Western Maryland Rail Trail

​Washington CountyBicykcling and Running on the Western Maryland Rail Trail

Western Maryland Rail Trail
c/o Fort Frederick State Park
11100 Fort Frederick Road
Big Pool MD 21711

Contact: 301-842-2155​

​Hours: Sunrise to Sunset

ALERT: 4-2-2020 - The Western Maryland Rail Trail remains OPEN during the Governor’s Stay at Home directive. While no Maryland resident should be leaving their home unless it is for an essential job or reason, such as obtaining food or medicine, seeking urgent medical attention, or for other necessary purposes, the order does allow for outdoor exercise recreation. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is reaffirming the need for members of the public who engage in outdoor recreation to follow all rules and guidelines in place to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The department website includes a guide to social distancing and safe outdoor activity https://dnr.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/COVID-19-Personal-Spacing-at-Parks.aspx.

The safety and well-being of our staff and visitors to Maryland State Parks is our top priority and we take that responsibility very seriously. With that in mind, Maryland State Parks and trails will remain open at this time; however, staff will be taking extra safety precautions to mitigate the risk of contact with the COVID-19 virus. This includes the implementation of enhanced cleaning protocols at all of the parks’ restrooms. All other State Park buildings, campgrounds, playgrounds and shelters are closed to the public. All planned events and gatherings of groups larger than 10 people are cancelled through the end of April. We will continue to monitor the situation and adjust operations as events warrant. This website will be updated as new information becomes available.

For the Department of Natural Resources Issued Guidance on Governor Hogan’s Stay at Home Order please visit https://news.maryland.gov/dnr/2020/03/30/dnr-issues-guidance-on-governor-hogans-stay-at-home-order/

The Western Maryland Rail Trail (WMRT) is about 28 miles long and parallels the C&O Canal Towpath for its entire length. A paved, linear trail, it is suited to anyone seeking a pleasant, leisurely outdoor experience - walking, running, biking, and inline skating. The easy grade and paved surface make this trail ideal for families, the elderly, and persons with limited mobility. The WMRT is wheelchair accessible. Pets are permitted on the trail.

Class 1 Electric Bicycles - Class 1 electric bicycles are permitted on the Western Maryland Rail Trail. They are regulated the same as all other bicycles, and are subject to all applicable bicycle rules and regulations regarding operation and safety equipment. For information regarding the Electric Bicycle Policy please visit: https://dnr.maryland.gov/Publiclands/Pages/Statewide-Maryland-Park-Policies.aspx​​

Indigo Tunnel By-Pass - The Indigo Tunnel is home to eight different bat species. Due to the decline in the bat population the tunnel is closed to the public. Between Mile Markers 24 and 27, the tunnel is by-passed by using ramps to the C&O Canal Towpath. The by-pass is two miles long due to a bend in the Potomac River. The surface of the towpath is for the most part an even hard-packed dirt trail. The towpath can be very muddy following heavy rain. For information regarding the C&O Canal Towpath please visit: https://www.nps.gov/choh/index.htm

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