Updated on May 14, 2019
Hiking to Annapolis Rock in South Mountain State Park
A post about my weekend hiking trip to South Mountain State Park in Northern Maryland, which features part of the Appalachian Trial and has two overlooks of Annapolis Rock and Black Rock.
After peak bloom of cherry flowers, spring had finally came around the DC areas. So I thought it should be time to explore a few hiking trails near Washington DC, and I picked South Mountain State Park for the weekend.
Spring colors decorated my excursion to its trailhead, but unfortunately it turned out that spring would arrive at the no-so-fertile soil of South Mountain a bit later than its surroundings, with the entire mountain still covered in not much more than lifeless tree branches.
Oh, and this segment of Appalachian Trail seemed to be a pretty popular weekend getaway for the locals, as I slipped my car into basically the last spot of a newly expanded parking lot on this early April afternoon.
Since there wasn’t much life around the hiking trail, I didn’t capture many photos of that.
First it’s Annapolis Rock located slightly off the Appalachian Trail. There was a tent site nearby and a loving lady in charge of her caretaker tent, although some chat later it seemed that “trash remover” better described her job, which she was sort of reluctant to admit, as “caretaker” sounded more like attendant to nature and forest compared to their visitors.
As for Annapolis Rock itself, it was a popular climbing spot, which sort of explained the overflowing of trailhead parking lot. The weather’s not perfect but views were not bad.
After that, I headed farther North to Black Rock, which is, I guess, some boulders less famous than Annapolis Rock, the width of trail could certainly attest to that.
Farther away, less crowded, and in my opinion had better view than Annapolis Rock given it’s located in a more “convex” point of the mountain.
After that, I headed back to parking lot and called it a day.
This segment of Appalachian Trail was a rather popular weekend getaway for the locals, as a result, the trail (up to Annapolis Rock) was wide as thoroughfare by hiking standards. Even after quite some rain last night, there were few muddy spots. And it came with knee-friendly stairs made of trunks to tackle the slopes of mountain.
Judging by how full the parking lot was that afternoon, quite a lot of people were out seeking spring colors after a long winter, like me. Unfortunately to those people’s disappointment, spring arrives later on mountains.