What we're about


- Reconnecting People with the Natural World - for the Health of It -

Founded in 2007 by cybersecurity executive, Kellie Carlisle, Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group (MAHG) aka Outdoors for Health was inspired by a passion for promoting and providing low-cost opportunities for people to get up and outside to connect with the natural world and enjoy the health benefits it provides. Today, the organization has grown to become a very active 23,000+ member strong 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/mahg-charity.html)dedicated to serving our mission (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/index.html) of providing education, awareness, and opportunities for people to experience the variety of health benefits provided by connecting with the outdoors, “just for the health of it!” Our organization has hosted over ~7000 events ranging from 2-mile newbie sneaker social hikes all the way up to 50+ mile one day fully supported hikes, educational/awareness offerings, paddle trips, and more. So no matter your preference, we should have something for you. We are a diverse organization filled with members who enjoy a wide variety of outdoor activities including - but not limited to hiking and educational opportunities related to the natural world. MAHG also promotes the importance of being good outdoor stewards through environmental awareness activities.

We enjoy exploring an incredible variety of locations throughout Maryland, DC, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and West Virginia. Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group (MAHG) appreciates Mother Nature’s diversity and the diversity of people. ALL are welcome and encouraged to join. Whether you are a newbie or a very seasoned outdoor enthusiast, we are sure to have an event for you on our very active and varied calendar.

Our focus is on safety, camaraderie, and having a ton of fun while connecting with the natural world. So a sense of humor is a must with us!

*** WARNING! — Our Calendar (https://www.meetup.com/Maryland-Hiking/calendar/) is VERY Active ALL Four Seasons and Can be Beneficial to Your Health ***

Today’s fast-paced and technologically dominated society can take a toll on a person’s psychological, physical, and emotional well-being. Many people are trapped within an indoor and plugged-in lifestyle that can be overwhelming and very stressful. Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group promotes reconnecting people with nature by providing plentiful and varied opportunities for people to enjoy the outdoors.

Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group’s activities are a healthy and fun way to relieve stress and “unplug” while enjoying the variety of what Mother Nature has to offer throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Decrease stress - get fitter - get healthier, and get nature empowered, all while knowing you are supporting an important cause with Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group.

Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/about/)for information about our current charitable initiatives and programs/studies serving our mission.

• Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group offers many opportunities to give back by helping with maintaining trails throughout the Mid-Atlantic region and hosting in addition to participating in other environmental stewardship and community building events and workshops. Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group offers educational classes and certifications in Leave No Trace outdoor ethics and our own highly regarded Outdoor Leadership Certification program. Additionally, MAHG has an active outreach program to help with educating others regarding the many health benefits of hiking and the importance of taking care of our trails and our overall environment.

• Youth Education and Re-Connecting with the Natural World - We are currently preparing to expand our program that benefits under-represented and inner-city youth by combining connection with nature and education. Our solutions-based approach begins with a full immersion experience of hiking and other fun, unplugged and screen-less outdoor activities. We combine the activities while educating tomorrow's workers regarding the abundant employment opportunities the natural world offers in the booming field of green collar jobs. "For references and more, please visit our main website (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org). Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group provides opportunities for increased confidence, self-esteem, and hope for a better tomorrow. Today's youth will be the earth's stewards of tomorrow, so it is imperative that they become familiar with the world outside of their screens."

Why Hike with Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group? — As a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit public charitable organization (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/mahg-charity.html), when you hike with MAHG, you are also helping us with serving our mission to benefit the health of others! Every step you take with MAHG is also a step for recipients of our initiatives and programs. We bring people together to have fun and make friends while enjoying the many health benefits of the great outdoors in a safe and welcoming environment. Hiking not only connects people with the natural world, but it also fosters an appreciation and respect for the environment and overall sense of community. Whether you are looking to lose weight, have never hiked a mile in your life, or are looking to rise to the challenge of hiking 30+ or miles in one day, we have a hike for you, all seasons. Remember, we were all newbies once, and we enjoy introducing others to hiking and other outdoor pursuits - in fact, it is a core part of our mission to reconnect people with the natural world.

Who Can Hike with Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group? — Simply put, you! Whether you are young, old, working, single, in a committed relationship, retired, laid off, shy, talkative, energetic, geeky, lazy, recovering from an injury, social, or a competitive hiker, Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is for you. We do more than just embracing our diversity — we thrive on it!

When We Hike? — We do it in the morning, afternoon, after work, evening, darkest of night, every weekend day, and all year ‘round and average 10 times a week. Get your mind out of the gutter ‘cause we are talking about hiking, stewardship, and outdoor education here. Seasonally, we offer weekday day hikes in addition to our variety of after work hikes.

Where We Hike? — We hike throughout the Mid-Atlantic region and beyond! We visit Shenandoah National Park, George Washington National Forest, and the Appalachian Trail almost every weekend. We strive to offer at least one easy, moderate, and strenuous hike within 60 miles of Baltimore, DC, and Northern Virginia each weekend day. MAHG hosts cookouts, white water floats, hike out/paddle backs, cave trips, natural water slides hikes, hikes to view frozen waterfalls, Appalachian Trail section hikes, camping trips, volunteer offerings, and last but certainly not least, our very popular Monuments in the Moonlight hikes.

