From the couch to the trails

Tag Archives: Falling Branch Trail

Let’s just say that our first family hike did not get off to such a smooth start.  We were very unorganized in the morning rushing to grab and go all that we would need (which was not much).  So there was a little frustration there….  But the hour long drive brought us plenty of light conversation and pretty Maryland views.  We even arrived a little early to the park.  The gates were not set to open until 9am.


Well around 9:15pm we started getting frustrated that the gates STILL were not open.Image  By 9:40pm I was on the phone with the DNR trying to figure out if maybe this part of the park was not open on Sundays.  Low and behold 5 minutes after the phone call someone arrived to open the gate.

Finally we were off on the trail.  ImageWe got a later start than we had intended but luckily the cover of the trees gave us plenty of shade and the humidity was not so bad, not so bad at all.  The hike to the falls was SOOOO short and non-strenuous.  The terrain was very easy to navigate.  There were boardwalks, rocks to hop over the stream, dirt paths and rock formations.


Along the way we saw some pretty cedar trees and some other old trees with beautiful exposed roots.


The falls were gorgeous!!  So very pretty.  We had the place to ourselves for about 20 minutes before anyone else arrived.  We got to swim out to the falls , dig under rocks to find bugs and just enjoy the peace and quiet.


We did not see lots of beautiful flowers but there was certainly lots of green.  ImageThere were some very impressive rock formations to see.


It really did feel like we had our own piece of paradise.


Here is my favorite picture of the day!Image

You can absolutely bring kids along with you on this hike.  Maybe even pack a snack and stay for a few hours.  I loved that the falls even made my son smile and clap.  Which if you have a teenager you know this is not always easily done.


The water was clean we filled up a water bottle just so we could see how clear it was.  ImageAfter about 45 minutes of playing in the falls we headed back towards the car.  You can opt to come back along the trail the way that you came OR you can go up around the back and top of the falls and cross the river up there.  There is a trail to the left of the falls that you can take up and around the back of the falls.  There was a fun little rock crevasse that had what looked like rock steps.

The loop back around was a little more strenuous but I would still classify it as easy.  PLUS you can sit in the water where the before the falls turn into falls.


There was a small area at the bottom of the falls that would allow you to jump into the water pool below but it was too small for our taste and not worth the risk.  So after playing around in the water for a while we took the hike back to the car.  The loop behind the falls met up with the same trail that we came in on.  So it was a nice leisurely walk back.

I would recommend this trail if:

You are looking for someplace to take a short walk and cool off

If you have smaller children with you

If you want to just check out some beautiful sights

If you are looking for a work out you might want to skip this one.

The trail is easy to find

We came from route 24 just drive through Rock State Park

make a left on to St. Mary’s Road and then a right on to Falling Branch Rd.  The parking lot will be on the right hand side.


So, I am looking a little closer at the trail that we planned for tomorrow…looks PRETTY SIMPLE.  Maybe a little too simple.  I hope it is enough to get our blood pumping.  With this heat and humidity we are having here in Maryland I am sure we will work up a sweat.  Like most “chubby girls” I am on a diet.  The diet I am doing is called Ideal Protein it strongly restricts carbs and sugar and of course calories so I have to mindful of how much strenuous activity I get myself into because I get pretty tire pretty quickly….but just in case we found another trail not far away from this one so we have a back up plan.

Here are some pictures that I was able to find of the Falls at the end of the Falling Branch Trail.  The fall is called Kilgore Falls.  My friends in Harford County are probably pretty familiar.  I, on the other hand, had no idea about this awesome little spectacular gem .  I can not wait until tomorrow to tell you guys all about it!!!!


hidden less than a mile away from my house.Image

Hi everyone!  My name is Kaycie,  I am a city girl from Baltimore MD.  My husband is an outdoors man.   I, on the other hand,am more of a dinner, drinks and Starbucks kinda girl.   For years he has asked me to hike.  I have sometimes agreed but ONLY if it is on a paved road and not to hilly.  I mean I did not want to sweat and I did NOT want to get dirty.

Well then I earned a free trip to Hawaii through my Scentsy business.  And when I was asking around about what to see and do in Hawaii Hiking was always on the top of everyone’s list.  My friend Brooke was my own private tour guide.  She actually has a blog that tells all about her hikes in Hawaii… and her life too… she is pretty special  CoveredInGrace is the name of her blog if you would like to check it out.  So I thought okay well at least Jim (my husband) will like that.  We should for sure do it.  Little did I know that I was going to fall in love with the adventure of being off of the path and getting dirty.  My favorite trail to hike was Manawilli Falls.  It was a trail that started at the end of a residential neighborhood and one that you don’t really just find my accident.  Lucky for me I had Brooke .Image

So we started out on this trail all alone talking about what are the big scary predators in Hawaii.  Neither of us knew…. So of course we googled it…. More experienced hikers might have done that ahead of time, I guess.  Once we found that there were not really any we relaxed a little bit.  So this hike was about 1.5 miles each way but the amazing thing about it was that at the end of the 1.5 miles there was a super awesome waterfall with a small pool to jump off of cliff next to the waterfall and into the poll.  And believe me WE NEEDED THIS REFRESHING WATER!!!

When we got home everyone asked us what was our favorite part of Hawaii and we both said that it was this hike.  We both were sweaty and out of shape struggling up those muddy hills but we both felt sooooo  good doing it.  (Welllllll maybe not in the moment but once we finished)  And the reward of the waterfall was just amazing!! Image So here I am back in Baltimore in the middle of summer…. A hot muggy super humid summer… and I find myself wanting more.   Jim, Codey (my 17 yr old son) and I decided around the dinner table that we were going to do the Maryland portion of the Appalachian Trail this November…..BUT MOM (me) quickly veto’d November and pushed it back to next Spring in May.  This is a four day hike, 10 miles a day and I just was not convinced that I would be prepared by November.

So now here we are with a goal of the Maryland portion of the Appalachian Trail in May.  We decided to start a weekly family hike every Sunday morning in and around Maryland to get accustomed to the different terrains that we will run into on our BIG HIKE.    Our journey begins this Sunday!  We are going to start at Falling Branch Trail it Kilgore Falls in Pylesville Maryland.  The reviews say that it is an easy trail with a great reward at the end.  So I am hoping that Codey will enjoy this hike as much as Jim and I enjoyed Manawili Falls so that he is as enthused about this new adventure as I am.  I will report back with you guys on Sunday to let you know how it goes.   I am hoping that this blog will help me to stay dedicated to my weekly goal and also maybe I will be able to give you guys some tips on where to hike and where not to hike…and vice versa.