Hike the Switchback trail in Patapsco State Park

3.9 Miles Round Trip - 249 ft gain - Loop Trail

Switchback Trail - Search Nearby - Added by The Outbound Collective

Lovely wooded trail featuring a river. 

Park in the lot off of Marriottsville Road (see map) to access the trail. Trail is dog-friendly and a good one for kids. 

Photos: Jeff Kubina, Doug Miller


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly


3.9 Miles
249 ft elevation gain
Loop Trail

Stay Nearby

Millersville, Maryland

Washington DC / Capitol KOA

Greenbelt, Maryland

Greenbelt Park Picnic Areas

Greenbelt, Maryland

Greenbelt Campground

Washington, District of Columbia

Rock Creek Park Group Picnic Areas

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Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Gorgeous trail to share with kids

We took an autumn hike the day after heavy rains and were still able to enjoy a nice loop on the purple “Tall Poplar” trail. Painted trail markers on the trees were easy to connect with after walking across the grass (opposite the playground) from a big honor box pay lot. The playground equipment and bathrooms were a fun post-hike surprise for the kids and the swollen river was gorgeous. The park website has trail maps for this entire area

Fun Place For Some Exercise

Patapsco offers some fun trails that are perfect for those looking to get into hiking, they don't offer grand views but can be fun for beginners.