How We Hike — Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is a mission-driven (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/index.html) nonprofit charitable organization. Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/about/) to learn about our mission, programs and initiatives, and our accomplishments! We are committed to connecting people with the natural world, community building, giving back/stewardship, and providing educational opportunities. MAHG is a well-established and highly regarding organization well known for its excellent camaraderie — all with safety in mind while emphasizing having fun out on the trails! We limit our hikes to small groups for the comfort and consideration of others and to better enjoy and respect the environment.

We have many partnerships. A sample of a few and how we work with them - as a partner with Leave No Trace (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/pages/9596032/Leave_No_Trace_Hiking/) (LNT), we practice, encourage, and educate others about the importance of practicing proper outdoor ethics and teach LNT certification courses several times every year. Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is also proud to be a Gold level Alliance Member of the American Hiking Society (http://www.americanhiking.org/). MAHG participates in the "Adopt and Acre" program by adopting land in the Appalachian Mountains to support The Nature Conservancy (http://www.nature.org/). Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group provides volunteer and trail maintenance opportunities and other community-building events throughout the entire Mid-Atlantic Region. Contact our office at 410.480.5000 or see our main website (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org) for more information regarding our cause and our accomplishments, initiatives, partnerships, and programs.

Our leadership team consists of qualified, dedicated, and very appreciated volunteers who are some of the best in the region!

We hope to see you on the trail soon for great times while enjoying all the health benefits of connecting with the natural world - remember to bring your sense of humor (a must with us) and be prepared to have a ton of fun!

Kellie Carlisle - Founder, MAHGs Board of Directors, and the MAHG Volunteer Leadership Team

Upcoming events (1)

American Chestnut Land Trust - South Tract! A Moderate 5 Miles

American Chestnut Land Trust: South Tract Area with Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group! An Easy-Side-of-Moderate 6.5 Miles


Beautiful American Chestnut Land Trust — South Tract Area Trails! A Moderate 5 Miles with Optional Post Hike Meal

Mid Atlantis Hiking Group does not require proof of vaccination. Not all hikers may be vaccinated. No organized carpools, but Social Distancing at all times. Mask inside and in crowed places.
If you exhibit symptoms of COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the last 14 days, then please do not sign up. Also inform the hike leader if you are diagnosed with Covid-19 within 7 days from the hike.

The American Chestnut Land Trust (ACLT) is a local land trust located in Calvert County, Maryland, an hour’s drive from both Washington, D.C. and Baltimore.

This hike explores upland forests, old fields, and marshlands as the trail weaves among the remains of early homesteads. The landscape and hiking trails here are a real marvel of private initiative on the part of the American Chestnut Land Trust. Upland farms on both sides of Parkers Creek protect what is now considered the only pristine marsh on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay.

The American Chestnut Land Trust (ACLT) is, as its name suggests, named for a tree. Unfortunately, the American Chestnut tree succumbed to the “Chestnut Blight”, a disease introduced in 1900. Within a span of only 40 years, the blight proceeded down the Appalachian Mountains, destroying a forest that had stood for thousands of years! American chestnut trees are now often seen as standing white trunks, bare of any bark, ghostly white, and look like "tree skeletons" amid an otherwise healthy forest.

• Note to Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group Members:

Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is an Active and Supporting Member of The American Chestnut Land Trust (ACLT) who's charged with protecting the most pristine watershed on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. The land trust protects over 3,000 acres of wetlands, forest, and farmland in rapidly developing Calvert County, Maryland. The land trust also protects land in the smaller nearby Governors Run Watershed, which contains mature hardwood forest and plants species more commonly found in the mountains and Piedmont than on the Coastal Plain. They have a comprehensive land management program established to manage all of the lands, structures, and waters for which they are responsible in an environmentally sustainable manner to protect the natural and cultural resources of the Parkers Creek and Governor's Run watersheds for the benefit of this and future generations.

The South tract area encompasses old family farms, cemeteries, and a burgeoning beaver community and has a character that is different than the North tract. There is a massive beaver dam as well the remains of an ancient but huge American Chestnut tree (it succumbed to the chestnut blight that affects American Chestnut trees; there is still a small tree standing). We also pass by hybrids which have been planted a few years ago. The area is comprised of a rare mix of various hardwoods, bottomland swamp, and creeks - all making their way to the Chesapeake Bay.

The land is privately owned and permanently protected by the American Chestnut Land Trust. The American Chestnut Land Trust is a moving story of community-inspired conservation. Working in partnership with the state of Maryland and The Nature Conservancy, ACLT owns or manages some 3,000 acres of public and private land in Calvert County, Maryland. In addition to preserving the ecologically important areas of the Parkers Creek watershed, the group has had a significant impact in protecting cultural resources, such as old farmsteads that tell the history of Chesapeake Bay settlement.

