Salem Forest Trail Opens In Leonardtown
New Addition to St. Mary’s River State Park Offers Recreational Opportunities to Community
Leonardtown — Salem Forest Trail, a new route of St. Mary’s River State Park’s trail system in Leonardtown, is now open to the public. The project includes two trails that are located on the newly acquired Salem State Forest that borders the Park to the north.
“These trails provide increased public access and recreational opportunities for hikers, hunters, mountain bikers and horseback riders in Leonardtown’s native forest,” said David Gailey, Maryland Department of Natural Resources Regional Forester.
With an $8,200 grant from the State Highway Administration, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources refurbished the entrance roads and existing trail that was previously severely eroded. DNR also built a new trail, linking to the existing trail to create a loop on the property and connecting with the park’s trail system. In addition, a new trail head, security gates, gravel parking area and an information kiosk were constructed off of Indian Bridge Road to improve public access.
“The trails enhance our existing trail system, extending into over 800 acres,” said Christy Bright, Park Manager for St. Mary’s River and Point Lookout State Parks. “We are looking forward to more people coming out to enjoy all that our beautiful parks have to offer.”
Situated at the northern end of the St. Mary’s River watershed, the park has a wide range of habitats, from wooded acres and fields to swamps and small streams. For directions and more information about other recreational opportunities that St. Mary’s River State Park has to offer, visit www.dnr.maryland.gov/publiclands/southern/stmarysriver.html.
On July 17, Leonardtown was honored as “Capital for a Day” by Governor Martin O’Malley.
During the day-long celebration, Governor O’Malley presented a check for $743,720 in Waterway Improvement funds to St. Mary’s, including an additional investment of $200,000 to continue renovations of the Leonardtown Wharf. Governor O’Malley made the presentation at a gathering of local elected officials and community leaders to celebrate the great progress, partnership, and state investment made to renovate the Leonardtown Wharf in St. Mary’s County.