Time for a Sunday afternoon hike, and exploring a section of Gunpowder Falls State Park.
Sweet Air area - Gunpowder Falls S.P. (Cody Jean/Barley loop)
Plenty of parking at Sweet Air. Proceed to top of hill, parking on the right (dirt/grass lot)
Distance: Approx. 5.2 miles
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Hiking Time: About 2 1/2 - 3 hrs. depending on pace
Water does not play as large a part in this section of Gunpowder Falls State Park as in others. The Barley Pond is a nice setting in the midst of the upland woods and surrounding fields. Blue gill, red spotted newts and bull frogs live in this pond, at least that's all I've noticed to date. We'll take the Cody Jean Trail to start (grn) to the Outer Pine Loop (ylw) and meander towards the Boundary Trail (blu) to a small rest area. We'll contnue down a connecting trail (ora) down to the Little Gunpowder Trail (wht). A mid level rdge line wil give us views of the Little Gunpowder Falls River as we slowly descend to the banks. After following the river NNW we again join the Boundary Trail (blu) moving up through a shallow valley toward the top of the Little Gunpowder Trail (wht). Two successive rights will head us to the Barley Loop (ylw) for a nice peaceful walk through the pond area and the hardwoods surrrounding it. A left (ylw) and then a right at the top of the trail (wht) leads us back across a corn field towards the parking area.
The trails are well shaded for the most part, but about 1/4 of the time we'll be in open to semi-open areas. Dress in layers so you can shed items as needed.
The Sweet Air area was settled as early as 1704 and in 1712, Charles Calvert 3rd Lord Baltimore gave his fourth wife a 10,000 acre manor near this location, called "My Ladies Manor". These large manors eventually broke apart to be farmed for tobacco and corn. Sweet Air also operated as a dairy farm in recent history before being added to the Gunpowder Falls State Park in the 60's.
From Interstate 95
Take the Fallston/Joppatowne Exit (74).
Take Mountain Road (152 north - left for 11 miles) to Route 165. Turn left heading
south on MD 165 (Baldwin Mill Road) for about 1/2 mile. Go to Common directions.
Alternate directions from Towson/Baltimore areas:
Rt 1 N to Mountain Road (Rt 152), turn left on 152 for approx. 5.5 miles to Rt 165. Turn left
heading south on MD 165 (Baldwin Mill Road) for about 1/2 mile. Go to Common directions.
Rt 147 (Harford Rd) to Mountain Road (Rt 152), turn left on 152 for approx. 5 miles to Rt 165. Turn left heading south on MD 165 (Baldwin Mill Road) for about 1/2 mile. Go to Common directions.
Rt 146 (Jarretsville Pike) to Hess Road, turn right on Hess Road for approx 1.1 miles. Turn right on Park Road for approx .27 miles and left on Moores Road for approx. .9 miles. Turn right on Dalton Brevard Road. Parking is at the end of Dalton Brevard Road within the park on the right hand side.
Turn right onto Greene Road for about a mile, turn right onto Moores Road for about .3
miles. Turn left onto Dalton Brevard Road. Parking is at the end of Dalton-Brevard Road
within the park on the right hand side.
Pets on leash are welcome at this location.
Sweet Air Area - Gunpowder Falls State Park
2800 Dalton Brevard Road
Baldwin, MD 21013