Environment and Wildlife


Seneca Bluffs Trail and Trailhead Facility - Maryland

New bridge for the Seneca Bluffs Trail

This project entailed the construction of a new multi-use natural surface trail in Seneca State Park.

This new trail is located in Seneca State Park between Darnestown Road (Rte. 28) and River Road (Rte. 190) in Poolesville, Maryland. The trail was planned by several trail user organizations together with Seneca State Park personnel to accommodate horses, hikers and bikers.

Although the Park was riddled with old unauthorized trails, this new Seneca Bluffs Trail was situated along the ridge line high above Great Seneca Creek to provide an environmentally correct alignment so as to protect the watershed from undue erosion while providing trail users a fabulous view of the stream below.

The trail is approximately four miles in length and was constructed over a two-year period with assorted trail organizations working almost every weekend, with Park staff oversight, to complete the project. Several bridges and turnpike areas were also constructed to stabilize the tread.

Volunteers at work on the trail

Volunteers at work on the trail

The following volunteer organizations supplied the labor to construct the Seneca Bluffs Trail:

  • Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts
  • Montgomery County Road Runners
  • Coalition for the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail
  • Trail Riders of Today
  • Potomac Bridle & Hiking Trails Association

In addition, an expansion of a small parking area was substantially enlarged to accommodate horse trailers and the increased visitation. The trailhead parking lot at the southern terminus of Seneca Bluffs Trail was built using a Recreational Trails Program grant sponsored by Friends of Seneca Creek State Park. The four trails connecting here are: Seneca Creek Greenway Trail, Seneca Bluffs Trail, Dry Seneca Trail, and the C & O Canal towpath/trail.

The importance of this project rests upon the confluence of four trail systems at this trailhead, a vision supported by several trail user organizations working together to share the experience of nature while taking care to preserve it.

More winners of this award

2014: Navajo Lake State Park BOR Trail Rehabilitation - New Mexico

2012: Swords Park Trail (Phase 2) - Montana

2011: Middle Run Valley Bridge - Delaware

2010: Leave No Trace Program - Washington

2009: Highbridge Park Project - New York

2008: Crestone Needle/Humboldt Peak Project - Colorado

2007: Camp DREAM/Vermont Youth Conservation Corps Collaboration

2006: Four Corners Farm Conservation Easement - New Hampshire

2005: Cascade Trail Project - Maryland

2004: Lake 22 Trail Construction Project - Washington

2004: Yellowstone Wildlife Area Equestrian Trail - Wisconsin

2003: Peace Creek Trailhead Construction - Idaho

628 views • posted 12/29/2017