DNR Secretary’s Message: Blaze A New Trail This Summer

Hiking at Tuckahoe State Park. Maryland Department of Natural Resources photo.
Hiking at Tuckahoe State Park. Maryland Department of Natural Resources photo.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – June is Great Outdoors Month, and this year the month kicked off with National Trails Day. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources offers thousands of miles of great trails for hiking, biking, horse riding and other activities. These marked paths can be found for any skill level or terrain, within the hundreds of thousands of acres of wildlife management areas, state parks, and state forests

DNR is also expanding the way trails can be enjoyed. Among our many activities statewide, the Department of Natural Resources dedicated a new “sensory trail” at Tuckahoe State Park. This easy-to-navigate loop trail provides a series of stations designed to allow hikers to recognize different sounds, textures, and smells along the trail, thereby gaining confidence in their own abilities to interpret the environment at their own pace. We are continually looking for ways to make sure that nature is accessible by everyone. 

June is an ideal time to be outside – as spring turns into summer, every corner of Maryland has come alive with animal and plant life that can be observed during longer days of sunlight. Several of our parks also provide evening or “full moon” hikes to escape the heat of the day and experience nature after dark.

During Pollinator Week, June 17-23, take some extra time to observe and learn more about these creatures’ essential role in our ecosystem. As summer approaches and flowers bloom, we will begin to spot more and more pollinators from bees to birds to butterflies.

Maryland is a great destination for outdoor activities thanks to protected forests, fields, and shorelines that provide these scenic vistas and  habitat for wildlife. And DNR will continue to acquire, conserve, and protect lands – partnering with our local communities so that generations of Marylanders can enjoy them  close to where they live. Throughout the state, signs are posted at properties where the state has provided funding for these programs for the purchase of land for recreational uses.

DNR and the Moore-Miller Administration will continue to assure that every Marylander has a right to experience these public lands, now and in the future. So take a step into nature – whether on familiar paths or new territory, for your first time or millionth time. Meander along a sandy trail by the ocean or on the lofty heights of the Appalachian Trail. Wherever you go, Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources’ staff looks forward to welcoming you this summer! 

Josh Kurtz is Secretary of Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

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