Parking lot on Forest Road @ Cedarville State Forest, 10201 Bee Oak Road, Brandywine, MD 20613,
Registration is required for this activity.
Cedarville State Forest, is located at the headwaters of Maryland's freshwater swamp, the Zekiah. The Swamp is one mile wide, and serves as a major haven for wildlife. Cedarville State Forest is home to several unique features in nature.
In 1930, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Forest, Park and Wildlife Service purchased 2,631 acres of land for a forest demonstration area. Later 879 more acres were added to bring the total to 3,510 acres. Cedarville was the postal address for the area, hence the name given to the State Forest. In 1933, the Civilian Conservation Corps, comprised of mostly African-Americans from Washington DC and Baltimore, developed roads, dams, bridges, and trails for fire protection and future access for the development of the area.
Most of Cedarville is forested with over 50 species of trees, including white and loblolly pine plantations. The Piscataway Indian Tribe made this section of Southern Maryland its winter camping ground because of the mild climate and abundance of game. Wildlife, such as white-tailed deer, American beaver, and wild turkey are abundant.
Maryland State Residents must pay $3.00 cash per car, and out of state residents pay $5.00 cash per car paid by the honor system upon entering the park. Make sure you place the tag that comes with the payment envelope onto your car rear view mirror.
Registration is required. We will meet at 9:45 AM and depart at 10:00 AM. This a fairly easy 6.5 mile hike with minimal elevation gain on mostly flat dirt trails with a few small hills, small wood bridges, and old forest roads through a heavily forested woods. The hike will be lead at a pace of about 2.5 mph. There is a Porta-Potty at the Visitor Center which is often the only restroom facility available before the end of the hike, so make sure you make a stop if needed before driving to the trailhead parking lot further inside the park where we meet. Dogs are allowed on this hike, but "must" be kept on a lease.
Cedarville State Forest may be reached by driving along I-95/495 (Capital Beltway) southeast of Washington, D.C. by taking Exit 7A onto MD5 (Branch Avenue), and continuing for approximately 11 miles to turn eastward onto Cedarville Road. (Be watching for this turn about 2 miles after MD 5 and US 301 join together). Continue for another 2.4 miles and turn right onto Bee Oak Road and into the state forest. Turn right onto Forest Road after an additional 1.7 miles. Less than 0.5 mile later, turn right and park in the parking area next to the last remaining charcoal kiln.
I am the current Chair for the Potomac Chapter and have been leading day hikes for years and love exploring the National, State, and Local parks in Maryland, Northern Virginia, and Washington DC. I look forward to meeting AMC members on my hikes.