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Cunningham Falls and Lower Trail. Hike the Catoctin Mountain Extended Loop Trail, Hike Chimney Rock at Catoctin Mountain Park. Hike the Cunningham Falls Lower Trail. (One trail to the Falls and the other back to the car) The age and skill level of your children will probably help you decide which trail to take. There’s two trail heads in the parking area, and the other trail head is the Cliff Trail. Cunningham Falls is an easy drive from 270 and has plenty of parking along the main road and various pockets of parking as you approach the main entrance for the falls. Went here twice this summer to cool off. This 78-foot waterfall, among the largest in the state, is easily accessible by two short trails. The Lower Trail to Cunningham Falls follows a ravine up from the Hunting Creek Lake of Cunningham Falls State Park. This place as great potential after few rainy days. This park is approximately 8 square miles in area and contains over 25 miles of trails, some breath-taking views, and, yes, a little bit of history. Head northwest as the trail gradually climbs through the woods passing interpretive trail signs that provide interesting pieces of information about the area. Cunningham Falls is very kid friendly, and easy for families with babies and toddlers. This park is approximately 8 square miles in area and contains over 25 miles of trails, some breath-taking views, and, yes, a little bit of history. The easy out-and-back half-mile Lower Trail from the lake leads to the falls. Check the website for more information. The trail is well-defined. As of noon on Saturday there is still plenty of parking as well. There are two trails you can take to Cunningham Falls, the Cliff Trail (yellow marker/blaze) and the Lower Trail (red marker/blaze). Leisure opportunities like swimming, hiking, fishing and canoeing are available. I'll definitely come back in winter after few inches of snow. Each photo and review that you add on The Outbound earns you points towards rewards, free gear, and access to exclusive discounts. The waterfall was small due to lack of rain. The Boardwalk Trail provides access for wheelchairs. This is a new adventure! information. Cunningham Falls. Being February there were still some icy patches on the trail but adults and children alike were still able to make the trip to the falls. Look for the red-blazed Lower Falls Trail from the main parking area to the west of Hunting Creek Lake. There was some mud/icy spots on the cliff part of the trail and some rock scrambling was necessary but otherwise decent conditions. You'll likely see many types of birds and small wildlife along the trail, as there are undisturbed native plants and trees. Cunningham Falls Loop MN 10.8°W 5/10/16 50 0 50 100 150 M 200 0.05 0 0.05 MI 0.1 Scale 1:3477 Datum WGS84 Distance from start (mi) 0.0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.2 Cunningham Falls. A nice hike. You can view the falls from a boardwalk or climb up the rocks on the right side of the falls. Plus it is also next to Catoctin Mountain National Park which I had to skip as it was getting late but Catoctin has a hike to a Furnace and both parks would be a great day trip. Cliff Trail--yellow blaze (3/4 mile) Rough terrain offers strenuous hiking past rock outcrops that lead to the Falls. I hiked the Lower Falls Trail to the falls and then hooked onto the Cliff Trail, which took me back to the parking lot. Near Thurmont, Maryland. Cliff Trail--yellow blaze (3/4 mile) Rough terrain offers strenuous hiking past rock outcrops that lead to the Falls. If you’d like an easy walk to the falls, be sure to enter the trail head for the Lower Trail. While partly obscured by a huge hemlock, Cunningham Falls appears ahead. Graham itself. There are two trails you can take to Cunningham Falls, the Cliff Trail (yellow marker/blaze) and the Lower Trail (red marker/blaze). Intermediate. We visited the Cunningham Falls State Park on a weekday in Mid-September. © 2021 The Outbound Collective - Terms of Use - Privacy Policy. The lower trail is very family friendly and an easy path to follow. To reach Cunningham Falls, there are two choices; Lower Trail, which is a relatively easy 1-mile hike out-and-back hike, or Cliff Trail, a rockier, more technical path with a higher elevation that is about 1.5 miles out and back. Above the large beach lot is a smaller parking lot at the trail head for Cunningham Falls. The stream with rocks covered in snow will make it beautiful. From the tropical derecho the area experienced a couple weeks ago, the falls were gushing with cool water. Cunningham Falls Lower Trail and Cliff Trail Loop is a 1.