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Parkers Creek Watershed Nature Preserve protects one of the last remaining pristine watersheds on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. Located just north of Calvert Cliffs in southern Maryland, nearly 3,000 acres are conserved and managed here by the American Chestnut Land Trust.
The brackish tidal stream known as Parkers Creek meanders through salt marsh to the Bay's shoreline. The extensive trails of Parkers Creek Natural Area invite visitors to enjoy one of the largest contiguous tracts of forest in Calvert County. From dry, sandy upland woods to cool, moist ravines and along forested wetlands, the trail system allows visitors to experience the unusual geology, topography and hydrology of this Natural Area. The ancient shell deposits from the Miocene Epoch that produce fossils on the beaches of Calvert County also create fertile soils in the inland ravines that support remarkable spring wildflower displays.
All American Chestnut Land Trust properties and most of the state-owned properties that American Chestnut Land Trust manages are open to the public every day of the year from dawn to dusk for passive recreation using our 15 miles of trails. The Warrior’s Rest Sanctuary, as well as the beaches and the majority of the marshes surrounding Parkers Creek, have limited public access as required by the landowner
(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)
There are no fees for using the preserve's trails. Donations to the American Chestnut Land Trust are encouraged.
Visitors to the preserve use 15 miles of trails for walking, jogging, cross-country skiing, bird-watching, photography and ecological and environmental studies. The trails traverse the sides of Parkers Creek and offer views of the Chesapeake Bay from high bluffs. Trail maps are available at the preserve and on-line.
The American Chestnut Land Trust sponsors canoe and kayaking trips during the year and also manages limited access to a state beachfront property for groups wishing to canoe the area.
The American Chestnut Land Trust, established in 1986, was at the forefront of a new grassroots land conservation movement.