Best Easy Day Hikes Baltimore  by Heather Sanders Connellee

Best Easy Day Hikes Baltimore Guide Book

by Heather Sanders Connellee (Falcon Guides)
Best Easy Day Hikes Baltimore  by Heather Sanders Connellee
Baltimore is rich in recreation and history. Yes, it’s the birthplace of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and home to Ravens football and the Preakness Stakes. While downtown Baltimore City is made up of concrete sidewalks, row homes, high-rises, boutique shops, and trendy neighborhood restaurants and pubs, there are hidden gems of lush parks and greenways secretly placed among the hustle and bustle, just waiting to be explored. Baltimore County and surrounding counties comprise rolling hills, farmland, and vineyards offering much in the way of circumventing the cement.

© 2013 Heather Sanders Connellee/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Trails from the "Best Easy Day Hikes Baltimore" Guide Book
Displaying trails 20 of 21.

Displaying trails 1 to 20 of 21.

There is a feeling of enchantment when you know you are hiking on a portion of a 2,000-mile trail that extends from Georgia to Maine. Forty-one miles of the Appalachian Trail run through Maryland. This day hike will take you to a typical three-sided shelter and one of the trail’s amazing overlooks, Annapolis Rocks, featuring rock formations and scenic views.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 5.4
An urban hike through the heart of downtown Baltimore’s tourist center takes you past restaurants and pubs, boutique shops, attractions, and marinas. Meander through the historic town of Fells Point or continue on the trail to the Inner Harbor, Baltimore’s tourist mecca, all while enjoying the view of the water.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 4.4
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Hike past history as you follow the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal towpath and waterway. Make your way upstream on a flat, wide rail trail for stunning sights of the Potomac River. You’ll be rewarded with views of the rapid waters of Great Falls and a museum.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 4.4
A loop hike around a man-made lake in Centennial Park, Howard County, takes you over bridges, past ball fields and pavilions, and through woodlands, wetlands, and an arboretum. Home to a wide variety of wildlife, the lake is used for the conservation of various fish types.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 2.5
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Well-manicured lawns and lush landscaping with gardens and specimen trees are the backdrop for a total of 2.5 miles of trails on the arboretum grounds, combined with a museum and historic mansion. Minus the slight hum in the background of the Jones Falls Expressway, you’ll soon forget that you are in Baltimore City and be taken over by the beauty and peacefulness of the arboretum. The lush grounds of the arboretum are manicured, with open lawns for picnicking or relaxing with a blanket and a book. You are surrounded by stunning display gardens, a nature museum, and the mansion house.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.5
Start and end this loop trail with expansive views of the Chesapeake Bay and Bodkin Creek inlet. A perimeter trail takes you on a paved, curvy path along a wooded corridor through forest and marshland. It’s a great way to start and end your hike on the Perimeter Trail in Downs Memorial Park. With 236 acres, the park has many facilities including bathrooms, water fountains, dog beach, fishing pier, play- ground, and picnic area. There are a total of 5 miles of paved hiking trails and a network of natural-surface interior trails. The trailhead for the Perimeter Trail is just behind the visitor center and off to the right.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.7
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An easy trail with open meadows and water views most of the way leads you to the cliffs above the Chesapeake Bay and the Turkey Point Lighthouse at the tip of a peninsula of land between the Elk and Northeast Rivers. At the parking lot trailhead, you are immediately rewarded with water views from the cliffs above the Chesapeake Bay. This trail was formerly known as the “blue trail,” and you’ll see old blue and white blazes on the trees. But you can now follow the well-placed red marker posts on this easy, flat, and wide path that leads you to the Turkey Point Lighthouse and gift shop. One of seven trails in Elk Neck State Park, this is a popular hike, dotted with benches and a couple of picnic tables.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 2
Located in Federal Hill next to Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, this historical hike walks in the steps of our brave countrymen around the star-shaped Fort McHenry, where Francis Scott Key wrote the national anthem. The American flag waves above as you hike the Seawall Trail, a short path that circles an eighteenth-century star-shaped fort. Birthplace of the national anthem, Fort McHenry is bounded by a perimeter trail that follows along the seawall of Baltimore’s harbor, affording expansive views of the city’s waterfront and the city skyline and industrial areas.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.8
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Welcome to Jerusalem Mill Village, the home to Gunpowder Falls State Park headquarters. The mill here originally functioned as a grain mill from 1772 to 1961. The historic town buildings include a grist mill, blacksmith shop, gun shop, springhouse, and general store. This well-marked hike has much to offer, including historical sites, views of the Little Gunpowder River, and a covered bridge. A calm overwhelms you as soon as you enter the quaint and historic village of Jerusalem Mill, one of the oldest preserved mill villages in Maryland, located in Harford County. This area, rich in history, had a gun shop that supplied muskets during the early part of the Revolutionary War. Military reenactments sometimes take place here. The calm continues as you head into the woods for a nature hike. You’ll find the trailhead in the meadow behind and to the left of the Jerusalem Blacksmith Shop.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.2
While most of the 15-mile Gwynns Falls Trail is as urban as trails around Baltimore come, one section—from Leon Day Park to Windsor Mill Road—will surprise you with a thick tree canopy, river views, historical structures, and a variety of plant and animal species. The environment on the trail is a sharp contrast to the urban neighborhoods of west and southwest Baltimore City that the trail connects.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.6
