Merryman’s Mill Trail

Lovely spring breezes and reservoir views from well-mitered foot bridges await on Merryman’s Mill Trail in Gunpowder Falls State Park.

There are several variants on the out-and-back, so be sure to have a map with you. We took mostly the waterside trails, eschewing the inland variants as the day was hot and sunny and Loch Raven Reservoir is pretty. The trail is mostly soft cushy ground. A carpenter has clearly been busy in the Moab portion, as there were bridges made of Trex planks that had been mitered around rocks in situ — hats off to whoever hauled in all that equipment!

Total distance: 11 mi
Max elevation: 486 ft
Min elevation: 240 ft
Total climbing: 2413 ft
Total descent: -2416 ft
Average speed: 2.63 mi/h
Total time: 05:20:58

The trail starts in the woods and heads out to the waterside, right at water level.

Dar’s feet are still being enviously bright and patterned. Let’s take a moment to admire my neon green leg warmers. That’s right, we are the 80s.

I was quite enamored of the views across the water.

A leafy tunnel embraces hikers.

Flouncing may ensue.

There is a picnic bench.

The trail is dirt and sometimes soft leaves.

Stop poking me! I’ll bite you!

There is a non-difficult stream crossing.

We spied Nessy, the reservoir monster.

There are hills to climb. The terrain is rolling.

The water gets further away.

A funnel!

Check out that carpentry! And a rock mat for mountain bikers.

Drunken tilty bridge.

The bridges are well-engineered: planks on metal beams.


Distance10.9 miles
Elevation Gain1102 feet
Moving Time4 hours, 53 minutes
Total Time5 hours, 21 minutes
Average Pace29 minutes per mile / 2.2 mph
Temperature Range45 to 72°F


PackCamelBak Aventura hydration pack
NavigationPhone 6 with AllTrails Pro
ShoesHoka One One Speedgoat 4 Gore Tex trailing running shoes
Used Poles?No
ClothesSocks: Injinji Trail Midweight Mini Crew Toesocks
Gaiters: Outdoor Research Thru lightweight summer gaiters
Bottom: cotton capri tights
Shirt: short sleeve wicking tee
Shirt: long sleeve wicking tee
Jacket: Lightweight blue zipper jacket


See my current gear, clothing, and thoughts about it on the Hiking Gear page.