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Thurmont, Maryland that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. Be the first to share your experience. The lower trail is very family friendly and an easy path to follow. Start of Lower Falls Trail. We decided to explore several area inside the park. Known bouldering areas are along the Lower Trail and Cliff Trail from the Houck area to the park's eponymous falls, but outcroppings and boulders beckon from deeper in the woods. Fun rocky climb - but make sure you hike in the loop in the recommended direction - counterclockwise. Cunningham Falls State Park. First half was easy. The tr... Chimney Rock is the quintessential breathtaking view that makes a hike worthwhile. Virtual Tour of Cunningham Falls Out-and-Back. The route follows an abandoned road, which is being reclaimed by the forest, and contours around the slopes of Mt. Head northwest as the trail gradually climbs through the woods passing interpretive trail signs that provide interesting pieces of information about the area. To reach Cunningham Falls, there are two choices; Lower Trail, which is a relatively easy 1-mile hike out-and-back hike, or Cliff Trail, a rockier, more technical path with a … Our RECORDING today totaled out to about 3 point 7 miles. The lake was frozen but it was neat to see how the frozen water meets the sand. Graham itself. If you’d like an easy walk to the falls, be sure to enter the trail head for the Lower Trail. Travel past the campground road to reach trailhead parking in about 0.5 mile. Cunningham Falls is an easy drive from 270 and has plenty of parking along the main road and various pockets of parking as you approach the main entrance for the falls. - Many great trails for us seniors. We decided to explore several area inside the park. Part of the Catoctin Mountains, the falls were shaped by past geological processes, which was certainly a site to see. Cunningham Falls State Park in Maryland holds a 78 foot waterfall called Cunningham Falls or McAfee Falls which is the largest cascading waterfall in Maryland. Houck Area - Pets are allowed in Bear Branch and Addison Run camp loops. Return to the lake by this trail or Lower Trail. Trail distance: 1.5 miles. The main attraction at Cunningham Falls State Park is its namesake 78-foot cascading waterfall, the largest in the state. North is quite rocky... big rocks up and down, but not a soul on it. At 78 feet, Cunningham Falls, the centerpiece of the state park bearing its name, is Maryland’s tallest waterfall and one of the state’s most visited. The trail is well maintained and pretty wide at some spots. I trekked up to the top to enjoy the cool water but be sure to take your time coming down. The short, moderately flat trail runs alongside numerous boulder problems en route to the falls. The park was not crowded and there was no admission charge. The clocks had gone back a couple of days before my visit, so I decided to take the quickest trail to Cunningham Falls – the Lower Falls Trail – as that was only half a mile long. cr The Cunningham Falls Aviary offers a unique chance to get up close with owls, … Great little loop to take grandkids to!!! Many beach-goers walked from the beach to do the hike as well. Did this quick and easy hike after Chimney Rock hike. Cunningham Falls State Park is in the Catoctin Mountains near Thurmont, Maryland. There are six interpretive nature signs along the way that make the hike more interesting. The rocks would have been annoying to descend. While you won’t want to bring a stroller, you can easily walk along the Lower Trail to see Cunningham Falls. - It's a lot less crowded. Besides hiking, the area is also popular for swimming, fishing, boating, and picnicking at Huntington Creek Lake nearby. Cunningham Falls State Park Campground Trail--orange blaze (3/4 mile) This strenuous trail gives campers access to the Cliff Trail. ... and we set off on the "lower trail" to the falls, which was the easier of the two routes. (One trail to the Falls and the other back to the car) The age and skill level of your children will probably help you decide which trail to take. I mean busier than any park we’ve ever visited.. On every trail we hiked, we encountered families with lots of children, entire boy scout troops, even bachelorette