Monday, September 8, 2014

Elk Neck State Park and Turkey Point Lighthouse



Located in northeastern Maryland is a nice place to visit called Elk Neck State Park. Perched high atop an overlook, at the southern edge of the Elk Neck Peninsula, is the Turkey Point Lighthouse. It has stood watch above the North East River, the Elk River, and the Chesapeake Bay since 1833. 

We found this park by chance during one of our Sunday drives.  And I am so glad we did. We have returned several times through the years in order to walk out to the overlook area and then to meander along the trails along the bluff.  I supposed I shouldn't call it meandering. The trails we choose can be very steep from the lighthouse to the water.  It is an interesting terrain filled with tree roots poking out from the hard-packed soil banks.  At some points, we climbed down the bank and walked along the rip-rap at the water's edge. 

I should point out that the trail from the parking lot to the lighthouse is a somewhat long, but an easy and wide gravel path.  I did read some reviews about complaints at the length of the this path. This lighthouse overlook is definitely not an area where you park next to the attraction. There is a bit of a walk. So wear your comfy shoes and bring the good stroller if you have a baby.  When I go, I bring my back pack with water, snacks, a blanket to sit on, and as always, something to read.

The Turkey Point Lighthouse provides a peek into history as well as an area for camping, swimming, fishing, and hiking.  The accompanying home was razed in 1972 but fortunately, the lighthouse and one small outbuilding remain. During the weekends April through November, you can climb the inside of the lighthouse.  I have not yet toured the inside of the lighthouse. For more information about the lighthouse or the tours, you can visit the official Maryland Department of Natural Resources page.

I have not yet ventured into the park for more than day trips so I do not have first hand experience with the recreational beach, and camping areas. However, many local residents go there and recommend it to others.  Overall, it seems to be a well-liked camping area; complete with tiny rustic cabin rentals, an easy access swimming beach, and plenty of less treacherous hiking trails to choose from.  For some of these first hand reviews and  photographs about the camping area I suggest that you read the reviews on TripAdvisor.

Finally, I was thrilled to find Glen Fortner's video of the lighthouse area.  It is a very brief video (under a minute) that will give you a sense of the beauty of the lighthouse, overlook, and flora and fauna.  

Written by Dawn Rae
Image Credit: Skip willits (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


5 comments:

  1. Dawn This looks great..thanks for the information on this lighthouse. It really looks interesting.

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  2. This sounds like such a beautiful place to visit! I just know my husband & I would would the hike to the lighthouse and enjoying the scenery. This would truly be perfect in fall weather.

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  3. How lovely the lighthouse looks nestled amid the trees. (This would look fabulous on a Zazzle postcard!) I can definitely see myself sitting beneath its watchful beacon reading for an afternoon.

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  4. hopefully this doesn't post twice - had a glitch for second - I had said that I would love visit it, looks relaxing and beautiful! We driven through Maryland, but straight through without stopping, darn!

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