Trail Information

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Port Republic, MD
Length: About 5 total miles
Elevation Gain: 500 ft.
Trail Type: Two loops
Skill Level: Moderate due to a few short steep hills.
Trail Surface: Old dirt farm roads converted into nice hiking trails
Local Contacts: American Chestnut Land Trust
Local Maps: USGS Prince Frederick

Park Entry Fee
There is no park entrance fee.

Gear Suggestions
Click Here (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/gear-information.html) for suggestions regarding what to wear and what not to wear for hiking the trails.

Weather Information
We hike rain or shine. Click Here (http://www.wunderground.com/q/zmw:20676.1.99999) to view the forecast for the area where we will be hiking.

Hike Pace
The goal for this hike is to maintain an average moving pace of ~ 2.5 mph. This speed is frequently used in popular hiking publications to represent the pace of an average hiker. We welcome you to please sign up for another hike if you know that this is not a comfortable pace for you. We strive to offer a variety of hikes and pace options so we can always have something for everyone no matter their interest and ability.

Our RSVP and Group Etiquette
Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Maryland-Hiking/pages/RSVP_Rules_and_Etiquette/) to review our RSVP policies and group etiquette.

Carpool Suggestions and Information

Note that you are responsible for knowing how to get from carpool locations to the venue. Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is not responsible for transportation to and from events or carpools. Suggested carpool times and locations are provided as a courtesy because many members are either new to the area or a particular hike or venues location. Please Use the Comments section below this posting or e-mail to make arrangements for carpooling needs and offerings.

Baltimore Area Carpool Suggestion - Savage Station
To carpool or caravan from the Baltimore area, people can arrange to meet at Savage Station. Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Maryland-Hiking/pages/Carpool_Directions_for_Savage_Station/) for directions and additional information regarding carpooling from the suggested Savage Station location.

DC Area Carpool Suggestion - Centreville
To carpool or caravan from the metro DC area, people can arrange to meet at the Centreville Park and Ride. Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Maryland-Hiking/pages/Directions_to_Centerville_Park_and_Ride_Carpool/) for directions and additional information regarding carpooling from the suggested Centreville Park and Ride location.

If you can drive or want to carpool from any particular location, please post your offer to help those in need of a ride, and those looking for a ride, in the comment section below. Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/pages/Suggested_Carpool_Locations/?name=Suggested_Carpool_Locations) for a list of suggested carpool locations, each complete with a physical address, GPS coordinates, driving directions and additional carpool information. For those who need a ride, reach out to the drivers. Make friends, and support the environment — by just offering a ride!

Directions to the Trailhead
Click Here for Directions (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/aclt---south-tract-area.html) to Where We Meet for this Hike

Meet & Greet and Sign-In — 8:45-8:55 a.m.

The Hike is at 9:00 a.m.

Carpool Time from Savage Station — 7:30 a.m.

Carpool Time from Centreville Park and Ride — 7:45 a.m.

Please remember we are a volunteer supported organization that values fellowship and camaraderie while practicing good hike etiquette (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/hike-and-trail-etiquette.html)and Leave No Trace (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/leave-no-trace.html) principles. Our hikes are led by generous, dedicated, and qualified MAHG members who volunteer (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/pages/9595722/How_To_Join_Our_Leadership_Team!/) as leaders for Mid-Atlantic Hiking Groups volunteer leadership team. Hikes also have a volunteer “sweeper” to help ensure that no hiker is left behind. MAHG volunteers and members are very supportive, encouraging, with a focus on safety while enjoying the excellent camaraderie and benefiting from the many health benefits of hiking and unplugging from the stress of day-to-day life. Sharing what we know and learning from each other is an important part of MAHGs core values, as is our dedication to the conservation of our natural resources and our commitment to the organization's mission (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/). Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is a volunteer supported tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization, (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/mahg-charity.html) and donations ARE tax deductible (https://midatlantichikinggroup.networkforgood.com/projects/17107-fall-into-hiking-for-health). Tax ID:[masked] (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/mahg-charity.html).

A Well-Mannered, Leashed Fido is Welcome on this Hike!

Let’s have fun out on the trails and see you there!


• Click Here Now to Donate (https://midatlantichikinggroup.networkforgood.com/projects/18298-for-the-health-of-it) and Help Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group in Serving our Mission (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/index.html).

• Donations (https://midatlantichikinggroup.networkforgood.com/projects/18298-for-the-health-of-it) to Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group are Tax Deductible: Tax ID[masked] (http://midatlantichikinggroup.org/mahg-charity.html). Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charitable organization.

• Click Here (https://www.meetup.com/Mid-Atlantic-Hiking-Group/about/) to Learn more about Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group’s Mission.

• 100% of Every Dollar Goes Directly to the Expenses of Serving our Mission.

Past events (6,805)

Catoctin Mountain Park: McAfee Falls, Hog/Wolf/Chimney Rock! A Mod 8-Mile Hike

Catoctin Mountain Park: McAfee Falls, Hog, Wolf & Chimney Rock & Vistas with Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group! A Moderate 8 Miles


Photos (137,973)