Moderate 3 with Optional 3.8 Additional Moderate to Easy Side of Strenuous Miles (Total 6.8) in Cromwell Valley Park + Loch Raven Add-On with Optional Post Hike Meal
An opportunity for pleasant hiking within 371- acre Cromwell Valley Park, as well as adding a more strenuous Loch Raven Keep your eyes open for abundant wildlife. It is a stream valley park comprised of pasture, cultivated gardens, open fields, woods, hedgerows, orchards and wooded piedmont hills. There are many species of raptors such as the Red-tailed Hawk, American Kestrel, and Great Horned Owl, which prey on a healthy population of small mammals such as rabbits, deer mice, and meadow voles. Songbird populations include Baltimore Oriole, Bobolink, Eastern Meadowlark, Indigo Bunting, Eastern Bluebird, and many others. Belted Kingfishers and Great Blue Herons are often seen around the stream, Minebank Run.
The valley has been settled since the early 1700s. Some iron ore mining took place in the area with the largest of at least four mines located at the stream's starting point - hence the stream's name. Due to an easily quarried supply of Cockeysville marble, the valley became a production area for agricultural lime. Lime kilns were built, and used to heat the marble by firewood, eventually creating lime powder. The powder was then collected and bagged at the base of the furnace. The lime kilns in the valley operated until the 1920s. The remnants of several of these are still visible in the park today ( see photos ).
This hike will be led at a moderate pace of about 2.5mph which is the speed of the average hiker!
Nearby City: Parkville
Length: 6.8 total miles
Trail Type: Combination
Trail Surface: Packed dirt, short stretches of asphalt and gravel
Scenery: Mature woods, Minebank Run, and plentiful wildlife
Exposure: More shade than sun
Skill Level: Moderate to easy side of strenuous
Duration: 3 hours
Trailhead Elev: 260 feet
Top Elev: 460 feet
Facilities: Restrooms and water in park office
Special Comments: The hike described here leaves Cromwell Valley Park and includes several miles in adjoining Loch Raven Watershed property; if you prefer an easier an/or shorter hike, stay entirely within the park and leave before we hike over to Loch Raven.
We hike rain or shine!
Directions to the Trailhead
Click here for directions to where we meet for this hike.
Hike Meetup Time is at 12:00 p.m. (Noon)
Carpool meetup time from Savage Station is 11:00 a.m.
Here are some suggestions for what to wear and what not to wear for our hikes.
Please remember we are a social hiking group that values fellowship and camaraderie and practice good hike etiquette. We take breaks as necessary and have at least one guide in the front in addition to a "sweeper" in the back so no hiker is left behind. If you get upset because someone has to rest at the top of a hill etc. then find another group or attend the strenuous hikes! We are very supportive, encouraging, and focus on safety while getting or staying fit on the trail and practicing leaving no trace.
Fido Is Welcome On This Hike!
Please take the number of the hiker leader(s) just in case!