Elk Neck State Forest

​​Notice: Due to safety concerns, the rifle and shotgun ranges at Elk Neck State Forest in Cecil County are closed effective immediately for repairs to structural damage. Department of Natural Resources staff will be onsite this week assessing the situation.
The pistol and archery ranges will remain open during normal hours, but visitors may not enter the rifle and shotgun range areas during this closure period. DNR will provide updates on plans for repairing and reopening this part of the range


Beginning January 1, 2024, The Shooting Range Complex at Elk Neck State Forest will be operating on new seasonal hours of operation as listed below:
Tuesday - Sunday​
​March 2 through November 1 – 0900 – 1800 hrs
November 2 through March 1 – 0900 – 1600 hrs
Monday – Closed except on state/federal holidays
Please direct all questions or concerns to the forest office at (410) 287-5675.

Elk Neck State Forest Rifle Range​​ ​

Shooting Range Complex

Questions about the range closing can be addressed to the Elk Neck State Forest office at 410-287-5675.


​All visitors are reminded that it is their responsibility to ensure their firearms are legal to be possessed and transported in the State of Maryland. Legality can be verified by clicking here​.

At this time, yearly permits will only be available for purchase via the COMPASS System at https://compass.dnr.maryland.gov/ or by visiting a sports retail license sales agent in the State of Maryland.​​

The shooting range at Elk Neck State Forest is open 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 pm Tuesday through Sunday November 2 through March 1 and 09:00 am to 6:00 pm March 2 through November 1. Mondays closed all day except on all state and federal holidays with same opening and closing times above.​

You may purchase a permit for the year at a cost of $50.00 for ages 18 to 61, $25.00 for anyone 62 or older, or you may choose to purchase a daily permit for $10.00 (under 18 years of age is Free with a paying adult). The permits may be purchased at the forest office through an honor system (cash or check). If paying with cash you must have exact amount. Please download the range regulations below for specific information on using the range. All rules and regulations are posted on information boards and daily permits.

Elk Neck State Forest Yearly Range Permits can also be purchased from any authorized Sport License Sales agent or online at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Sport License Sales.

There are four ranges:

  • 100 yard (rifle/muzzleloader)
  • 50 yard (pistol)
  • skeet range (no thrower provided)
  • bow & arrow range

All shotguns shot on the rifle range must utilize a slug shell. No shot shell of any type is permitted on the rifle range.

All shooters must supply a target stand that is free standing in accordance with the range regulations. Target center is required to be a minimum of 54” above the ground.

Elk Neck State Forest does not rent firearms for use by the public nor provide ammunition or targets.

Download a copy of the Range Regulations​

Permits are available at the Maintenance Complex near the Main Entrance and must be obtained prior to using the range complex.

All ranges are closed the second Saturday in September to allow for the Northern Chesapeake Sportsmans Kids Youth day activities.​​​​​​​​​​