It was less than a two-hour drive from Capon Bridge to Catoctin Mountain so I was able to tour the sweet little town of Thurmont, Maryland by bike before heading to camp. I'd been off the saddle for a week, and was heading 12 miles uphill to camp, so I took full advantage of a few free hours to pedal.
Somehow I knew absolutely nothing about this national park after living in Maryland for 8 years. It has 25 miles of diverse hiking trails, fishing streams, a variety of camping options, and great prices! It also has bears, copperheads and rattlesnakes; none of whom joined me at camp or on the trails.
The Owens Creek Campground is primitive camping and other than the usual Friday night to Sunday morning crowd, it was incredibly peaceful. There were actually 3 nights where I had no other campers in sight for 8-14 campsites, though there was a host up the road. While there was a clean, old bathhouse and a water pump, the sole recreation is at your site or on 14 trails; so no big demand here. Just great.
I thoroughly enjoyed hiking 6 trails, heading into Thurmont for cycling, ice and books twice, and sheer relaxation day and night in this beautiful greenspace. There was one night of intense 2-hour long thunderstorms, but otherwise, hot and sunny. Near week's end, I was happy to have a friend visit and join me to hike, lunch, and chat for a few hours! I'm not forgetting how to socialize, I'm just not reaching out much to strangers these days.
I've now landed a little further north with two stops in Pennsylvania -- yes, one indoors and one out.
Cyclist, writer, teacher, avid reader, bike/ped advocate, nomad, pie lover