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Outdoor Adventures in Maryland

There are lots of outdoor adventures to be had in Maryland. Some take advantage of its location on the Atlantic and Chesapeake Bay; others find fun on land and even in the treetops.

Head in search of wild ponies on Assateague Island. Leave footsteps in the 35 miles of sand at Assateague Island National Seashore. It's a great place for a kayak tour, too. A hunting season offers opportunities for shooting waterfowl and deer.

Tackle the waves off Ocean City. Options include kayaks, canoes, jet skis, surfboards, paddleboards, or just swimming.

There's no better place than Maryland to go crabbing; with luck, you'll bring up some classic Maryland blue crab. Try the crabbing pier in Sandy Point State Park. There's great fishing in the park, too, and in towns throughout the state, including Annapolis, Salisbury, and Ocean City.

In Rockville, explore Rock Creek Regional Park. You can drop a line in Lake Needwood, or rent a canoe, kayak, rowboat, or pedal boat. Head to the Boat House for boat rentals or to purchase fishing gear. There are also tours available on the Needwood Queen, a pontoon boat.

Rock Creek Regional Park also has 13 miles of trails to hike. Meadowside Nature Center's Raptor Walkway lets visitors get close up to birds of prey. Make your way to Go Ape! and head up to the trees for true adventure with a high obstacle course and zip-lines. You'll also find Needwood Golf Course within the park.

Visit Tuckahoe State Park in Queen Anne. The park offers everything from boating to hiking and equestrian trails. You can also stroll the paved paths in the Adkins Arboretum as you roam through 500 acres of native trees and shrubs. The park features goose hunting in November and December; permits are awarded by lottery.

Winter travelers to Maryland can head out of doors and enjoy the snow at the Wisp Ski Area. Besides the lifts and slopes, Bear Claw Adventure Park offers snow tubing and ice skating. Snow shoes and cross-country skiing offer other ways to travel through the snow. The unique Mountain Coaster blends an Alpine Slide and a roller coaster.

The historic Chesapeake & Ohio Canal's towpath offers great recreational activities along its length from Maryland into Washington, D.C. and West Virginia. The trail is perfect for biking and walking; adjacent trails offer more rugged hiking and horseback riding, while the water offers boating and fishing.

Capital Region travelers can take advantage of their proximity to the District of Columbia. Paddle boats at the Tidal Basin offer a pleasant way to take in an unusual view of the Jefferson Memorial. Anacostia Park offers 1,200 acres to explore. Wander through Kenilworth Park & Aquatic Gardens or play a round of golf at Langston Golf Course.

Near Baltimore, enjoy a day outdoors in town at the Maryland Zoo or Sherwood Gardens. It's not far out of the city to Patapsco Valley State Park, where there's good hiking. An easy drive will take you to Patapsco River for fishing, or head out on a boat in the Inner Harbor.