Patapsco Valley State Park Switchback and McKeldin Rapids Loop

Liberty Lake, Maryland

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Follow the south branch of the Patapsco River to the confluence of the north and south branches. Combine the Switchback Trail with the McKeldin Rapids Loop for views of wild rapids, ending with a stiff climb and an overlook of Liberty Dam. The McKeldin area is the most northern portion of Patapsco State Park, and the Switchback Trail is one of the most popular trails in the McKeldin area. It follows the south branch of the Patapsco River down to the confluence of the north and south branches of the Patapsco. The trail then follows the north branch up a steep switchback to a ridge with an overlook of Liberty Dam. This hike combines the white-blazed Switchback Trail with the orange-blazed McKeldin Rapids Trail. Most of the trail follows the river.

Patapsco Valley State Park: Switchback and McKeldin Rapids Loop Professional Review and Guide

"Follow the south branch of the Patapsco River to the confluence of the north and south branches. Combine the Switchback Trail with the McKeldin Rapids Loop for views of wild rapids, ending with a stiff climb and an overlook of Liberty Dam.

The McKeldin area is the most northern portion of Patapsco State Park, and the Switchback Trail is one of the most popular trails in the McKeldin area. It follows the south branch of the Patapsco River down to the confluence of the north and south branches of the Patapsco. The trail then follows the north branch up a steep switchback to a ridge with an overlook of Liberty Dam. This hike combines the white-blazed Switchback Trail with the orange-blazed McKeldin Rapids Trail. Most of the trail follows the river."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Liberty Lake
Distance: 3.9
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 2 hours
Season: Year-round
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Local Contacts: McKeldin Recreation Area

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