American Chestnut Land Trust: North Tract Area! A Very Versatile and Biodeverse Moderate 3-7 Mile Hike with an Optional Post Hike Meal!
The American Chestnut Land Trust (ACLT) is a local land trust located in Calvert County, Maryland and is an hour's drive from both Washington, D.C. and Baltimore. Distance from Washington, D.C.: 49 Miles
"This area has a couple of great trails and it's near the Chesapeake. Its nice and hilly though, great for people who want a good view and break a little sweat!" Member - The Mid-Atlantic Hiking Group!
The American Chestnut Land trust (ACLT) is name for a tree. It succumbed to the chestnut blight, a disease introduced in 1900. Within a span of only 40 years, the blight moved down the Appalachian mountains, destroying a climax forest that had stood for thousands of years. American chestnut trees are often the standing white trunks, bare of any bark, ghostly white, like tree skeletons amid an otherwise healthy forest. Upland farms on both sides of Parkers Creek protect what is consider the only pristine marsh on the western shore of the Chesapeake bay.
On this Northern area of the Land Trust will be experiencing Parkers Creek firsthand. This hike is a different parking area than our hike in the south tract of the ACLT so please be sure to check the directions since they are not the same area! In this area of the Trust, both the Swamp Trail (3 miles) and Parkers Creek Loops (4.1 Miles) are routes that descend to overlooks over the stream. At the junction of Old Parkers Creek Road, where a bridge once spanned the creek, it is possible to sit, in the closing hours of the day, and wait for the loud slap sound of a beaver trail.The forest floor bursts with mayapple in spring and large specimens of jack-in-the-pulpit. The handful of small tributaries crossed on Parkers Creek Trail show the broad leaves of three typical freshwater marshes: arrow arum, spatterdock, and pickerelweed. The landscape and hiking trails here are a real marvel of private initiative on the part of the American Chestnut Land Trust.
The pace will be that of an average hiker, not too fast or too slow.
Distance Options and Descriptions
This trek has several distance and difficulty options so there is truly something for everyone so come on out for good times! Both the Swamp Trail (3 miles, hilly and a great leg workout-moderate) and Parkers Creek Loops (4.1 miles-easy) are routes that descend to overlooks over the stream. Groups will start from each trail so for those of you wanting hike one or the other can. Also, we will offer a combined hike of both trails which will be starting with Swamp Trail and then hike the Creek Loop for a total of 7.1 Miles.
Nearby City: Prince Frederick
Length: Your choice of: Swamp Trail, 3.0 Miles (Lots of short/rolling, but rather steep hills that are short in duration; or adding on the Parkers Creek Loop, an additional 4.1 Miles (on the easier side and less hilly than Swamp Trail) for a combined 7.1 mile hike.
Elevation Gain: Vertical Up is 282 feet and vertical down is 449 feet.
Skill Level: Of either trail, the Swamp Trail features terrain that is steeper-but even these are of short duration.
Trail Surface: Natural surface dirt packed.
We hike rain or shine! Click here for the forecast of the area we will be hiking.
There are 2 carpools for this hike!
Baltimore Area Carpool
To carpool or caravan from the Baltimore metro area, meet at Savage Station. Click here for directions to Savage Station. Use the comment section to discuss carpooling with other members.
DC Area Carpool
To carpool or caravan from the metro DC area, meetup at the Centerville Park and Ride. Click here for informationand directions to the Centerville location. Use the comment section to discuss carpooling with other members.
If you can drive or want to carpool from additional locations, please post your location in the comment section below. Click here for suggested carpool locations complete with directions. 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 to where we meet for this hike.
Meetup time is at 10:00 a.m.
Carpool meetup time from Savage Station is 8:30 a.m.
Carpool meetup time at Centerville Park and Ride is 8:15 a.m.
Click here for 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 which means that no hiker is left behind. If you get upset because someone has to rest at the top of a hill etc. then please find another group! We are very supportive, encouraging, and focus on safety while getting or staying fit on the trail and practicing Leave No Trace outdoor ethics.
Fido is Welcome on This Hike!
See you there and please take the hike leader(s) number with you just in case!