Both President Obama and Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley has declared June as “Great Outdoors Month,” urging every American to uphold our legacy of conserving lands for future generations. Whether it’s hiking, fishing, kayaking, bird watching–or simply having a picnic and enjoying nature–getting outdoors with loved ones is a perfect way to celebrate the Great Outdoors.
Fortunately, you have in your very own backyards–literally–a space for doing just that. And it’s free! The Accokeek Foundation has been stewarding, for more than 50 years, the 200-acres of Piscataway Park located at the end of Bryan Point Road so that its natural resources can be enjoyed by the public for generations to come. The park offers five nature trails, a picnicking area, a living history museum with its heirloom gardens and heritage livestock, a popular fishing pier, and an organic farm featuring an on-farm market opening this June.
With all of these great opportunities to get out in to nature, we are excited about tomorrow specifically. June 7 is not only National Trails Day, but it is also the first of three free fishing days! If you are looking for a great place to blaze some trails there are a variety of scenic trails to stroll through. Or you can join in on the volunteer day, tomorrow to help maintain one of the site’s nature trails. There are over 3 miles of trails and you can loop through them all in a reasonable and enjoyable amount of time.
The Pumpkin Ash Trail follows the Potomac River from near the Visitor Center to the Ecosystem Farm, passing through a forest and a tidal wetland and providing excellent views of Mount Vernon.
The Blackberry Trail connects with the Pumpkin Ash Trail near the Ecosystem Farm and ends in a small hayfield near visitor parking, meandering through a floodplain forest.
The Riverview Trail follows the Potomac River from near the Visitor Center, providing some views of Mount Vernon along the way
The Persimmon Trail begins in the barnyard and circles the Conservation Pond.
The Bluebird Trail runs along the edge of the Native Tree Arboretum and around scattered chestnut groves down to the Potomac River.
The Pawpaw Trail begins at the Native Tree Arboretum and leads up the hillside through a mature forest.
These trails are all family friendly, not necessarily stroller friendly however, and dogs on a leash are welcome to join you. Trail guide maps are available in the Visitor Center which is open from 10 am until 4 pm.
The Visitor Center also offers bait, weights and rigs if you’d want to enjoy a day of fishing on the Potomac (with a grand view of Mount Vernon.) No license or registration is required to fish on June 7, 14 and July 4. Picnic tables are available around the site for you to enjoy a full day in the great outdoors at Piscataway Park. Ample parking is available, entrance to the park is free, and for your convenience there are clean restrooms located at the Visitor Center.
How do you plan to enjoy the great outdoors this June? We hope it’s with us at the farm!