Potomac-Garrett State Forest

Attention State Forest Visitors

Temporary Road / Trail closure: A segment of the Potomac State Forests popular Laurel Run Road (which serves as part part of the Wallman/Laurel Run ORV Trail) , will be temporarily closed beginning Monday October 29, 2018. AT&T has been upgrading the communications cable across the county and will begin trenching and boring work on the Laurel Run leg of this communications line at that time. The road will be gated closed at the Laurel Run Bridge. Work will commence just beyond the bridge, down to the Potomac River as the AT&T right- of-way runs with the Laurel Run road through this segment. This project is expected to run into winter, and the road will be closed until completion.

Potomac – Garrett State Forest provides public access to the forest while managing over 60 miles of multi-use trails and roads. Visitors are encouraged to visit and explore other road and trail opportunities while this important communications upgrade is carried out.

Potomac - Garrett State Forests – Road access updates - 10/6/2017

Attention State Forest visitors, with the hunting seasons upon us, visitors planning a trip to the State Forest should be aware of a few seasonal road openings and closings that may affect their visit.

On the Potomac State Forest:

  1. The North Hill Access Road, near the Lostland Area of Potomac State Forest, is open to licensed vehicle traffic through January 31st.
  2. The Handicapped Hunter Access Road , off of the Eagle Rock Road , is temporarily closed for timber harvest and habitat improvement work (as seen in the state forests FY- 2015 Annual Work Plan). Hunters are encouraged to explore the other Handicapped Hunting areas available throughout the forest, while this important management work is carried out to improve future hunting opportunities on this tract.

On the Garrett State Forest

  1. The Fire Tower Road, in the Snaggy Mountain Area, will be opened Monday (10/16) before the early muzzle loading deer season and will remain open through January 31st.
  2. The Maple Glade Road, also in the Snaggy Mountain Area, is undergoing considerable maintenance work including culvert replacement, ditch and surface work. Sections of road are closed to through traffic as work progresses along the road, while we try to complete this work before winter weather sets in. Please be mindful of the signage and barricades, as well as heavy equipment and trucks while traveling this narrow forest access road.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we work to improve public access and wildlife habitat on your State Forest.

Firewood Alert

Firewood for camping must be purchased from local vendors. Please do not bring personal firewood in to the State Forest. A wide variety of forest insect pests are accidentally transported and introduced to new areas by transporting personal firewood between distinct geographic locations. Please keep our forests safe!

Self-Guided Recreational Activities:


Man at 3-D Archery Range
  • 3-D Archery Range

    The 3-D Archery Range offers fun and challenging shots at 30 life size 3-dimensional targets. Cost is $7.00 for adults $5.00 for ages 12-16 and free for children under 11. The range is open daily from April through September, from sunrise to sunset. The range will be free for all who have a valid hunting license on September 22 in recognition of National Hunting and Fishing Day.

  • Potomac State Forest outdoor recreation opportunities and amenities include cross country skiing, camping and shelters, fishing, hiking trails, hunting, picnicking, riding trails, and snowmobiling.

  • Disabled Access symbolPotomac State Forest offers accessible hunting areas, park office and one pavilion. For additional accessible amenities in Maryland State Forests and Parks, visit the Accessibility For All section of this website.

  • Pets are allowed in all areas of the Forest. No leash is required as long as pets are under control.

  • Trail Maps:

  • Camping Areas

    Wallman/Laurel Run: South of Oakland, along Wallman and Laurel Run Roads leading to North Branch of Potomac River (16 sites).
    15 Laurel Run Rd., Oakland, MD 21550
  • Lostland Run: Near headquarters area, along Lostland Run road leading to North Branch of Potomac River (6 sites).
    1701 Potomac Camp Rd., Oakland, MD 21550
    Primitive Camping Along Forest Roads: One Group Site and one Shelter Site per area, along with roadside sites. Group Sites (up to 20 persons) must be reserved in advance for $20 per night. Shelter Sites are $15 per night and all other sites are "first come, first served" for $10 per night. Self-registration at camping area. Call Forest Office for reservations at 301-334-2038.
    Backpack Camping is also permitted throughout the forest. Backpackers must register at one of the five self-registration areas on the forest by filling out an envelope, enclosing the appropriate payment ($10/night) and including itinerary with names of all campers. Campers can also obtain a permit by mail. Campfires are permitted except during drought conditions. Leave No Trace guidelines apply to backpack camping as well. Camping is NOT allowed within 200 feet of any trail or stream. The day use area of the forest is free.
  • Horseback Riding
    Horseback riding is allowed on designated, developed and maintained trails and roads designed to accommodate recreational use. Horses are not allowed on the foot trail in the Lostland Run area. Horse camping is also available.

Photographs by Potomac State Forest Staff.