2013 Spring Activities and Facility Schedules
Catoctin Mountain Park Announces Spring Activities and Facility Schedules
Interpretive Activities Spring Wildflower walks - Saturday, April 27 at 11:00 a.m., and, Sunday, May 12 at 1:00 p.m. at the Owens Creek Picnic Area
Join a ranger at the Brown's Farm Trail in Owens Creek Picnic Area at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 27 or Sunday, May 12 at 1:00 p.m. for an interpretive wildflower walk. Together, you will explore an easy ½ mile trail that meanders through several types of habitat. The ranger will acquaint you with the flowers that are blooming, and will tell you why they are so particular about where they grow and when they flower.
Resource Protection Activities
Spring Deer Spotlight Survey
National Park Service personnel will be conducting deer spotlight surveys to estimate the area's current deer population density from 8:00 pm to 11:00 pm, April 15 through April 19, 2013. All roads within or along Catoctin Mountain Park boundaries will be included in the survey. These roads include Park Central, Manahan, Foxville-Deerfield, and Quirauk School Roads and Route 77.
Spotlighting will only take place on NPS land and will be conducted from a marked NPS vehicle.
Debris Pile Burn/ Structural Fire Training Exercise
Catoctin Mountain Park and the Guardian Hose Company of Thurmont, MD will conduct a mutual Fire Training Exercise May 3 - 5, 2013. The exercise, conducted on the recently acquired Braestrup Tract is part of Catoctin's Five Year Fire Management Plan. Debris burning reduces the build-up of hazardous fuels that could ignite wildland fires. Implementing this prescribed fire meets the following fire management objectives for the Braestrup property: restore the cultural landscape to the 1930's era, enhance joint training with cooperating agencies and provide fiscally responsible debris disposal. The Braestrup property will be closed at noon on Thursday, May 2 and will reopen at 8:00 a.m., Monday, May 6. Primary ignition will take place at 10:00 a.m., Friday, May 3. The fire will be suppressed and mop-up operations concluded on Sunday, May 5. Smoke is not expected to impact areas beyond the park boundary including State Route 491 and Buck Lantz Road. Please direct questions about the Fire Training Exercise to Fire Management Officer Don Stanley at 301-416-0100.
Facility Operations Schedule
Visitor Center hours and camping seasons at Catoctin Mountain Park are listed below for the coming season.
Beginning, April 12, the Visitor Center will be open from 9:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Friday and from 8:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Center will be closed on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
Visitors needing assistance with America the Beautiful Senior or Access Passes when the Visitor Center is closed are invited to contact Antietam National Battlefield or Harpers Ferry National Historical Park for assistance. Junior Rangers should visit the park on Friday, Saturday and Sunday to review their booklets and obtain their badge. Visitors needing emergency assistance should call the National Capital Region Dispatch Center at 1-866-677-6677
Owens Creek Campground - Opens for family camping beginning May 17
Owens Creek Campground will open on a first-come, first-served basis at 12 noon on May 17. Each site is limited to one camping unit (tent or trailer) and a maximum of 5 people. Maximum tent size is 9'x12'. Trailers up to 22' in length are accepted but there are no hookups. The fee is $20.00 per night. The Campground will close for the season on November 4.
Camp Misty Mount - Cabin rentals available April 26 through October 27
Cabins may be rented in historic Camp Misty Mount from April 26 through October 28. Rustic chestnut cabins constructed by the Works Progress Administration are available to individuals, families and groups. Reservations are now accepted on-line at recreation .gov or by calling 877-444-6777. The camp office can be reached by phone at 301-271-3140.
Catoctin Forest Alliance Day of Service, at Camp Greentop, May 11, 2013
Catoctin Mountain Park's primary Friends Group, The Catoctin Forest Alliance, will hold a "Day of Service" at Camp Greentop on May 11th from 9:00 am till 4:00 pm.
Individuals and groups are invited to participate in a variety of projects ranging from carpentry and painting to eradication of invasive plant species Youth from age 12 and up as well as adults interested in the preservation and maintenance of Catoctin Mountain Park are invited.
Work will start at 9:00 am and continue until 4:00 pm. Volunteers will be asked to bring their own lunches. All participants will be invited to a free pizza party beginning at 4:30pm and a campfire at 6:00pm for all who wish to stay. To sign up or if you have questions, contact Jim Sundergill at 301-898-7549 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Catoctin Mountain Park is one of over 400 units administered by the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior. The park Visitor Center, located on State Route 77 three miles west of Thurmont, Maryland, is open from 9:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Friday, and from 8:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Correspondence should be addressed to: Superintendent, Catoctin Mountain Park, 6602 Foxville Road, Thurmont, MD 21788. Our website address is www.nps.gov/cato. General information can be obtained by calling the Visitor Center at (301) 663-9388.
Did You Know?
Early April, 1942 a basic training school for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was opened at Area B (Catoctin Mountain Park).The school evolved into primarily paramilitary training with British Captain William Fairbairn, “Fearless Dan” or “Shanghai Buster” as it’s most famous instructor.