parties – it was crazy busy!. Near Thurmont, Maryland. Interpretive signs and benches along the way. The Cunningham Falls State Park trail system varies in terrain from short, flat hikes to steep and rocky ascents that will challenge even the experienced hiker. This loop is a combination of all of the three major loops in the Catoctin Mountain Park, totaling 8 miles and including Cunningham Falls, Hog Rock, Blue Ridge Summit, Thurmont Vista, Wolf Rock, and Chimney Rock. Beautiful, well maintained, and heavily trafficked. Parking at the Camp Office for hiking is not permitted April through October. Cunningham Falls, Maryland’s tallest, is the focal park of the state park bearing its name, but there are plenty of other worth destinations in this 6,000-acre wilderness a short striking distance from Frederick, Maryland.Cat Rock offers nice, albeit not fantastic, views of the surrounding Catoctin Mountains, but the real gem is the “rock” itself: a towering jumble of … NOTE: As of April 2020, the accessible boardwalk trail at the base of the falls is closed until further notice. This trail ends at the base of a beautiful 78-foot waterfall. The lower Falls trail is just under 3 miles round trip and not overly eventful on it's way to the falls. The easy out-and-back half-mile Lower Trail from the lake leads to the falls. I hiked the Lower Falls Trail to the falls and then hooked onto the Cliff Trail, which took me back to the parking lot. Directions from Thurmont, MD: Travel MD State Route 77 west approximately 4 miles turning left onto Catoctin Hollow Road. Known bouldering areas are along the Lower Trail and Cliff Trail from the Houck area to the park's eponymous falls, but outcroppings and boulders beckon from deeper in the woods. Return to the lake by this trail or Lower Trail. Cunningham Falls State Park is a public recreation area located west of Thurmont, Maryland, in the United States. Leisure opportunities like swimming, hiking, fishing and canoeing are available. Let’s hope it rains when we come back.... falls were dry!!! Towards the end the trail you will cross the street and at this point you will be entering Cunningham Falls State Park. Plus it is also next to Catoctin Mountain National Park which I had to skip as it was getting late but Catoctin has a hike to a Furnace and both parks would be a great day trip. - All of the trail surfaces was fairly hard due to it being earlier, cold and cloudy all day. There is a nice deck with benches to sit on at the bottom of the falls or you can pick up the trail to the upper portion of the falls while here. Went here twice this summer to cool off. You reach the Falls on a boardwalk. We visited the Cunningham Falls State Park on a weekday in Mid-September. The trail to the falls is very straightforward, but there are red trail blazes along the way just in case. Ranges from an easy walk to a challenging uphill hike, but the beautiful vistas make it well worth the effort. Lower Trail (0.5 miles) leads directly to the falls, whereas Cliff Trail (0.75 miles) has slightly more difficult terrain and takes you to a viewing platform. Second half more moderate with some scrambling up boulders. The trail ended at the scenic Cunningham Falls. The Cunningham Falls Aviary offers a unique chance to get up close with owls, hawks, eagles, and other feathered residents. Though Maryland’s tallest, the falls does not drop in one free-fall but rather a series of cascades 10-20 feet high, separated by small pools. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your The Cliff Trail is much more strenuous. They both leave from the parking lot near the entrance to the park. The last 0.2 of a mile are on a boardwalk and lead to a small viewing platform. We parked in a small parking lot and decided to hike to the falls. Being February there were still some icy patches on the trail but adults and children alike were still able to make the trip to the falls. - Winter is the best time to visit this area. The Cunningham Loop Trail #316 is made up of an upper trail, and a longer lower trail. There are two different trails that you can take to get to the falls, the cliff trail and the lower trail. Thurmont, MD Intermediate. While scenic, I would recommend them if you are in the area or a waterfall lover. But beautiful trail! The last 0.2 of a mile are on a boardwalk and lead to a small viewing platform. Learn More. You'll likely see many types of birds and small wildlife along the trail, as there are undisturbed native