Elk Neck State Forest


Beginning Monday, September 19, 2022, Elk Neck State Forest staff will be making repairs to Trail 1 between the forest entrance off of Irishtown Road and the shooting range complex. Please maintain the posted travel speed of 20 mph, be aware of heavy equipment and construction vehicles, and obey any directions by State Forest staff. Please give the heavy equipment and construction vehicles the right-of-way until they safely move out of the travel lanes. These repairs are anticipated to take up to one month to complete. Every effort will be made to avoid major interruptions to forest visitors, and we thank you for your patience while these important repairs are made. The shooting range will be open at its usual times. Please direct all questions to the forest office at 410-287-5675.

Elk Neck State Forest Entrance Sign Contact: 410-287-5675

Cecil County

Elk Neck State Forest
717 Irishtown Road
North East, MD 21901

Office Hours:
7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday – Friday

Mailing Address:

Black Hill Ranger Station
130 McKinneytown Road
North East, MD 21901


Elk Neck State Forest is an approximate 3,571 acre parcel of land situated in central Cecil County consisting of four separate tracts of land. Elk Neck State Forest is open to the public for hunting, hiking, horseback riding and mountain biking. Shooting ranges for bow, hand gun, shotgun and rifle are also available to the public. Permits are accessed from a self-service honor system located at the Maintenance Complex. The forest supports a diverse habitat with mixed deciduous and evergreen trees and an understory of mountain laurel, azaleas and other native shrubs. Birdwatchers, including members of the Cecil County Bird Club, enjoy seasonally observing the forest's abundance of migratory birds. For those interested in wildflowers, the Forest is home to an abundance of natural fauna.

The Forest is open from sun rise to sun down each day. During periods of inclement weather, forest roads may be closed temporarily until they are safe for public use. The Forest will remain open with public parking available at the Main Entrance off of Irishtown Road.

On bad weather days, please call the Forest Office for current road conditions and temporary closures.