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This is a place where you will want to hike your own hike. Get some exercise and an education on a total of 6 miles of trails that wrap through meadows, forest, and wetlands and pass by various gardens, exhibits, and an overlook. The self-guided nature trails located on the grounds of this environmental education center are easy to follow. For instant gratification hike the short trail to the gazebo and overlook.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.4
A mostly paved trail circles Kinder Farm Park, a 288-acre working farm with playgrounds, gardens, picnic areas, agricultural exhibits, farm animals, and a visitor center. With so much to offer, this is a great place for children and families.
Baltimore, MD - Birding,Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 2.6
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A quick and easy jaunt will lead you to the edge of the Loch Raven Reservoir, which supplies water for Baltimore City and most of Baltimore County. This trail is not heavily used and is often overgrown with tall grass. But it affords you a nice view and some solitude. Is this a trail off the beaten path or on the beaten path? It’s both, really. It’s definitely a path less traveled, hence the solitude. But it is literally a beaten path as you follow a trail of beaten grass for a good portion. It’s not terribly well maintained, but this trail to the water is a quick fix when you are looking for some peace and quiet with the reward of a nice view. Long pants are recommended due to high grass. You’ll recognize the trailhead by the orange line strung across the path.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.2
This hike is one of several trails at Oregon Ridge Nature Center. Follow a red-blazed path on natural surface through a forest of old logging trails, including a challenging ascent. It’s a peaceful hike with a pond, a beach and swimming area, and a nature center topped off with a nice overlook of Hunt Valley. You’ll feel like you are a world away when you step on the trails at Oregon Ridge Park. The land where the Oregon Ridge Nature Center now sits was an iron ore and marble mining operation during the mid-nineteenth century. The forest that once stood here during this time was clear-cut and sold for firewood. What you see now is a second-growth forest. The trails you see today were once logging roads used to drag out the trees after they were cut. The center was built in 1963 and houses displays on the history, wildlife, and environment of the park. It also has a library and gift shop.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 2.3
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This is an easy yet scenic hike along a paved rail trail, passing two swinging bridges, an old viaduct, and a dam. Following the path of the original roadbed of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, the trail parallels the river on the left and the railroad bed on the right, passing several historic sites.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 5
Hug the water’s edge of a 300-acre lake on one of several hikes on a total of 5 miles of trails. Plan to spend the day at the park enjoying facilities like boat rentals, fishing, picnicking, playgrounds, tennis courts, and a nature center.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.1
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Expect some solitude on this simple walk in the woods with sneak peeks of the Prettyboy Reservoir. The return trip includes a spur trail that ends at a scenic spot where you can take a load off and take in the waterfront view. If you are looking for solitude in a very rural setting, Prettyboy CCC trail should do the trick. It’s located in the far northwest corner of Baltimore County and is not terribly well-known. The trail follows a wide fire road path until it loops. On the return you’ll take a spur to a great spot over-looking the water, perfect for picnicking and fishing. Swimming, wading, and camping are not permitted, and boats are allowed by permit only. The trail out and the loop are not overwhelmingly scenic; the draw is the rather thick forest, the wildlife, and the peace and quiet. The highlight is on the spur trail on the return trip. If you choose, you can skip the loop portion altogether and head straight to the trail that meets the water’s edge.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.8
An unexpected urban oasis borders the Baltimore City / Baltimore County line. This park beckons you to hike the little-known trails that follow the edge of Lake Roland and an abandoned railroad bed. Get a close-up look at Lake Roland Dam and enjoy the newly renovated park grounds. After a major facelift, this 453-acre park once overrun by dogs and closed to the public for several years is now a local gem for hikers, trail runners, dog owners, and paddlers. After a renovation costing more than $6 million, the park, which is leased to Baltimore County, reopened in 2011. You’ll find an outstanding network of trails, pavilions and grassy areas for picnicking, restroom facilities, a boat launch, and fishing platforms.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 2.4
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The Falling Branch area of Rocks State Park is a 67-acre parcel of land located 5 miles north of the main body of the 855-acre park. The biggest reward on this wooded hike is the second-highest natural vertical waterfall in Maryland, Kilgore Falls. The wooded path will take you over a footbridge and boardwalk as you make your way to the falls, following Falling Branch stream, a tributary of Deer Creek. Falling Branch stream passes through a steep gorge known as Kilgore Rocks. Along the way you’ll see a few hemlock trees, oaks, and lots of maples. Look for white-tailed deer, red fox, wild turkey, black snakes, black racers, and a variety of birds like woodcocks. If you are really lucky, you might even see an eagle. This environmentally sensitive area is also host to a family of beavers, but be sure to enjoy the wildlife from a distance.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.1
For a hiking experience unlike any other in the area, hit the trails at Soldiers Delight National Environment Area (NEA) and take in this endangered ecosystem along the Serpentine Trail. Learn why it was named “serpentine” and enjoy the unique geological features and rare habitat.
Baltimore, MD - Hiking - Trail Length: 2.5
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