plants and trees. Easy/Intermediate. Both of these trails begin near Hunting Creek Lake. The Boardwalk Trail provides access for wheelchairs. There are six interpretive nature signs along the way that make the hike more interesting. The park is clean and the lower trail to the falls was a nice hike. Trails in Cunningham Falls State Park - 8. This trail terminates at the Falls. If you don’t feel like walking the trail back, the road is a nice alternative. Those who have adventurous toddlers can give the Cliff Trail a try. The wheelchair and stroller friendly Boardwalk Trail starts from a different parking lot and can be viewed on its own trail page here: https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/maryland/cunningham-falls-boardwalk-trail-accessible, Maryland Office of Tourism Development, Redwood Tower, 9th Floor, 217 E. Redwood Street , Baltimore, MD, 21202, Phone: 410-767-3400, Fax: 410-333-6643. Great for kids. We parked in a small parking lot and decided to hike to the falls. He served as that state s fourteenth Secretary of State, serving Championships 2018: Dominick Cunningham wins gold as Max … Those who have adventurous toddlers can give the Cliff Trail a try. If you have dogs who aren’t into crowds, I’d … There are two main trails to the falls, the 1/2 mile Lower Trail, and the 3/4 mile Cliff Trail. The route follows an abandoned road, which is being reclaimed by the forest, and contours around the slopes of Mt. We decided to explore several area inside the park. Travel about a mile turning right into the William Houck Area. Look for the red-blazed Lower Falls Trail from the main parking area to the west of Hunting Creek Lake. Cunningham Falls State Park. If you visit Cunningham Falls State Park in the summer months, I would highly recommend visiting during the week because there is a very popular beach co-located with the trail to the waterfall. Cunningham Falls Lower Trail and Cliff Trail Loop, https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/maryland/cunningham-falls-boardwalk-trail-accessible. The signs stated that it was a 1/2 mile hike to the falls for a total round trip of one mile. It's definitely one of the most picturesque parks I've visited, especially this time of The state park is the home of Cunningham Thomas Jefferson Cunningham 1852 1941 was a politician from the U.S. state of Wisconsin. Our hiking day included 4 different trails which were all quite easy. Cunningham Falls tumbles over the bedrock Hiking to Cunningham Falls. The clocks had gone back a couple of days before my visit, so I decided to take the quickest trail to Cunningham Falls – the Lower Falls Trail – as that was only half a mile long. The trail is well maintained and pretty wide at some spots. Cunningham Falls is lovely year-round though. The 1.2 mile loop is great for families and is dog-friendly. Check the website for more information. Outdoor activity is everywhere at Cunningham Falls State Park. The Lower Trail (1/2 mile) and the Cliff Trail (3/4 mile). Cunningham Falls State Park is located in the picturesque Catoctin Mountains. Start of Lower Falls Trail. Easy, great with kids and beautiful falls! Lower Falls Trail. The lower trail is fairly level and easy. ... and we set off on the "lower trail" to the falls, which was the easier of the two routes. Cunningham Falls Trails. The best place to park is on Catoctin Hollow Road in the parking lot that's on the same side of the road as the lake. The park was not crowded and there was no admission charge. The Outbound works best with JavaScript enabled. Head west along the lower contours across from Catoctin Mountain to the largest waterfall in Maryland. The short, moderately flat trail runs alongside numerous boulder problems en route to the falls. Take to the woods and hike to a serene waterfall in Cunningham Falls State Park--this short loop is great for all ages. Crowded hike even on a Tuesday afternoon. A short scenic hike. The falls loop is super busy with lots of kiddos and doggos. Swimming is prohibited and the face of the falls is slippery but both times we came it was packed with people. Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. If native wildlife is on your wish list, Cunningham Falls delivers with a healthy population of black bears, as well as reptiles, birds and other Catoctin Mountain species. Yes, this is a hike report about a local Maryland hike as we start to transition to the D.C. area. 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