Description - Scattered throughout 5 travel regions, Maryland offers 16 recreation and cultural sites. The majority of the sites are open year-round and are handicapped accessible. Education, civic and other groups are welcome. Most sites are closed major federal holidays.
Copyright: - US National Park Service
Thomas Stone National Historic Site
- A variety of activities at Maryland's 16 national parks depend on your where your interests lie. Historians can explore war memorials including such famed sites as Antietam National Battlefield and Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine. Antietam was the site of a pivotal Civil War battle that claimed 23,000 lives in a single day giving President Abraham Lincoln the opportunity to issue the Emancipation Proclamation, which, on January 1, 1863, declared free all slaves in states still in rebellion against the United States. Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine honors the defense of Baltimore in the War of 1812 against the British.
One of the most popular national parks and a favorite among hikers and bicyclists is the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Park. It is along this linear canal that recreation enthusiasts find rest and relaxation with the added bonus of scenic views. Other parks offering woods, streams, birdlife and plant life include Greenbelt Park, a retreat from the pressures of city life just twelve miles from Washington, D.C. The park offers an impressive 174 year-round campsites. There is also Piscataway Park, a tribute to the National Park Service. This particular urban park project began in 1952 as a way to preserve the Potomac river view as it was during the days of the country's founding fathers and to preserve the lands from obtrusive urban expansion. Maryland's largest national park is Catoctin Mountain Park, a 1930s purchase. For years, the land was mined for charcoal to fuel the iron furnace, used for mountain farming, and for harvesting of trees for timber. Today, it offers in conjunction with Cunningham Falls State Park, 25 miles of hiking trails. A multitude of other recreations are pursued including, camping, fly fishing, and scenic driving.
Recreation - Maryland's national parks offer visitors and residents alike an opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors while pursuing a variety of recreations including boating, fishing, hiking, biking, camping, touring, and wildlife viewing.
Climate - Maryland has four distinct seasons with spring and fall being particularly pleasant with low humidity and mild temperatures. The average January temperature ranges between 30 and 34 degrees F (-1 to 1 C) with July averages ranging between 74 degrees F and 80 degrees F. Typically, coastal temperatures are slightly warmer then the western Appalachian Plateau area. Travelers should be aware that winters can become miserably cold and summers can be hazy, hot and humid with afternoon thundershowers.
The national lands in Maryland stretch throughout the five travel regions.