trail

HARD 57 reviews

Mckeldin Area Trail is a 16.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Marriottsville, Maryland that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
16.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,755 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

backpacking

birding

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

A very rewarding hike, both physically and mentally as you explore the history of these ghost towns that exist inside the state park. Start your hike from the ample parking lot with picnic shelters and restrooms. The paved road ends at the rapids overlook, and continues to our stream immersion crossing. The stream crossing is an easy one, look for the horse entry point and go up a little for an easier route. Less than knee-deep water and you are on the other side--then look for the trail and resume your journey. The trail approximately follows the railroad tracks but deviates in several sections for "mud" portages up into the hills. It crosses under a freeway road with plenty of local graffiti artists known here. Continuing along to your approximate half way point (to the cemetery and ruins) you will find two markers, one is a pipeline marker, then overhead power lines. Further down the trail you will cross over a small rail bridge, with a nice tributary fishing spot, at this point you have to cross over to the other side of the tracks and look for the trail. Pass the old car graveyard with a nice selection of very old cars. The next landmark is the dam--with a lot of artifacts in this area. Go under the rail bridge (active rail) and continue on. The rail crosses to Daniels which has an active manufacturing company located there. This is also another entry point for the hike. Past the rail bridge, you will see an old car on the left (60's blue) far off in the distance, and a Presbyterian church ruins (which is newer construction). Continuing past the church ruins, you will encounter a better road trail, and look for the trail on the left going up the hill. Continuing up this side trail look for the netted rocks which is the entry point for the St. Stanislaus Kotska Catholic Church location. The church has a small cemetery right next to it. Please do not disturb the stones as this is state protected property and is within the state park boundary. You will see the dates on the stones from 1920-1930's. St. Stanislaus Church was founded in 1879, and this stone building was erected shortly afterward. The church's priest used to skate down the river from Woodstock when the river was frozen during the winter months. The stone structure was struck by lightning in the 1920s, and a wooden structure was built nearby and used until the town of Daniels was bulldozed in the late 1960s. The two ghost towns here are named Alberton/Daniels mill town.

9 days ago

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

4 months ago

Hiked this trail with my brother two summers ago. Aside from choosing an unbearably humid day, the hike was enjoyable and not too taxing. We're planning to use this section for a point to point hike from Mckeldin in to Ellicott City.

11 months ago

nice hike... a lot of up hill.

hiking
11 months ago

(Outing performed August 6, 2017; late review, see recorded track).

I actually hiked about 22 miles due to getting lost on a poorly marked trail. In the beginning the trail is well marked, but the farther you go on this 16-17 miler out n' back the less well marked it is. What happened was my GPS/smartphone's battery died out at about mile 13 -- lesson learned for me -- at a point where the trail was not well marked. With half dozen designated and undesignated intersecting trails at this point it was not good. I ended up hiking 3-4 miles the wrong way due to confusing tree markings and had to come back. Ran out of water when severe chaffing came on, and I was approaching dusk -- when the park closes. Ended up exiting not at the point I began, but about 1/2 mile removed. Lesson learned for me: hiking or trail running, any course over 12 miles on hard terrain requires a backup phone or charger, flashlight, mini first aid kit, and marking tape in case a poorly marked segment on a confusing course is encountered. When I started out, parking area was moderately full, when I finally got back, my vehicle was the only one there. Without question this was a challenging 16-mile course with stream crossings, but the poor markings almost made it a nightmare, making it a 3-star course, although I may do this trail again with better preparedness.

hiking
Wednesday, June 14, 2017

wooded trail along with river
several good spot to take a break during walking

mountain biking
Monday, May 08, 2017

Super fast and rocky but overall very fun

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Be sure to allow at least 8 hours. Parking near Woodstock Rd is suggested to save time.

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Great trail, beautiful river. Can't wait to go back to do some more exploring!

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Monday, February 06, 2017

Is this the same trail that you can park on Alberton and Daniel road. Then, keep walking past the church ruins and the Daniels Dam eventually taking you to the McKeldon area?

hiking
Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Love this trail. Awesome scenery

hiking
Sunday, January 01, 2017

Nice series of trails, especially the rapids trail. Could use a bit more signage, but it's not hard to find your way around. Would definitely go back!

hiking
Sunday, September 11, 2016

awesome trail. a bit confusing, but if you follow the white markers all the way , you'll be perfect. really beautiful. good workout!

hiking
Sunday, September 11, 2016

Fun ruins.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Very poorly marked could not follow this route. Had to mix the trails into one long one. Did not get to see any of the ruins or history. Very bummed.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

We had a great time in the McKeldin area. The McKeldin rapids area is great.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

5 stars for terrific ruins and history!

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
12 days ago

hiking
14 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

mountain biking
3 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

Load More